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FINANCIAL AID PROGRAMS

 

Application Instructions

All graduate students must complete the UW-La Crosse Financial Aid Information Form (FAIF) and the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), as well as, submit the proper federal tax forms to UW-La Crosse. All forms may be obtained from the Financial Aid Office. There are no application deadline dates, but priority will be given to those applications ready to be processed by April 15. You may expect to receive your notification between May 15 and June 15 if you apply before the priority date, complete all forms correctly, and respond to all requests for additional information. If you apply after the priority date, you will be notified as soon as possible after June 30. No student with “Special Non-Degree Student” status will be eligible for any financial aid, including the Stafford Loan.

 

Aid Programs

Students filing complete applications will be notified of financial aid available for their use following processing. Those students qualifying for financial aid may receive aid from one or more of the following programs:

 

MERIT-BASED AID

Graduate Assistantships

The University of Wisconsin-La Crosse offers a variety of graduate assistantships. To apply, the graduate student communicates directly with the department of intended degree work. The Financial Aid Office does not administer the graduate assistantship program. Assistantships are available to resident and nonresident students. Awards may be made for assistantships which require 14 to 20 hours weekly of responsibilities during each semester of the academic year. Assistants are expected to carry no fewer than nine graduate credits each semester. Those with 14-hour assignments may carry up to 14 hours of graduate credit and those with 20-hour assignments should not exceed 12 graduate credits each semester. All graduate students in the MS-Biology program who hold fellowships, assistantships, or traineeships will be required to take a minimum of nine credit hours during each of their first two semesters of residence at UW-L. Information on assistantships is available from the Director of Graduate Studies and/or graduate program directors.

 

Summer assistantships may be available. During a regular eight-week summer session, eight credits are considered a maximum class load. Any deviation from these credit loads or work assignments must be approved by the appropriate department chair and/or program director and the Director of Graduate Studies. Graduate assistantships are limited in number and are awarded to specifically qualified applicants on the recommendation of the department chair or program directors and with the approval of the respective dean.

 

Assistantships are not awarded to students admitted on probation. Graduate assistants must maintain a GPA of 3.00 or higher in order to retain eligibility for their awards. Tuition and fees are not waived for graduate assistants although the out-of-state portion of tuition may be waived in some cases. Further information and application forms may be obtained from department chairpersons and/or program directors.

 

Student Center Assistantships

These are available to students enrolled in all graduate study programs for service of up to 20 hours weekly in supervision of student activity areas, including the student center and campus recreational activities programs. Assistantships are also available to graduate students for service as assistant head residents in residence halls. Assistants are expected to carry from nine to 12 credits of graduate course work each semester.

 

Council of Graduate Schools Resolution regarding Graduate Scholars, Fellows, Trainees, and Assistants

Acceptance of an offer of financial support (such as a graduate scholarship, fellowship, traineeship, or assistantship) for the next academic year by a prospective or enrolled graduate student completes an agreement that both student and graduate school expect to honor in that context. The conditions affecting such offers and their acceptance must be defined carefully and understood by all parties.

 

Students are under no obligation to respond to offers of financial support prior to April 15; earlier deadlines for acceptance of such offers violate the intent of this Resolution.* In those instances in which a student accepts an offer before April 15, and subsequently desires to withdraw that acceptance, the student may submit in writing a resignation of the appointment at any time through April 15. However, an acceptance given or left in force after April 15 commits the student not to accept another offer without first obtaining a written release from the institution to which a commitment has been made. Similarly, an offer by an institution after April 15 is conditional on presentation by the student of the written release from any previously accepted offer. It is further agreed by the institutions and organization subscribing to the above Resolution that a copy of this Resolution should accompany every scholarship, fellowship, traineeship, and assistantship offer.

 

NEED-BASED AID

 

Students receiving need-based financial aid must be able to establish definite financial need as assessed by the federal methodology system. Students must demonstrate their willingness to help themselves. Applications for financial aid are given consideration only after a student has been accepted for admission.

 

Nonresident Fee Waivers

Partial nonresident fee waivers are available on a competitive basis to out-of-state graduate students with superior academic credentials and financial need. Students must maintain full-time status and demonstrate good academic achievement. Students should complete the financial aid process and this award is given as part of a financial aid package.

 

Advanced Opportunity Program (AOP)

This is a need-based grant from the UW System for ethnic minority students. Students complete the financial aid application process and the grant is awarded as part of the financial aid package.

 

Wisconsin/Bureau of Indian Affairs (B.I.A.) Native American Student Assistance Grants

Native American grants are available from the State of Wisconsin, B.I.A. or local tribe office. Eligible students have financial need and are at least one-fourth American Indian. Maximum yearly award: varies.

 

Subsidized Federal Stafford Loan

Students attending at least half-time may apply for this loan using the Federal Application for Financial Aid. If eligible, the student secures the loan from a hometown bank, savings and loan association or credit union. Maximum yearly award: Graduate students can borrow up to $8,500 per year. Maximum cumulative loan total is $65,500 (including undergraduate loans).

 

Unsubsidized Federal Stafford Loan

This program is designed for students who need additional financial assistance beyond the Federal Stafford Loan based on need. A student must first apply for the need-based Federal Stafford Loan. Annual loan limits vary depending on costs of attendance.

 

Federal Perkins Loan

Loans are available to students in need who are citizens of the United States, or are in the United States for other than temporary purposes. Graduate students may borrow up to $5,000 a year, but must limit their total undergraduate and graduate borrowing to $30,000. Repayment of the loan commences six months after the student ceases to be at least a half-time student. Borrowers may have up to ten years to make repayment. No interest is charged while the borrower is a qualified student and five percent is charged during the repayment period.

 

Federal Work-Study Program

Financial need must be established to qualify for the program. Students given work under the College Work-Study Program will be employed by various campus departments and some off-campus agencies under the Community Service Program. All qualified Work-Study students may work up to 20 hours per week during the semester and summer session while enrolled in classes.

 

Student Employment Service/ Job Locator Program

The Student Employment Service searches out employment for students who need or want to work. Employers list their openings which are posted in the Financial Aid Office. Interested students take down listed information and pursue the job as individuals. These jobs are non-need based.

 

Notes to all students:

Unless previously negotiated, all aid awards are based on full-time student status. Students carrying less than a full-time load will have their aid reduced accordingly. It is the student’s responsibility to make sure their application is complete and moving through the processing system. Funding levels and regulations are subject to change at any time per state or federal budgetary and legislative mandates

 

Satisfactory Academic Progress Standard

Federal Law mandates that post-secondary institutions participating in Federal Title IV Student Financial Aid Programs, including student loans, have in place and monitor an academic progress policy. There are two components of the UW-L Graduate Satisfactory Academic Progress Standard for Financial Aid:  grade point average (GPA), and progress (credits attempted/ credits earned).

1.                  Grade point average is monitored by the various academic deans at UW-L. Requirements follow the university probation and retention policies listed in this catalog. Failure to meet these conditions will result in the student being academically suspended from UW-L. The student will also lose eligibility for student financial aid, including student loans. Notification of non-compliance with the GPA component, and the appeal procedure for reinstatement are performed by the various academic deans. If an appeal is granted, eligibility for financial aid will be determined by the UW-L Financial Aid Office.

2.                  Progress: effective Sept. 1, 1996, all full-time and part-time graduate students at UW-La Crosse must complete and pass 70% of all credits registered for at UW-La Crosse. This will be monitored on a yearly basis, September through August. Failure to comply with this component will result in the student’s financial aid eligibility, including student loans, being suspended.

 

Credits Earned: The successful completion of a credit attempted is credit for which a grade of A, AB, B, BC, C, S, or P is received.

 

Withdrawal: Any withdrawal, or credit drop, after the start of a grading period will count as credit attempted and credit not earned.

 

Incompletes: Incompletes will count as credit attempted and credit not earned until a passing grade has been recorded by the Records and Registration Office. It will be the responsibility of the student to notify the Financial Aid Office of any change in grade.

Repeated Credits: Graduate courses may not be repeated; however, if permission was received for an extenuating circumstance, the following rule applies. Repeated credits will be counted as attempted credits as many times as the course is repeated. Examples:  1) a three credit class is repeated and the second passed grade becomes the grade of record. The student has attempted six credits and has earned three credits, 2) the same scenario but the second grade is “F”. The student has attempted six credits and has earned no credits.

 

Appeals: A student not meeting the yearly progress component of the Satisfactory Academic Progress Standard will be notified by the Financial Aid Office. The student can make an appointment in the Financial Aid Office, 215 Graff Main Hall, to discuss their situation. A written appeal outlining the reason(s) for failure to meet the Satisfactory Academic Progress Standard will be required, and appropriate third-party documentation may be required. If an appeal is approved, eligibility for financial aid will be determined by the Financial Aid Office.

 

Credits attempted at UW-L and credits earned at UW-L will accumulate regardless of whether the student received financial aid, including student loans for those credits or not.

 

SCHOLARSHIPS, AWARDS, AND SHORT TERM LOANS

 

Many scholarships and awards have been established by alumni, faculty and staff, parents, students, businesses, and organizations. Recipients are selected by scholarship committees on the basis of an application, grade point average and other materials as deemed appropriate by departmental committees. Scholarships are presented to students whose qualifications best fit the stipulations of the donor. Amounts vary annually based on funding from gifts or investment earnings available from a fund.

 

Almost all scholarships are contingent upon full-time enrollment both fall and spring semesters at UW-L. Scholarships and awards are usually paid for the academic year in two payments, the first half in the fall semester and the other half in the spring semester.

 

A scholarship and awards resource book listing all scholarships administered by the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse Foundation, Inc., is available in the University Bookstore, Cartwright Center.

 

A general scholarship application is available to currently enrolled students at the UW-L Foundation Office, Cleary Alumni and Friends Center. It is also available on the University Website (http://perth.uwlax. edu/Advancement/Foundation/genapp.html). This general application covers all scholarships requiring the General Scholarship/Award Application. Some require specific applications. Applications are submitted to various offices that offer scholarships based on academic majors; please refer to the scholarship catalog. All applications (unless otherwise indicated) must be submitted to the UW-L Foundation Office. The deadline for scholarship applications is March 1 each year. Scholarships and awards are announced at the honors reception set for the last Monday in April.

 

The Foundation also administers a number of individual funds which provide for interest-free, short-term emergency loans to students in need, provided they are enrolled for a full credit load of non-repeat courses. The Financial Aid Office, 215 Graff Main Hall, has more information and application forms.  

 

THE UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN-LA CROSSE FOUNDATION, INC.

 

The University of Wisconsin-La Crosse Foundation, Inc., is a non-profit, tax-exempt Wisconsin corporation, created in 1967 to support the purposes and services of the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse. Designated by the Chancellor as the charitable arm of the university, the Foundation is responsible for encouraging and administering gifts from private sources and channeling those funds into areas where the university’s needs are the greatest.

 

BENEFITS FOR VETERANS AND VETERANS’ DEPENDENTS

 

The university is fully approved for the education of veterans and veterans’ dependents under both federal and state programs. New students who qualify for benefits should report to the Veterans Benefits Coordinator in the Records and Registration Office, 117 Graff Main Hall, before or during registration. After this initial contact, registered students should keep the coordinator apprised of their status and needs.

If you receive support from veteran programs, you are required to report to the Veterans Benefits Coordinator after registering for classes each semester to complete an enrollment certification form. The university must certify your attendance and credit load to the Veterans Administration. Payments of veterans’ benefits depend on the number of credits carried. Graduate students should carry at least nine credits to receive full benefits under most programs. Payment will be awarded according to the schedule below:

TABLE TO DETERMINE %
OF VETERANS BENEFITS

Graduate Credits

Enrollment/
Benefits Status

Semester    

Summer

 

9+

5+

Full-time

7-8

4

3/4 time

5-6

3

1/2 time


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Last Modified: 10/29/00 9:02 AM Copyright 2000 by the University of Wisconsin - La Crosse and the Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System. All Rights Reserved.