Office Of Financial Aid - James Madison University


Office of Financial Aid& ScholarshipsWinter NewsletterNovember 17, 2017Phone 540.568.7820 Fax 540.568.7994 Email fin Web Aid Eligibility and EnrollmentFederal regulations stipulate that schools can only consider classes that count towardsyour degree requirements when awarding financial aid. Classes that can be includedwhen determining financial aid eligibility are those that Office ofFinancial Aid& Scholarships738 S. Mason StreetMSC 3519Harrisonburg, VA22807Location:Student SuccessCenter, 5th aid@jmu.eduPhone:540-568-7820count toward your degree or generaleducation requirements,are required for your major,are required for your minor, orfulfill your electives to attain aminimum of 120 credit hours.In MyMadison, you will see a “Yes” or “No”under the “Eligible for Financial Aid” columnin “My Class Schedule”. If you see a “Yes” nextto one of your classes, then it will beconsidered when calculating your financialaid eligibility. Those with a “No” cannot becounted.Inside this IssueTimely Receipt of Financial Aid . 2Scholarships for 2018-19 . 2Financial Aid Videos . 2How Enrollment Changes ImpactFinancial Aid . . . . 3Student Employment . . . . 3Financial Aid Refunds . . . . . 3Deadline for Accepting Loans . . . . . 4Loan Repayment Information . 4For example, if you are registered for 12credits and nine hours are marked with a“Yes” and three hours show “No,” then youwill be considered a nine-hour student forfinancial aid purposes.Your Finances . . 4If you have a full-time course load (i.e., 12undergraduate credits) that is eligible forfinancial aid consideration, then takingadditional classes that are not eligible willhave no impact on your financial aid.Summer Financial Aid . . . 5Please view the Class and Aid Eligibility FAQ’son the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarshipswebsite to learn more about this rule. Youwill also have access to course eligibilityinformation when viewing your financial aidin MyMadison.SAP . 5How Withdrawals and “F” GradesImpact Financial Aid . 5Financial Aid on Facebook . . 5Reporting Federal Work-StudyEarnings on the FAFSA . . . 6Don’t Get Scammed . . 6Applying for 2018-19 Financial Aid . . . 7Financial Aid Q & A . . 7Repeating Courses . 8Communicating with You . . 8CashCourse is Here! . . 8Dates to Remember . . . 91

Financial Aid Newsletter Continued Course Registrationand Timely Receipt of Financial AidFinancial AidVideosCheck out our informationalvideos id.shtml. These shortvideos, most are two orthree minutes in length,cover a variety of financialaid topics including FAFSAchanges, priority filing date,award notices, parent andstudent loans, summerfinancial aid, graduatestudent aid and more.Your enrollment status can affect the timing of financial aid disbursements. If you planto enroll as a full-time student for the spring 2018 term, make sure your registration iscomplete before December 15, 2017. Otherwise, you may experience delays inreceiving your spring aid. For financial aid purposes, JMU defines full-time status as 12or more financial-aid-eligible credits per semester for undergraduates and nine ormore credit hours for graduate students.Part-time students should notify the financial aid office as early as possible, preferablybefore leaving campus for the holidays, about their planned enrollment status. You cansend an email to fin to notify us regarding your plans. This will allow usto make any necessary adjustments to your financial aid package and expedite thedelivery of your financial aid funds for the spring semester.See page one of this newsletter for information about classes that can be includedwhen determining financial aid eligibility.2018-19 Scholarship Application AvailableEach year, the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships awards a variety of scholarshipsto deserving students. If you are a current undergraduate, apply by March 1, 2018 toreceive consideration for many of the 200-plus scholarships awarded by the financialaid office. Click here to start the process or visit our website for more informationabout JMU scholarships and private sources of funding.For scholarships awarded by others, contact the JMU awarding department directly forinformation about their application timeline and -students.shtml

Financial Aid Newsletter Continued Need a Job?We are here to help you. Tolearn about both on-campusand off-campus employmentopportunities, visit theStudent Employmentwebsite or speak with amember of the StudentEmployment team at ourfifth floor office in theStudent Success Changes and Financial AidEligibilityFinancial aid disbursements generally occur during the first week of each semester forstudents who submitted all required paperwork in a timely fashion and registered forfull-time, financial-aid-eligible hours. Enrollment level plays a big part in determininga student’s financial aid eligibility. Generally, the financial aid office bases their awardpackages on the expectation that students will enroll full time. However, studentssometimes drop courses during the first week. When students drop to part time, theirawards may change. Also, your awards could change if some of your courses are notfinancial aid eligible. See the article on page one of this newsletter for moreinformation.The financial aid office conducts an enrollment audit each semester following theadd/drop period. During this audit, the office identifies those students whoseenrollment status changed from full time to part time and recalculates their financialaid eligibility. If JMU must reduce financial aid funds already received by the student,then he or she may owe a bill. The enrollment audit date for spring 2018 is January 16.Students who receive approval to add one or more courses after the enrollment auditdate cannot receive an increase in funds from the Federal Pell Grant Program.Therefore, for this particular program, a student’s enrollment at the end of the day onJanuary 16, 2018 will determine his or her eligibility for spring semester with noadjustments possible.Financial AidRefundsVisit the University BusinessOffice website forinformation about therefunding more by reviewing one (hypothetical) student’s experience.Myles’ (Standish) SituationAt the beginning of the spring semester, the financial aid office considers Myles afull-time (i.e., 12 or more financial-aid-eligible hours) undergraduate.January 4, 2018 – The financial aid office disburses all of Myles’ financial aid basedon full-time enrollment.January 11, 2018 – Myles drops to nine credit hours.January 17, 2018 – Since Myles did not increase his hours to full time, the financialaid office recalculates his entire financial aid package based on part-timeenrollment.The ResultThe financial aid office determined that Myles’ disbursed funds, based on full-timeenrollment, exceeded allowable limits for a part-time student. Therefore, JMUreduced financial aid funds, which resulted in a bill for Myles.Contact a financial aid counselor if you have questions about your circumstances.3

Financial Aid Newsletter Continued Deadline for Accepting Loansis Approaching!Take Control ofYour FinancesAre you familiar withcreating a personal budget?Can you balance yourchecking account? Do youunderstand how credit cardswork? Do you know yourFICO score? If you aretaking out loans to help payfor college, do you have aplan for managing your debtafter graduation? Weaddress these questions andmany more in financialliteracy training offered bythe Office of Financial Aidand Scholarships.Visit our website l andread about a variety oftimely topics.Federal Loans for the fall term only must be certified by the last day of the fallterm. This means students must accept their loans in MyMadison by close of businesson December 14th in order for the loan to be processed for the fall term. Parent andGraduate PLUS Loan applications take longer to process than subsidized orunsubsidized loans, so these applications must be submitted by close of businessDecember 4th and additional forms must be submitted by close of businessDecember 14th for the loan to be processed for the fall term. Students and/or parentsmust also continue to meet all other eligibility requirements to receive the loan funds,so submission of the acceptance by these dates does not guarantee receipt of thefunds. Submission by these dates only means that we will process the loan on yourbehalf, but if the borrower is not meeting the eligibility requirements at the time of thedisbursement then the loan will be canceled.We will do our best to process any applications or MyMadison accepted loans up toclose of business on the 15th; however, we cannot guarantee we will be able to processany loans that are accepted after the dates provided above. Under no circumstancescan we process fall only loans after December 15th.All of the information and dates outlined above also applies to the acceptance and/orloan application submission for academic year loans (fall/spring loans combined intoone loan) if a student is not planning on returning for the spring term.Loan Repayment: Who Ya Gonna Call?You can learn more about your current loan status and your options for repaymentfrom our website. The loan repayment section focuses primarily on federal studentloans and includes a link to the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS), where youcan retrieve your federal loan history.For questions about your specific loan, you will need to contact your loan servicer. Aloan servicer is a financial institution that administers student loans, which includesbilling the borrower and accepting payment. You can identify your servicer(s) throughthe NSLDS by looking up your individual loans. While the federal government tries tokeep all of your Direct Loans with a single servicer, you should review the loan historyof each of your loans in NSLDS to determine their individual statuses.We highly recommend you review the information on our website, as it will give youthe best idea of what to expect when your repayment period begins. In addition, weinclude links to information regarding consolidation, repayment plans, loan forgivenessand general financial literacy.If you have taken out a private loan, you should contact your lender directly regardingloan shtml4

Financial Aid Newsletter Continued Join Us onFacebookThe Office of Financial Aidand Scholarships has joinedFacebook! For informationregarding important updatesand deadlines, please “Like”the JMU Financial Aid page.Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)All undergraduate and graduate students must meet Satisfactory Academic Progress(SAP) requirements to receive financial aid. Federal regulations require eachinstitution to have a SAP policy, which establishes the minimum standards for financialaid eligibility. We developed the Undergraduate SAP Estimator to help studentsdetermine whether their academic progress meets the requirements to receivefinancial aid. For a detailed description of JMU’s requirements and to use the onlineestimator, visit our website at Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships measures your academic progress onceper year. If you are unable to meet SAP requirements, you could lose your eligibilityfor financial aid, including federal loans. Students may appeal denial of financial aid.Academic progress standards for financial aid differ from those used by the universityto determine your eligibility for continued enrollment. Therefore, in many cases,students denied financial aid could continue taking classes. These students wouldneed to arrange for alternative funding to pay university charges.Summer 2018Financial AidInformation about applyingfor summer financial aid willappear in our February 2018newsletter. Watch youremail or the financial aidwebsite for this newsletter.In the meantime, your firststep should be filing the2018-19 Free Applicationfor Federal Student Aid(FAFSA). Make sure yousubmit your application tothe federal governmentearly enough to ensurereceipt by March 1, 2018.Contact the financial aid office if you have any questions about SAP.Withdrawals and “F” Grades Can AffectFinancial Aid EligibilityWithdrawing from one class or from all of your classes within a given term can affectyour eligibility for financial assistance now and in the future. Likewise, earning all “F”grades can affect your current and future eligibility. To comply with federal regulations,the financial aid office may need to reduce or cancel previously disbursed financial aid.This immediate consequence could cause you to owe the university money. For thefuture, withdrawing or earning “F” grades could result in your inability to meetSatisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) requirements. Students who fail to meet SAPstandards cannot receive financial aid. Use our online SAP Estimator to determinewhether your academic progress meets requirements.Learn more about the consequences of withdrawal and “F” grades by reading “JMUTerms & Conditions for Financial Aid” under the “Quick Links” heading on our website.View SAP requirements at tact the financial aid office if you have any questions about how withdrawals or “F”grades might affect you.5

Financial Aid Newsletter Continued Don’t GetScammed!Beware of privatebusinesses that offer toassist you with applying forfinancial aid or scholarshipsfor a fee. Financial aidinformation is available tostudents and parents free ofcharge. When in doubt,contact your financial aidoffice. We are here to helpyou.Reporting Federal Work-StudyEarnings on your FAFSATake steps to ensure that 2016 calendar year Federal Work-Study (FWS) earnings donot affect your eligibility for need-based financial aid next year. If reported correctlyon your 2018-19 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), the federalprocessor will exclude FWS earnings when calculating your ability to pay educationalexpenses.Follow these instructions when you fill out the FAFSA to record your FWS earningsproperly.1. Determine your 2016 calendar year (i.e., January 1, 2016 toDecember 31, 2016) FWS earnings. You can find paycheck informationthrough MyMadison (Click on the EMPLOYEE tab!) or on your W-2 formprovided by the JMU Office of Payroll Services. Employers mail W-2 forms tothe home address in mid to late January.2. Report all earnings from January 1, 2016 to December 31, 2016 in the adjustedgross income (AGI) box of the FAFSA. Your AGI includes FWS earnings as wellas any income from other jobs.3. Another question on the FAFSA will ask you to report just your FWS earningsfrom January 1, 2016 to December 31, 2016. The earnings you report here willnot count toward determining your financial aid eligibility.Note: If you had two or more jobs at JMU during the 2016 calendar year, pleasecontact Student Employment to receive assistance with calculating your total FWSearnings.Fall at JMU6

Financial Aid Newsletter Continued Financial AidQ&AQ: Where can I learn moreabout the financial aidrules at JMU?A: You can find answers tomost of your questions onour website by reading “Terms andConditions - ConsumerInformation” under the“Quick Links” heading onour website.Q: I don’t have regularaccess to a computer, soit’s hard for me to reviewinformation on your website, what can I do?A: All of the informationpublished on our website isavailable in print form aswell. If you prefer paper,please contact our office.Q: Can I access myfinancial aid funds topurchase my books for thespring 2018 semester?Apply for 2018-19 Financial Aid NOW!The 2018-19 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is available now. Toensure you receive priority consideration for all types of financial assistance, thefederal government must receive your 2018-19 FAFSA by March 1, 2018. This is JMU’spriority filing date. In some cases, filing later can reduce your chances of receivingcertain types of financial aid, including state grants.Remember that your FAFSA will collect 2016 tax information. Whenever possible, werecommend that students and parents use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool (DRT) totransfer data directly into their FAFSA from the IRS website. This makes the processof completing the FAFSA less cumbersome and reduces the likelihood that you will beselected for verification. (Students selected for verification must provide our officewith certain documentation to show that their FAFSA is correct.) At the very least, useof the IRS DRT will reduce the amount of supplemental information we need to collectto complete the verification process.If you filed a FAFSA for the current school year, make sure it includes your currentemail address. Otherwise, you may not receive important information from theDepartment of Education regarding your ability to submit a Renewal FAFSA for the2018-19 school year. Since the Renewal FAFSA includes many of the answers that youprovided on your prior year application, you will have fewer questions to answer. Ifyou are unsure of the email address on file with the Department of Education, reviewyour 2017-18 FAFSA at Make sure to update your mailing and emailaddresses as soon as possible so you will receive the Renewal FAFSA reminders fromthe Department of Education.You can view the brief “FAFSA Changes” video in the Financial Aid Video section of ourwebsite for more information.A: Students should not counton using financial aidrefunds to buy textbooks.Unexpected delays canoccur. Some circumstancesthat may cause delaysinclude less than full-timeenrollment, late registrationfor classes and not usingdirect deposit.Q: What will happen if Ijust stop going to classwithout officiallywithdrawing?A: You could fail the classand risk losing some or all ofyour financial aid.7

Financial Aid Newsletter Continued Repeated Courseworkand Financial Aid EligibilityFederal regulations limit the number of times undergraduate students can receivefinancial aid for repeating coursework. The general rule is students may only receivefinancial aid for repeating a course one time after previously passing the same classwith a grade of “D” or better.Consider the following example. CashCourse isHere!JMU has partnered with theNational Endowment forFinancial Education (NEFE ) to offerCashCourse to our students.CashCourse is a free onlineresource created by NEFE to help college studentslearn the basics of handlingmoney. The program coverstopics such as budgeting,identity theft, credit,banking, savings and othertopics. The site even offersworksheets and on-line toolsto help students begin theprocess of takingresponsibility for theirfinances.Students can accessCashCourse, as well as otheruseful financial literacyinformation, by going l. Fall 2016 - A student takes a class and receives a grade of “C” (course is eligiblefor aid).Spring 2017 - The student repeats the same class (course is eligible for aid).Fall 2017 - The student registers for the same course once again to try for abetter grade (course is INELIGIBLE for aid).In this example, if the student registered for 12 credit hours for fall 2017 and three ofthose credits represented an ineligible repeated course, then the student’s financialaid eligibility would be based on nine credit hours for that term. This is trueregardless of the reason (want or need) for repeating the course.Additionally, eligibility for the first two attempts (fall 2016 and spring 2017) iscontingent on the student meeting all of the other general eligibility requirements forfinancial aid. This rule applies to undergraduate students only.Communicatingwith Students and ParentsYou, the student, are the primary point of contact for the Office of Financial Aid andScholarships. Therefore, you cannot rely on your parents to keep track of the FAFSApriority filing date, scholarship application deadline or information our office requeststo process your financial aid.Your James Madison University email ( email account) serves as one oftwo official methods our office uses to communicate with you. (The other one isMyMadison.) If you currently redirect email sent to your official JMU emailaddress/account to another email provider, you should not use this option to sendcorrespondence to the financial aid office. Please use your JMU email address to sendan official message to us. In addition, when you submit your email message,remember to include your name and your JMU student identification number. Thisinformation helps us provide better service to you.When students choose to use a non-JMU email service, which includes redirectingemail sent to their official JMU email address/account to another email service, wecannot assume any message received reflects their wishes. Therefore, an unavoidabledelay may result. With official JMU email ( email account), you providean electronic signature that authorizes us to take the desired action on your behalf.Remember that you should always include your name and student identificationnumber with any correspondence.8

Financial Aid Newsletter Continued Dates toRememberNOW!- File your 2018-19 FAFSA.December 4, 2017- Last day to apply for a fall2017 (fall only) FederalParent PLUS DirectLoan/Federal Grad PLUSDirect LoanDecember 14, 2017- Last day to submitadditional information for afall 2017 (fall only) Parentor Graduate PLUS Loan- Last day to accept a fall2017 (fall only) FederalDirect Loan in MyMadisonJanuary 22, 2018- Satisfactory AcademicProgress (SAP) appealdeadline for spring 2018March 1, 2018- FAFSA priority filing datefor 2018-19- Scholarship applicationdeadline for 2018-19Review consumerdisclosure information,financial aid policies andprocedures and findmore answers tofrequently askedquestionson our website tml9

At the beginning of the spring semester, the financial aid office considers Myles a full-time (i.e., 12 or more financial-aid-eligible hours) undergraduate. January 4, 2018 - The financial aid office disburses all of yles' financial aid based on full-time enrollment. January 11, 2018 - Myles drops to nine credit hours.