To renew institutional scholarships/grants for subsequent academic years, all scholars are required to maintain specific overall minimum grade point averages (GPA) and earn at least of 30 credit hours during the academic year (fall, spring, and summer). Please note that students whose first enrollment is the spring semester - or who have deferred their scholarship for one semester - may be reviewed against a 15 earned credit hour requirement for that academic year. Starting with the next academic year, they will return to the normal requirement of 30 earned credit hours per academic year.
In addition to reviewing the renewal requirements spreadsheet, please see the other questions on this page about enrollment, earned hours, repeated coursework, and more.
Please note that a lot of the information below regarding earned hours, GPA, withdrawing from courses, etc. also applied to PROMISE Scholarship renewal for WV residents. Visit the PROMISE Scholarship Renewal website for general requirements and additional information.
- How do I keep my institutional scholarship for future years?
- How many credit hours do I need to take for my scholarship?
- What counts toward my earned credit hours?
- How does repeating courses impact my earned credit hours?
- Can withdrawing from classes impact my scholarship?
- How long can I receive my scholarship if I continue to meet renewal requirements?
- Can I appeal if I lose my institutional scholarship eligibility?
- Can I defer my institutional scholarship?
- How does taking a leave of absence impact my institutional scholarship?
How Do I Keep my Institutional Scholarship for Future Years?
To renew institutional scholarships/grants for subsequent academic years, all scholars are required to maintain specific overall minimum grade point averages (GPA) by the end of the summer semester and earn at least of 30 credit hours during the academic year (fall, spring, and summer). The required overall GPA may differ, depending on the scholarship and the student's incoming academic year.
How Many Credit Hours Do I Need to Take for my Scholarship?
Students must maintain full-time enrollment (a minimum of 12 credit hours for the semester for undergraduates) for their scholarships to disburse for the semester. If students are graduating at the end of the semester and are enrolled less than full-time, they can submit the "Institutional Scholarship Exception Request Form" available under the Forms section of our website for consideration for less than full-time disbursement. Requests are viewed on an individual basis, and approval is not guaranteed.
Important: Although 12 credit hours is full-time enrollment so your institutional scholarship will disburse, earning 24 credit hours for fall and spring will put you short of the 30 earned hours requirement for scholarship renewal. If you do not achieve the earned credits during fall and spring, you would need to take summer courses to meet earned hours requirement. If you do not want to take summer courses, you should organize your schedule so you earn at least 30 credit hours during fall and spring.
What Counts Toward my Earned Credit Hours?
It's important to understand that taking courses doesn't mean you actually earn credit hours in those courses. Some factors to consider:
- If you withdraw from a course before completing it or receive an 'F' or 'I' for the course (or another grade that does not count as earned credit hours), those courses will not count as earned credit hours for your renewal requirements.
- Repeating courses during the same academic year can also impact your earned credit hours. Credit for a course taken again during the same academic year to improve a grade or for any other purpose will only be counted once towards meeting the requirement for the 30 earned credit hours. Be advised to read over WVU's policy on repeat coursework and contact your academic advisor with any questions if you are taking or plan to take any repeat coursework during the same academic year to ensure you can still meet the earned credit hour requirement for your scholarship.
- Credits earned prior to the first semester receiving the scholarship do not count toward the earned credit hour requirement but do count toward the overall GPA. Dual enrollment courses taken during high school and credit through the Advanced Placement (AP) Program are two examples of credit that would not be used toward meeting the 30 earned credit hour requirement.
How Does Repeating Courses Impact my Earned Credit Hours?
Repeating courses during the same academic year can impact your earned credit hours. Credit for a course taken again during the same academic year to improve a grade or for any other purpose will only be counted once towards meeting the requirement for the 30 earned credit hours. Be advised to read over WVU's policy on repeat coursework and contact your academic advisor with any questions if you are taking or plan to take any repeat coursework during the same academic year to ensure you can still meet the earned credit hour requirement for your scholarship.
Can Withdrawing from Classes Impact my Scholarship?
Yes! It may impact your current and future eligibility for the scholarship.
- If you withdraw from any courses for the semester after the add/drop period has passed for the course, you will receive a 'W' for the courses. A 'W' does not count as earned credit hours toward your 30 credit hour requirement for renewal. Make sure you keep this in mind if withdrawing because you may need to add additional courses to achieve your 30 earned hours. You may consider adding mid-semester courses, adding courses for spring (if you receive the 'W' for fall), or taking summer courses.
- If you withdraw from all of your courses for the semester, your aid may be reduced. Aid is paid out with the expectation that you will finish the classes. See our Withdrawing from Courses page for the impact on your institutional scholarships/grants if you withdraw from all courses during the semester or unofficially withdraw.
How Long Can I Receive my Scholarship if I Continue to Meet Renewal Requirements?
As long as you continue to meet the renewal requirements, most institutional scholarships and grants are for a maximum of eight undergraduate semesters, or completion of a bachelor’s degree - whichever comes first. Scholarships may not be used during graduate school or to pursue a second bachelor’s degree. For some scholarships, other criteria may exist. For example, your college scholarship (from your program of study) may require you to remain in a certain major or in a major within the college.
In most instances the scholarship is not restricted to payment of tuition and fees, but may be used to cover other educational expenses such as room and board, books and supplies, etc.
Can I Appeal if I Lose my Institutional Scholarship Eligibility?
Academic standards exist for scholarships in the form of their renewal reequirements. Students are notified at the end of the spring semester if renewal requirements have not been met, and summer school may be used to attempt to make up deficiencies.
Students failing to meet renewal requirements will not have their scholarship renewed and will lose future eligibility. Students not meeting renewal requirements may appeal if they can document extenuating circumstances (such as a family, medical, or personal event which adversely affected their academic performance) by submitting the "Institutional Scholarship Exception Request Form" available under the Forms section of our website. Requests are viewed on an individual basis, and approval is not guaranteed.
Can I Defer my Institutional Scholarship?
Students may be considered for the deferral of their scholarship for a one-year period for reasons other than attendance at another post-secondary institution. Reasons for deferral may include situations such as military service or a medical issue. Students may submit the "Institutional Scholarship Exception Request Form" available under the Forms section of our website for deferral consideration. Requests must be submitted at least six weeks prior to the beginning of the semester in which the scholarship would begin. Students granted this type of deferral must reapply for admission and financial aid after the deferral period has ended. Students will retain their full award with no penalty if they enroll after the one-year period.
Students who attend another post-secondary institution, except for a WVU approved study abroad experience, forfeit their first-time freshmen scholarships. If later admitted as a Transfer Student at WVU, they will be automatically considered for Transfer Scholarships. If later admitted as a Returning Student at WVU, they may request consideration for Transfer Scholarships by submitting the Institutional Scholarship Exception Request.
Students participating in a WVU-approved study abroad experience may utilize their scholarships if they complete the Request for Transient Student Financial Aid ( Forms) and supply the WVU Credit Application completed by Academic Advising. The use of the scholarships must be credit-worthy. If approved, students will receive the same amount as if they were attending WVU. Students must continue to meet all eligibility and renewal requirements.
How Does Taking a Leave of Absence Impact my Institutional Scholarship?
Students taking an official leave of absence from the University must also request to defer their scholarship, with appropriate supporting documentation for review. Leaves of absence may be granted from the program if medical reasons exist and the student provides a written statement from a physician. For other leave of absence requests, students may submit the "Institutional Scholarship Exception Request Form" available under the Forms section of our website for consideration. Students must notify the Mountaineer Hub of their intent to enroll at least six weeks prior to returning to WVU. A student on leave of absence may typically have their eligibility extended by one academic year.