Important Changes That May Impact Your Financial Aid

Direct Loan Program

Decrease in Interest Rates for Federal Loans First Disbursed on or After July 1, 2015:

https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/about/announcements/interest-rate

Decrease in Origination Fees for Federal Loans First Disbursed on or After October 1, 2015:

  • For a Direct Subsidized or Direct Unsubsidized Loan, the loan origination fee for loans first disbursed on or after October 1, 2014 and before October 1, 2015 is 1.073% of the principal amount of the loan. For example, the loan origination fee on a principal loan amount of $5,500 would have been $59.02. For loans that are first disbursed on or after October 1, 2015 and before October 1, 2016 is 1.068%. In this case our example for a loan origination fee on a principal loan amount of $5,500 would be $58.74.
  • For Direct PLUS Loans for both parent and graduate student borrowers, the loan origination fee for loans first disbursed on or after October 1, 2014 and before October 1, 2015 is 4.292% of the principal amount of a loan. For example, the fee on a $10,000 Direct PLUS Loan would be $429.20. For loans that are first disbursed on or after October 1, 2015 and before October 1, 2016 is 4.272%. In this case our example for a loan origination fee on a principal loan amount of $10,000 would be $427.20.

More information regarding Federal Direct Loans can be found at https://studentaid.ed.gov/types/loans/interest-rates.

Satisfactory Academic Progress Standards

Under the Satisfactory Academic Progress policy, at the end of Spring semester, the academic record of each student will be reviewed to determine if the student is meeting the minimum standards in place to measure progress. These standards include a minimum cumulative grade point average and completion of a minimum percentage of all attempted credit hours. Each student is responsible for their awareness of the policy in place for their particular level of study (Undergraduate, Graduate, or Professional). It is recommended that students review the full policy which is available at http://financialaid.wvu.edu/maintaining-your-aid/academic_progress

Students who are NOT maintaining these minimal standards will lose financial aid eligibility until he or she can improve the overall academic record. If a student continues after this point, they must do so without federal, state, or institutional financial aid.

While there is an appeal process in place, only students who can document extenuating circumstances during an enrollment period and who have taken steps to address those circumstances should consider appealing. Appeals require that students meet with an academic advisor and must be submitted by the published deadline date of the enrollment period which you are requesting aid.

The deadline for submitting Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeal Form and required documentation is the end of the first week of classes for which you are seeking aid.

Students may only submit one Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeal per semester.

Students can view the status of their financial aid academic progress on STAR under the Financial Aid tab; click on “eligibility” and then on “academic progress.”


Previous Changes that You Need to Be Aware Of

Repeated Course Work

Previously passed classes may only be repeated one time and continue to be included in determining enrollment status (full-time, half-time, etc). Students repeating previously passed classes may experience reduced eligibility for financial aid when those classes are excluded from calculating enrollment status. Repeated courses do affect satisfactory academic progress standards. A repeated course (along with the original attempt) is counted towards the maximum time frame and completion rate.

Direct Loan Program

150% Subsidized Loan Limit for First-time Borrowers on or after July 1, 2013:

If you are a first-time borrower on or after July 1, 2013, there is a limit on the maximum period of time (measured in academic years) that you can receive Direct Subsidized Loans. This time limit does not apply to Direct Unsubsidized Loans or Direct PLUS Loans. If this limit applies to you, you may not receive Direct Subsidized Loans for more than 150 percent of the published length of your program. This is called your “maximum eligibility period.” Your maximum eligibility period is based on the published length of your current program. You can usually find the published length of any program of study in your school’s catalog.

For example, if you are enrolled in a four-year bachelor’s degree program, the maximum period for which you can receive Direct Subsidized Loans is six years (150 percent of 4 years = 6 years). If you are enrolled in a two-year associate degree program, the maximum period for which you can receive Direct Subsidized Loans is three years (150 percent of 2 years = 3 years).

Because your maximum eligibility period is based on the length of your current program of study, your maximum eligibility period can change if you change to a program that has a different length. Also, if you receive Direct Subsidized Loans for one program and then change to another program, the Direct Subsidized Loans you received for the earlier program will generally count toward your new maximum eligibility period.

Certain types of enrollment may cause you to become responsible for the interest that accrues on your Direct Subsidized Loans when the U.S. Department of Education usually would have paid it. These enrollment patterns are described below.

Increase in Origination Fees for all Federal Loan Borrowers

  • For a Direct Subsidized or Direct Unsubsidized Loan, the loan origination fee for loans first disbursed on or after December 1, 2013 and before October 1, 2014 is 1.072% of the principal amount of the loan. For example, the loan origination fee on a principal loan amount of $5,500 would have been $58.96. For loans that are first disbursed on or after October 1, 2014 and before October 1, 2015 is 1.073%. In this case our example for a loan origination fee on a principal loan amount of $5,500 would be $59.02.
  • For Direct PLUS Loans for both parent and graduate student borrowers, the loan origination fee for loans first disbursed on or after December 1, 2013 and before October 1, 2014 is 4.288% of the principal amount of a loan. For example, the fee on a $10,000 Direct PLUS Loan would be $428.80. For loans that are first disbursed on or after October 1, 2014 and before October 1, 2015 is 4.292%. In this case our example for a loan origination fee on a principal loan amount of $10,000 would be $429.20.

More information regarding Federal Direct Loans can be found at https://studentaid.ed.gov/types/loans/interest-rates.

Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grants

The Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant is provided to certain students whose parent or guardian was a member of the U.S. armed forces and died as a result of military service performed in Iraq or Afghanistan after the events of 9/11. Award amounts for any Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant that is first disbursed after March 1, 2013, must be reduced by 37.8 percent from the award amount for which a recipient would otherwise have been entitled. For example, the 2013-14 maximum award of $5,645 is reduced by $2,133.81, resulting in a maximum award of $3,511.19.

Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grants

The TEACH Grant program provides grants to students who are completing, or plan to complete, coursework needed to begin a career in teaching and agree to teach, for at least four complete academic years, in a high-need field at an elementary school, secondary school, or educational service agency that serves students from low-income families. Award amounts for any TEACH Grant that is first disbursed after March 1, 2013, must be reduced by 6 percent from the award amount for which a recipient would otherwise have been eligible. For example, the maximum award of $4,000 is reduced by $240, resulting in a maximum award amount of $3,760.