FINANCIAL AID POLICIES
The Financial Aid Office will monitor the attendance record of students receiving financial aid. Students who are not attending will be subject to reduction and possible loss of all financial aid. This may result in a financial liability on the part of the student for tuition, fees, and books.
RETURN OF FUNDS
Students who receive Federal Title IV Funds (Pell Grant and/or FSEOG Grant) and stop attending classes, withdraw from classes, receive all failing grades, or receive a combination of withdrawals and failing grades are subject to a return of Title IV Funds. This may result in the student owing a refund to the college, the Federal Student Aid Program or both.
Example: A student’s financial aid consists of a Pell Grant of $1,500, and the student’s tuition is $672. The student withdraws on the 26th day of a 118-day semester. The student is eligible for 22% of $1,500 or $330. The college would return $1,170 ($1,500 - $330) to the U.S. Department of Education, and the student would owe the college $342 ($672-$330).
Financial Aid Satisfactory Progress Policy
The Rend Lake College Office of Financial Aid is required by the U.S. Department of Education and the Illinois Student Assistance Commission to monitor the academic progress for students receiving federal and/or state financial assistance. Satisfactory Progress Standards are used to ensure that students who receive any federal or state assistance are satisfactorily progressing toward their educational goals in an approved certificate or degree program.
Students must be in compliance with the Financial Aid Satisfactory Progress Policy regardless of whether the student has previously received any financial aid. All semesters of attendance are included in the evaluation. All transfer course work that has been accepted for credit by Rend Lake College will be considered in determining eligibility. Students who have not previously received financial aid will not be notified of their status until they have applied for financial aid.
Satisfactory Progress Requirements
Satisfactory Progress must include qualitative and quantitative measurement consistently applied to all students. At Rend Lake College these measurements are determined by the following criteria:
- Cumulative Grade Point Average is at least 2.0
- Cumulative Completion Rate is no less than 67% (total credit hours earned divided by total credit hours attempted)
Satisfactory progress will be evaluated at the end of each semester.
Financial Aid Warning Status
A student who fails to meet the above named requirements for the first time will be placed on Financial Aid Warning Status. Financial Aid Warning Status has no impact on the eligibility for financial aid.
Financial Aid Suspension
Suspension of financial aid occurs when a student who is on Financial Aid Warning Status fails to meet the Satisfactory Progress Requirements criteria during any semester of attendance after being placed on probation. Students who are suspended are no longer eligible for financial aid benefits.
Maximum Time Frame
Degree or certificate requirements must be completed within a specified time period. At Rend Lake College a student must complete his/her chosen academic program before attempting 150% of the number of hours required for the program. Students who have already earned a degree will be considered to have exceeded this time frame. Appeal Process: Students who are pursuing an additional degree or certificate or have changed majors are eligible to file an appeal for an extension. The 150% appeal forms are available from the Office of Financial Aid and Veteran's Affairs or Online. Appeals will be reviewed by the Financial Aid/Appeals Committee.
Financial Aid Suspension Appeals
Students must submit proof that circumstances that were unforeseen or beyond their control that interfered with the successful completion of their courses or program. Situations that are acceptable for an appeal to be considered include:
- Serious injury or illness
- Death of an immediate family member
- Sudden, unexpected employment changes
- Suspension is a result of courses taken during high school
- It has been more than five (5) years since the student last attended Rend Lake College
Some situations are not acceptable reasons for filing an appeal. These circumstances include, but are not limited to:
- Conflicts with an instructor
- Loss of drivers license
- Failure to drop a class by the posted deadline
- Failure to be adequately prepared for class, such as:
- Not purchasing books/supplies
- Not having adequate child care arrangements prior to the start of the semester
- Not having reliable transportation established prior to the start of the semester
- Not having access to a computer or the internet for online courses
- Being unprepared for college level coursework
Failing to understand or being unaware of Rend Lake College’s policies does not constitute a reason for appeal.
Students who do not have a situation that warrants an appeal may regain financial aid eligibility by enrolling in courses, on a self-pay basis, until their cumulative GPA is a 2.0 and cumulative completion rate is 67%.
Appeals for Students with a Degree/Certificate or have Exceeded Maximum Time Frame
You may appeal for an extension of credit hours if:
- You are pursuing a new degree or certificate at Rend Lake College,
- You have changed your major,
- You have taken developmental courses or dual credit courses,
- Or you have mitigating circumstances such as a personal illness or injury, death of an immediate family member, or an unavoidable event that was beyond your control.
If you feel you meet the criteria for filing a Suspension or Maximum Time Frame Appeal, forms are available from the Financial Aid Office.
Deadlines for Filing an Appeal
January 10, 2014
June 6, 2014
August 15, 2014
The Appeals Committee meets on Thursday, and appeals must be received by the preceding Friday to be considered.
THE DECISION OF THE APPEALS COMMITTEE IS FINAL.