2016-2017 FINANCIAL AID GUIDE FOR DAY UNDERGRADUATES CONTENTS Welcome  2 Determining your Financial Aid Award  3 Student Accounts and Billing 3 F...
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CONTENTS Welcome  2 Determining your Financial Aid Award  3 Student Accounts and Billing


Financial Aid Package  4 Financial Aid Resources 


Payment Information  9 Policies  10 Frequently Asked Questions  13


Bertrand Hall, Room 105





[email protected]

50 Acacia Avenue San Rafael, CA 94901-2298




Admissions 888-323-6763


Federal Direct Stafford Loan Promissory Note and Loan Entrance Counseling must be completed by new borrowers at

June 15

Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan or Private Loans must be applied for and approved by this date to allow for enough time for processing to meet the billing due date

July 6

First billing statements for the Fall Semester are mailed out

August 1

Fall Semester payment due. Late fees are assessed for past due balances

December 5 First billing statements for the Spring Semester are mailed out

January 1 Spring Semester payment due. Late fees are assessed for past due balances

Jan 1-Mar 2 Apply for Financial Aid at, making sure to list

Dominican University using school code: 001196 (priority deadline)

January 30 Last day to add a class for Spring Semester without penalty*   * Students receiving Pell or Cal Grants must be

enrolled full-time (at least 12 units) or awards will be prorated based on registered units as of this date.

September 6 Last day to add a class for Fall Semester without penalty*



WELCOME Welcome to the 2016–2017 academic year at Dominican University of California! Investing in a quality education from Dominican will change the rest of your life. It will be enriched by our exceptional professors, use of our facilities, partaking in extracurricular activities, and creating new friendships. This guide will help you to understand the financial aid process, your award and the billing process, as well as planning for and managing your costs. As you read this guide, you will learn about the different financial aid programs, along with your rights and responsibilities as a financial aid recipient. We are here to help! The staff in the Office of Financial Aid strives to guide students and families through one of the most complex aspects of college enrollment—managing college costs. Our mission is to enable the success of students at Dominican by providing accurate and efficient services while distributing limited financial aid resources in a fair and equitable manner. Financial aid advising on the application process and availability of aid; processing of scholarships, grants, loans, and work study; and information on finding external resources of financial aid are all services provided by Dominican’s Office of Financial Aid.



THE VALUE OF A DOMINICAN EDUCATION The value of a Dominican education extends well beyond your college years and investing in your education is one of the most important and worthwhile decisions you and your family will make. The Office of Financial Aid understands that financing an education and managing college costs can seem challenging. The good news is that our students receive significant financial support from a variety of sources including Dominican scholarships and grants, Federal and State grants, Federal and Private loans, work study and external agency support. In fact, more than 75% of students at Dominican receive aid to help manage college costs, and more than 90% of undergraduate freshmen receive scholarship and/or grant aid. Instead of only looking at the cost of attending Dominican, we encourage you to also think about the overall value. Since Fall 1992, the University has guaranteed graduation from certain undergraduate degree programs within four years of matriculation (initial enrollment) for any student who selects a major by the end of the freshman year, persists in that major and successfully completes a full-time course load. This means that you will not spend more money or time than necessary to complete your four-year bachelor’s degree. Additionally, consider the small class size where you can interact and learn with faculty and your fellow students.

DETERMINING YOUR FINANCIAL AID AWARD Your financial aid package consists of all awards available to you based on your eligibility. Your package will include some, but not all of the awards mentioned in this guide. Some awards have specific qualifications and limits; however, we will ensure that you receive the maximum amount of financial aid for which you are eligible. Your financial aid package is based on the Estimated Family Contribution (EFC) that is calculated upon the completion of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The EFC acts as an index number to determine where you fall within packaging guidelines. Your family’s actual contribution may be more or less than your EFC depending on your eligibility for different financial aid programs. The EFC is made up of your family’s income, assets (excluding primary residence), cash/checking/savings, age of older parent and his/her need for retirement income, number in the family and number in college.

Your financial aid package is also based on the costs for a student to attend Dominican University minus the EFC (Cost of Education – EFC = financial aid eligibility). It is important to remember, when comparing financial aid packages from different schools, to look at both the costs and the financial aid package. The cost to attend college varies from institution to institution.

DISBURSEMENT OF FINANCIAL AID All loans and institutional grants will be disbursed at the beginning of the semester. Pell Grants and Cal Grants will not be disbursed until after the add/drop date of each semester. It is important to be in the correct number of units by the last day to add/drop a class in each semester. Your Pell Grant and Cal Grant will be disbursed based on your enrollment at this point in time and no adjustments will be made afterwards.

STUDENT ACCOUNTS AND BILLING The Business Services Office maintains a student account for every student at Dominican University of California. Each student receives a student account statement that bills them for tuition, fees, room and board. These charges are expected to be paid in full or payment arrangements made by August 1 for the Fall Semester and January 1 for the Spring Semester. Room and board charges depend on the student’s chosen meal plan and room selection. A Parent PLUS Loan, Private Loan, outside scholarships and/ or monthly payments can be used to cover the remaining charges. Be advised: any loan will automatically be split



between the Fall and Spring Semesters unless you request otherwise of a Financial Aid Advisor. When applying for a loan make certain to request an amount that will cover the entire year. DO NOT include your Federal Work Study against your charges. Work Study enables you to earn a semi-monthly pay check that can be used for other educational expenses. It is important to incorporate indirect costs, such as books and supplies into the amount that will be needed to be covered for the year. Dominican averages these costs to be $1,790 for the year.



FINANCIAL AID PACKAGE FAMILY EDUCATION RIGHTS AND PRIVACY ACT (FERPA) The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, as amended (also sometimes known as the Buckley Amendment), is a law protecting the privacy of student records. Dominican University complies with this law to safeguard students’ personal information. The Office of Financial Aid will not release any student information without written consent of the student. Any student who wants to have his/her information shared with a parent(s), spouse, other family member or designated person must complete the FERPA Release Form and submit it to the Office of Financial Aid. The FERPA Release Form is available on-line at There are exceptions in the release of educational records. The exceptions include school officials who Dominican has determined to have a legitimate educational interest, school officials at other schools where the student intends to enroll and access for the purpose of awarding financial aid and subpoenas.

TENTATIVE AWARDS Financial aid awards are provided to entering freshmen who meet the March 2 FAFSA filing priority deadline. This will enable you to meet your national deposit deadline of May 1st. However, some students are selected for a process called verification. If you have been selected for verification, your award is subject to change pending the completion of the verification process. Once the FAFSA information has been verified for accuracy, you will receive a final award letter. During the verification process, your aid may change as corrections are made to the submitted FAFSA.

VERIFICATION Verification, required by the Department of Education (ED), requires Financial Aid Administrators to verify the information reported on the FAFSA by students and their families. The Office of Financial Aid at Dominican is required to verify the financial aid applicants selected by ED. As part of the verification process, Dominican requires that the student, and parents of dependent students, complete a Verification Worksheet and provide Federal income tax information. Financial aid applicants and their parents can either elect to use the FAFSA-IRS Data Retrieval process that transfers IRS data to the FAFSA, either at the time of initial FAFSA on the Web (FOTW) filing or later using the FAFSA corrections process. When this FAFSA-IRS Data Retrieval process



has been used, the verification of income requirement will have been met as long as the data was not subsequently changed. Those who choose not to use the FAFSA-IRS Data Retrieval process, as well as those who were not eligible to use the process, will be required to submit a 2015 Tax Return Transcript (copies of the 1040 will not be accepted). If the student and/or parent(s) are not required to file a Federal tax return for 2015 because their income was below the filing requirement, W-2’s (if applicable) from each employer will need to be submitted. All employers will also need to be listed on the Verification Worksheet. In some cases we may also ask for additional documentation such as asset information or verification of family expenses and how they are met. If the necessary documentation is not submitted in a timely manner, the final financial aid award can be delayed. For students and parents who have requested Tax Extensions, please contact the Office of Financial Aid regarding alternate documentation. All documents must be submitted prior to the end of the enrollment period or withdrawal from the University for any accrued charges to be covered with federal, state or institutional aid.

COST OF ATTENDANCE (BUDGET) Each student’s Cost of Attendance is based on direct charges a student is billed (such as tuition, fees, room and board) and indirect charges not billed but a student will still incur (such as books, supplies, personal expenses and transportation). These charges are estimates of a typical student. We understand that each student may have different costs based on where the student lives and the meal plan that is chosen. The student is expected to assume the expense if the costs exceed the standard budget. Some exceptions can be made and each student will need to inquire with a Financial Aid Advisor. If a student’s financial aid exceeds his/her charges, the difference can be taken out in the form of a refund. Business Services will automatically refund any credit balance due to the student. At the direction of the student, excess funds can also remain on the account to pay for the upcoming semester.

REAPPLYING FOR FINANCIAL AID It is the student’s responsibility to reapply for financial aid each year by March 2 and use Dominican’s school code (001196) on the FAFSA. A student’s financial aid package is valid for that award year only therefore, each student must reapply each year by the March 2 deadline to be considered for financial aid in subsequent years. It is important to meet this deadline as some financial aid funds are limited and ontime applicants are given first priority. Late financial aid filers

are not guaranteed the same funding level as the prior year due to limited funding of some programs.

Circumstances that will not be considered:

There are some factors that may result in a change to a student’s financial aid package from one year to the next.

– Private elementary/high school tuition

Some of these factors include: – Late submission of required applications or requested documents – Changes in family size or number of dependents in college – Changes in living arrangements such as moving from oncampus to off-campus – The discovery of errant information reported on the FAFSA that causes corrections to be made and a new award package to be determined

– High consumer debt such as credit cards

– Prenuptial agreements that dismiss the step-parents responsibility to contribute to the student’s educational expenses. The Department of Education does not recognize prenuptial agreements. If there is a step-parent involved, his/her financial information is considered when determining the student’s financial aid package. – The refusal of a parent to contribute to their student’s educational endeavor. The Department of Education has an expectation that the parental information will be collected on the FAFSA. If the student is determined to be a dependent student, the FAFSA measures the parents’ ability, not willingness, to contribute to their student’s educational costs.

– A change in Federal or State law or University policy – If you are unable to meet the guidelines established by the Office of Financial Aid to be eligible for financial aid

SPECIAL CIRCUMSTANCES Each student’s financial aid package is determined by the information supplied on the FAFSA, which consists of prior year income information. For some families, this is not a true reflection of their current financial standing. For these families there is a process called professional judgment where the Office of Financial Aid can take into consideration special circumstances that the family is facing. Some of these circumstances include loss of income, medical/dental expenses, divorce, separation or death. Should a family have special circumstances, the Financial Circumstances Appeal Form can be found at: It is important that the family submit all necessary supporting documentation outlined in the form in order to qualify for an adjustment in a financial aid package. In many cases, an adjustment will result in a decrease in the family’s EFC and therefore qualify them for additional grants/scholarships. In some cases, if the income information reported on the FAFSA is inaccurate, a student’s EFC could increase, resulting in a reduction to the financial aid package. All requests are reviewed by the Financial Aid Committee and results are usually available within two weeks. In order to qualify for a review of your financial aid award, there must be a FAFSA on file.

CORRECTIONS MADE TO THE FAFSA If a FAFSA is filed using estimated income, students, and parents of dependent students, are encouraged to update their income information by using the FAFSA-IRS Data Retrieval process. After the 2015 income tax return has been submitted, the FAFSA-IRS Data Retrieval process can be completed by going online and using the appropriate PIN number. If an error was made when filing the FAFSA, corrections can be made in one of two ways: – For electronic submissions, corrections can be made to items that do not state “as of the day you filed the FAFSA” by going online to and using the appropriate PIN number. – Written requests can be submitted to the Office of Financial Aid, outlining the necessary changes, including the appropriate supporting documentation. Any updates/ changes will be made and submitted electronically to the Department of Education.



FINANCIAL AID RESOURCES Below is a list of grant and scholarship awards that may appear in a student’s financial aid award package. There are certain criteria associated with these awards and not every student will qualify for every award. Each student is packaged with the maximum institutional awards based on his/her eligibility.

GRANTS Dominican Grants are awarded to students based on financial need, academic standing and availability of funds. Priority is given to students who meet the March 2 FAFSA deadline. Federal Pell Grants are awarded based on the calculated EFC as determined from FAFSA. When a FAFSA is filed, a family’s eligibility is automatically considered. The 2016–2017 Pell Grant awards are expected to range from $591 to $5,815 depending on the student’s EFC. Every year the Department of Education sets funding levels and eligibility requirements, and these amounts are subject to change. Note: The amount of $5,382.30 will be given for any Pell Grant eligible student whose parent or guardian died as a result of military service in Iraq or Afghanistan after Sept.11, 2001. You must be under 24 years old or enrolled at least part-time in college at the time of your parent’s or guardian’s death. Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG) is awarded to students who are eligible for a Pell Grant and have met the March 2 FAFSA priority deadline. This grant is limited and subject to the availability of funds. CAL Grants are funded by the state of California and administered by the California Student Aid Commission (CSAC). CSAC provides funding to low and middle income students who submit a FAFSA and GPA Verification by the March 2 deadline. Typically, a student is determined to be eligible if they are below the income and asset ceilings that are established by CSAC each year and meet the minimum cumulative GPA. Students can check their eligibility status by going online to: The Yellow Ribbon Program is available to any degree seeking student who submits a Certificate of Eligibility (COE) from the Veterans Administration (VA) into our veteran liaison in the Registrar’s Office. For the 2015–2016 academic year, Post9/11 GI Bill benefits cover $21,084-89 per academic year. The Yellow Ribbon Program can be utilized for tuition and fees above the $21,084.89 Through the Yellow Ribbon Program, Dominican and the VA will cover the remaining net cost for tuition and fees for undergraduates. Merit Scholarships and



Cal Grants are deducted from the tuition and fee costs to come up with the net amount. The combination of Post 9/11 GI Bill, Yellow Ribbon, Cal Grants and Dominican aid will not exceed the costs of tuition and fees. Federal TEACH Grants are available to students who intend to complete a teaching certificate program. Eligible students must file a FAFSA and be a Liberal Studies major, or can be in another major if the student documents in writing their intent to go into a credential program after the bachelors degree has been received. New undergraduates must have a high school GPA of at least 3.25, or a test score above the 75th percentile. This award has an annual limit of $3,728 per academic year, which can be renewed as long as the renewal GPA is met, with a total aggregate limit of $16,000. For more information go to:

SCHOLARSHIPS Merit Scholarships are awarded by the Admissions Office at the time of admission and determined by the student’s academic accomplishments as demonstrated by their GPA and SAT/ACT scores. All merit awards for freshmen are renewable for up to three additional years beyond the initial awarding year, provided the terms and conditions of the award are met. Transfer students have an additional two years of eligibility. – Trustee: Maximum award of up to $23,000 for freshmen and $12,000 for transfers per year. The minimum renewal GPA for this award is a 3.0 cumulative. – Presidential: Maximum award of up to $20,000 for freshmen and $10,000 for transfers per year. The minimum renewal GPA for this award is a 2.7 cumulative. – Deans: Maximum award of up to $16,000 for freshmen and $8,000 for transfers per year. The minimum renewal GPA for this award is a 2.7 cumulative. – Honors Scholarship: Maximum award of up to $2,000 per year for freshmen only. The minimum renewal GPA for this award is a 3.5 cumulative.

Coaches Awards are awarded to student-athletes who are determined eligible by the appropriate athletic coach. The student-athlete’s athletic coach will determine the level of award based on their budget and the student-athlete’s athletic ability. Students doing a study abroad or semester away will not be eligible for this award. Music Scholarships are awarded by the Music Department based on an audition. Students may be awarded up to $2,000 per academic year and are renewable for up to three years beyond the initial awarding year. Auditions are scheduled through the Department of Music , Dance and Performing Arts.

OUTSIDE SCHOLARSHIPS Outside scholarships are awarded by private sources directly to students. These scholarships come from a variety of donors who set their own terms and conditions for awarding and renewal. It is the responsibility of the student to notify the Office of Financial Aid when it is known a scholarship has been awarded. In most circumstances, outside scholarships are added to the existing financial aid award. In some circumstances as per federal guidelines, some existing aid will need to be reduced to stay within the student’s financial need or Cost of Attendance. When existing aid is required to be reduced, self-help aid in the form of loans and work study will be reduced before any grants or scholarships. For more information about current outside scholarships, please visit the financial aid website at:

WORK OPPORTUNITY AWARDS Federal Work Study is awarded to students who complete the FAFSA. When a student applies for financial aid they are automatically considered for the Federal Work Study Program. The Financial Aid Award Letter will notify the student of the maximum amount to be earned for the academic year. Awards range from $1,000 to $2,750 per year. Depending on the student’s rate of pay and hours worked, all of the award may or may not be earned.

Work Study earnings are not applied directly to the tuition bill, but can be used at the student’s discretion to cover educational expenses such as books, fees, personal items and expenses. The awarding of Federal Work Study does not guarantee the student a job. It is up to the student to pursue and obtain employment opportunities. Dominican holds a Student Employment Fair at the beginning of each academic year in which supervisors and students have an opportunity to connect. Open positions are also posted in Bertrand Hall and online at

LOANS Loans can be very helpful for students and families in managing college costs. Many families find that loans are a useful and important resource because they help spread educational costs over a longer period of time. We encourage students and families to carefully weigh the need for loans and to borrow only what they actually need. Unlike the aid programs previously mentioned, loans must be repaid.

FEDERAL PERKINS LOAN Perkins Loans are low-interest student loans funded by the federal government and administered by Dominican University of California. If you are eligible for a Perkins Loan based on your FAFSA and other aid application documents, the Perkins loan will be listed on your award letter from the Office of Financial Aid. An award typically ranges between $500 and $2,000 annually. Available funding is limited, therefore priority is given to undergraduate day program underclassmen with significant financial need. Perkins Loans have a 0% interest rate while you are enrolled in college at least half-time (six units or above) and during a nine-month grace period after you leave school. Repayment begins at the end of the grace period and lasts for a period of ten years, during which interest is charged at 5.0%. You can apply for a deferment if you enroll in graduate school, become unemployed, or meet other conditions specified on your promissory note.

Institutional Work Study is available to undergraduate day students that have not been awarded Federal Work Study. Some on-campus departments will hire students without a Federal Work Study award. These limited positions are determined by the individual department’s budget and job availability.

Financial Aid Resources continues on next page





There are two types of Stafford Loans, Subsidized and Unsubsidized. A Subsidized Stafford Loan means that the government is paying or “subsidizing” the interest for the student and no payment is required as long as the student is enrolled at least half-time (six units or above); this includes graduate school. There is a six-month grace period at which time the payments for principal and interest are deferred, but interest begins to accrue. Once the student has exhausted the one time grace period, the student is required to begin making payments on both the principal and interest. The Unsubsidized Stafford Student Loan is almost the same with an important exception: the student is responsible for the interest that accrues while enrolled. Each student has the choice to make quarterly interest payments or defer both the principal and interest until after graduation or enrollment drops below half-time. If the interest is deferred, it will accrue and add on to the principal at repayment. Most students will receive both the Subsidized and Unsubsidized loans as part of their financial aid package.

The maximum amount a student can borrow in the Stafford Loan Program depends upon grade level. As students advance in grade level, their eligibility to borrow under the Stafford Loan Program increases. A student may be packaged with both the Subsidized and Unsubsidized Stafford or all Unsubsidized Stafford. The following loan limits apply to all or a combination of the Stafford Loans:

If a student is 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 a student can receive a 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 the student’s program. A typical undergraduate Dominican student can receive a Direct Subsidized Loan for six years (150 percent of 4 years = 6 years). The six years may include attendance from any prior institution. The interest on all Stafford Loans is at a fixed interest rate. Additionally, there is an origination fee charged at disbursement. Below is the interest rate and fee schedule for all Stafford Loans disbursed after July 1, 2015.

Undergraduate Students Subsidized


Federal Fees




* As of the print date for this brochure, 4.29% will be the fixed interest rate for loans borrowed after July 1, 2015. Interest rates are calculated using the 10-Year Treasury note from the period leading up to July 1, 2016 plus 2.05% with an interest rate cap of 8.25%. The exact rate charged for 2016 – 2017 will not be determined until June 1, but will then be locked in based on the Treasury note yield.



Maximum Stafford Subsidized Loan Eligibility Total Freshman $3,500





Junior $5,500


Senior $5,500


ADDITIONAL UNSUBSIDIZED STAFFORD When parents of dependent students apply for a Parent PLUS Loan and are denied, students are then eligible to borrow an additional Unsubsidized Stafford Loan. Additional Unsubsidized Loan amounts are as follows: Freshman and Sophomore


Junior and Senior


Grade levels for loan limits are determined by the number of units a student has completed. Freshman

0-29 units


30-59 units


60-89 units


90+ units



A monthly billing notification on all active student accounts is mailed to the student’s billing address. In accordance with the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), University representatives will not disclose any specific information about a student’s account with any third party (including family members) without the student’s explicit written permission. Although the University will accept payments from a third party, the student is responsible for settling all debts to the university by the appropriate deadlines. Students can always view their account balances online using the Self-Service portal.

This loan option is available to parents of dependent students who are creditworthy, regardless of income. This loan program allows a parent to apply for a loan in the amount up to the student’s Cost of Attendance less financial aid. This loan has a fixed interest rate of 6.84%*. The Parent PLUS Loan also has a loan processing fee of 4.272%. This means that the desired loan amount needs to be increased by 4.272% to accommodate the fees. For example, if $5,000 is needed to cover the student account balance, the amount applied for should be $5,223 (5,000/95.73%) to cover the cost of the fees. It is recommended that parents borrow the amount needed for the entire year. Unless otherwise communicated to the Office of Financial Aid, all Parent PLUS Loans will be divided evenly between the Fall and Spring Semesters. For more information about the Parent PLUS Loan visit

GENERAL PAYMENT TERM Payments are due in full, by August 1 for Fall Semester, January 1 for Spring Semester, and June 1 for Summer Semester. If unable to pay in full by the due dates, a student may participate in a Payment Plan.

PAYMENT PLAN A Payment Plan is available to enrolled students who do not have any past due balances. Students may make monthly installment payments throughout the semester, but will be assessed a finance fee. Payments are due on the 1st of each month and begin August 1 for Fall Semester, January 1 for Spring Semester, and June 1 for Summer Semester. Balances may be divided into no more than 4 payments for Fall and Spring Semesters, and no more than 2 payments for Summer Semester. Dominican charges a finance fee of 0.83% per month on the unpaid balance and a late charge of $50.00 will be assessed each month if the minimum monthly payment has not been received by the first day of the month.

*As of the print date for this brochure, 6.84% will be the fixed interest rate for loans borrowed after July 1, 2015. Interest rates are calculated using the 10-Year Treasury note from the period leading up to July 1, 2016 plus 4.60%, with an interest rate cap of 10.5%. The exact rate charged for 2016 – 2017 will not be determined until June 1, but will then be locked in based on the Treasury note yield.

PRIVATE LOANS Private educational loans have become a popular option for some students and their families. Generally, undergraduate students need a credit-worthy co-signer for private educational loan approval. The Office of Financial Aid maintains a list of private lenders with rates and loan repayment favorable for Dominican students. For more information about private loans, visit our website at

METHODS OF PAYMENT Students may pay their accounts either with cash, check, electronic check or money order. Dominican charges a $50 returned check fee if a check is returned by the bank. Payments may be made: ONLINE: Students may login to and click “Finance” to make a payment. For further details, visit BY MAIL: Please do not send cash through the mail. IN PERSON: Students may come to the Business Services Office in Bertrand Hall, Room 103.



POLICIES ENROLLMENT POLICY Each student’s award is based on full-time enrollment (at least 12 units a semester). Your eligibility may be affected if you change your enrollment plans, and funds may be adjusted, rescinded or returned if you do not enroll as expected. Full-time enrollment is required to receive most Dominican Scholarships and Grants, except as noted.

REPEATING COURSEWORK If a student has taken and passed a course (receiving a grade of D or higher), Federal financial aid will only pay for that course to be repeated one more time. Should a student decide to enroll in a successfully passed course for a third time, Federal financial aid will not cover the cost of that course. This policy also applies for Nursing students even though a grade of B or higher is required to progress in the program. A student can continue to receive aid for a particular course until the student receives a passing grade (something other than an F, UF, I or W) for that course. Once the passing grade is received, Federal financial aid will only pay for one more repeat of that course. With that said, a student still only has four-years, less for a transfer student, of institutional aid eligibility. Additionally, a student needs to maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress toward a degree to qualify for financial aid. Transfer classes do not count in determining repeated coursework. Only coursework taken at Dominican will be looked at under this policy.

WITHDRAWAL POLICY For financial aid purposes, Withdrawals and Leave of Absences are treated the same when determining eligibility. Students planning to Withdraw from the University are encouraged to make an appointment with their academic advisor prior to initiating the withdrawal procedures. Dominican’s “official Withdrawal office” is the Registrar’s Office. The Registrar can be informed verbally or in writing of a student’s request to withdraw. If a student tells the Registrar of a withdrawal, the date of the notification becomes the financial aid withdrawal date. The Registrar will ask students to complete and submit a withdrawal form, and it may take a few days to process it. Nevertheless, the date the student tells the Registrar of their desire to withdraw becomes the financial aid withdrawal date, even if the student never returns the withdrawal form. Therefore, it is important that students



are certain of their decision to withdraw from school before the Registrar’s Office is informed. Only the Registrar can establish the withdrawal date. If a student states a desire to withdraw to a faculty member, academic advisor or Office of Financial Aid, nothing will happen. Students must notify the Registrar. Students who withdraw from the University may apply for readmission through the Registrar’s Office if their absence has been one year or less (two semesters and one summer). Students who do not return within a year must meet the Catalog requirements for admission and graduation in effect at the time of re-enrollment and must reapply through the Admissions Office. Federal law requires that students, who withdraw after the semester has already started and have attended at least one class session, fall under Return of Title IV Funds. This means that financial aid eligibility will be calculated based on an earned versus unearned calculation. The calculation determines how much aid a student is eligible to keep based on the amount of time enrolled. Students who attend more than 60% of the semester will be eligible to keep their entire financial aid award. For example, a semester is 16 weeks, or 112 days, long. If a student were to withdraw at the end of the sixth week (42 days), the student would have missed 70 days of the semester. Dividing 70 days missed by 112 days in the semester equals 62.5 % (or 37.5 % of the semester was attended). The University would be required to return 62.5 % of this student’s financial aid to the government. The federal government has defined two types of withdrawal, an “official” withdrawal and an “unofficial” withdrawal. An “official” withdrawal is one in which the student notifies the Registrar of their desire to withdraw from Dominican. An “unofficial” withdraw is one in which a student leaves without notifying the Registrar’s Office. Students who do not officially withdraw and pass no units (receive grades of ‘F’ or ‘UF’) in a semester or summer session, are presumed to have unofficially withdrawn, unless the student provides the Financial Aid Office with documentation showing attendance through the end of the semester. Such documentation must be presented within 30 days of the end of the semester being evaluated. The return of aid for an unofficial withdrawal is calculated at the 50% point of the semester or summer session. Once the return is calculated and aid is sent back to the Department of Education, in some cases students may still owe money to the school. In the instance mentioned above,

the student withdrew after the deadline for receiving any type of tuition or fee refund. Therefore, the student would be charged for the entire amount of tuition, but 62.5 % of the student’s financial aid would be returned to the government, making the student personally accountable for paying at least 62.5 % of the tuition charges. It is the responsibility of the student to make payment arrangements with the Business Services Office to pay any balance. The order in which aid is returned is as follows:

SATISFACTORY ACADEMIC PROGRESS (SAP) Federal regulations require that colleges and universities monitor a student’s progress toward earning a degree. This monitoring is called Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP). Each student’s progress is reviewed at the end of each semester, usually after the deadline for grades to be posted. SAP is monitored by using quantitative, qualitative and maximum time frame measures.


1) Unsubsidized Stafford 2) Subsidized Stafford 3) Perkins Loan 4) PLUS Loan 5) Pell Grant 6) Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG) 7) Other Title IV Assistance Student loan borrowers are responsible for loan funds that did not get returned to the lender as a part of the Return of Title IV Funds, and repayment will begin according to the terms and conditions of the promissory note.

REFUND SCHEDULE Dominican’s tuition refund schedule can be found within the academic calendar on the Registrar’s web page at

GRANT PRORATION POLICY If you are packaged with financial aid as a full-time student (12 or more units per semester) and your enrollment status at the end of the add/drop period is below full-time, you will be repackaged and your Federal and State grants will be prorated based on your enrollment status according to the chart below: Award Type

9-11 units 6-8 units

1-6 units

Cal Grants (A, B, & Access)




Pell Grants




Educational Grant SEOG)








Institutional Aid*




This is based on the number of units a student completes each term. If you are enrolled as a full-time student, you are required to complete at least 24 units (12 units a term) for the year. If you are enrolled less than full-time, you are required to complete at least 75% of your enrolled units. For example, if you are enrolled in three-quarter time (9 units), you are required to complete at least 7 units for that term. If a student petitions to drop a class late and it is approved and removed from the academic transcript, this class still counts as a class attempted but not completed for SAP purposes and therefore, can affect a student’s financial aid eligibility. Please note: In order to graduate within four-years, full-time enrollment will need to consist of a minimum of 15.5 units per semester.

QUALITATIVE MEASURE This is based on the minimum cumulative GPA a student must maintain in order to be eligible to receive federal funding. Every financial aid recipient must maintain a minimum of a 2.0 GPA to maintain financial aid eligibility. Please note that merit scholarships may require a higher minimum GPA in order to maintain eligibility.

MAXIMUM TIME FRAME FOR COMPLETION (TIME LIMIT) In addition, maximum time frame limits apply to a student’s eligibility. A student may not receive federal aid for more than 150% of the normal time frame required to complete their degree at Dominican. For undergraduates, that is a maximum of 186 total units (including repeat courses and units transferred into Dominican) or 12 full-time semesters, whichever comes first. Students entering college for the first time are eligible for a maximum of four-years (eight semesters) of Dominican aid. Transfer students are eligible for a maximum of three-years (six semesters) of eligibility before eligibility is exhausted.

* Proration may be available for seniors and Nursing students enrolled in clinical courses.

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If you have already taken a course and earned credit, repeated classes will not count towards the completion of the quantitative measure of completing 24 units for the year; however, it will count towards the qualitative measure of meeting the minimum GPA requirement of a 2.0 and the maximum time limit.

If you fail to meet the minimum standards of your financial aid eligibility for a second time, then your financial aid will be rescinded. This includes all Federal, State and Institutional financial aid. In order to stay enrolled at Dominican while on Financial Aid Suspension, you will need to pay the full charges out of pocket.



For purposes of evaluating SAP, grades of incomplete count as attempted but not earned credit. Therefore, it will not be counted towards meeting the minimum GPA or credit completion and may qualify you for Financial Aid Warning or Suspension until the grade has been posted.

If you have been placed on Financial Aid Suspension, you have the ability to appeal the decision and maintain your financial aid eligibility. In order to do this, a Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeal Form must be completed. This form can be picked up at the Office of Financial Aid. This form asks you to explain the circumstances in which you were unable to meet SAP and what your plan is for the future to ensure that you meet SAP. You must meet with your Advisor to help you develop a plan.

WITHDRAWALS If you withdraw from a semester in which you received financial aid, you still use eligibility towards the maximum time limit for completion.

EVALUATION PERIODS The Office of Financial Aid will review undergraduate day students for SAP at the end of each semester. Once the Registrar has posted the grades from that semester, the student’s entire academic history will be evaluated for SAP, not just the semesters in which the student received financial aid.

FINANCIAL AID WARNING If you fail to meet minimum standards to maintain your financial aid eligibility (SAP), you will be placed on Financial Aid Warning for the following semester. While on Financial Aid Warning, you retain your financial aid eligibility and receive your normal financial aid package. At the end of the warning semester you are expected to have brought your academic standing up to meet the minimum financial aid requirements.



FINANCIAL AID REINSTATEMENT If the Financial Aid Committee approves your appeal, you will be placed on Financial Aid Probation and your financial aid will be reinstated for the following semester. The Financial Aid Committee may require benchmarks that are to be met before reinstatement will be granted beyond the initial semester. In all cases, if you successfully complete a semester while on Financial Aid Warning or Suspension AND meet both quantitative and qualitative SAP standards at the end of the semester, you will regain full eligibility for financial aid beginning with the subsequent semester (maximum time limits still apply).

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS Q Do I have to reapply for financial aid every year? A Yes! The financial aid package you have received applies to this year only. In order to receive financial aid in future years you are required to complete the FAFSA by the March 2 deadline.

Q What is the average financial aid package at Dominican? A For the 2015–2016 academic year, the average Dominican gift award (scholarships and grants) was approximately $16,919. Students who applied for needbased aid also received an average of $5,410 in Federal and State grants in addition to Dominican gift aid. As with any average, some students received less and some students received more depending on factors such as academic merit and financial need.

Q Are there scholarships for continuing students? A Yes. Most of our scholarships are renewable; however, merit scholarships have a GPA requirement for renewal.

Q Should I consider student loans? A Student loans represent a manageable way to access

time. Borrowing the maximum in federal student loans totals $27,000, and the value of a Dominican education lasts a lifetime.

Q What if I need other loans? A Parent and Private credit-based loans can help families finance their share of the cost of education after other financial aid. The choice to borrow reflects a family decision. Credit-based loans require a two-year credit and employment history. Students generally borrow with an eligible co-signer. Please visit our website for specific information on these types of loans and for links to comparison sites.

Q What happens to my financial aid package if I move off-campus?

A When you move off-campus your financial aid package is reassessed due to the reduction in your Cost of Attendance. Often times, a reduction in Cost of Attendance results in a reduction in the Dominican Grant.

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REFERENCE LIST CALIFORNIA STUDENT AID COMMISSION (CSAC) Organization that administers the Cal Grant program. 916-526-7590 or 888-CA-GRANT

FAFSA ON THE WEB To submit your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) online 800-4-FEDAID

FEDERAL STUDENT AID Financial aid information from the Department of Education

FINAID A website that provides reliable general financial aid information

INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE (IRS) If you need a copy of your federal tax transcript or have a tax related question 800-TAX-1040