Office of Student Financial Services
The Office of Student Financial Services has three main service functions:
Financial Aid: Student Financial Services Counselors evaluate information submitted on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and determine student eligibility for federal, state and institutional need-based funds.
Student Employment: While positions are not guaranteed and need-based work study isn’t included in initial awards for graduate students, Seattle University’s Handshake portal includes jobs that are funded by the employer/institution and open to any interested student (not just those with work study awards) as well as jobs available to recent graduates.
Student Accounts: Student Accounts prepares and distributes bills for tuition and fees, room and board and insurance. The office takes payments, sets up payment plans, assesses holds and applicable fees, and distributes aid.
The office is open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday and Tuesday, and 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Wednesday through Friday.
Applying for Federal Student Aid
To be considered for need-based financial aid, students must complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) each year. The FAFSA for the upcoming academic year-summer, fall, winter and spring quarters-becomes available on Oct. 1 at www.fafsa.gov. Students are encouraged to use their FSA ID Number to sign their completed, on-line FAFSA electronically. Seattle University’s Federal School Code-003790-must be listed in the appropriate section of the FAFSA so results will be sent to the university.
While FAFSAs are accepted and processed year-round, graduate students are strongly encouraged to have their FAFSAs filed by Feb. 1, or as soon after that date as possible, whether for summer quarter or the academic year starting in September. The earlier a file is completed the more likely funding will be available on the first official day of the term as published on the Academic Calendar by the Office of the Registrar.
Financial need for a school year is defined as the difference between the cost of attendance at Seattle University and the student’s Expected Family Contribution (EFC) that is calculated from information provided on the FAFSA. Student Financial Services prepares a financial aid award to meet as much of a student’s need as possible. At the graduate level, student awards are primarily made of up federal Direct Loans. Descriptions of the federal, state and institutional aid programs follow.
To be eligible for most financial aid programs students must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents.
Financial Aid Programs for Graduate Students
Scholarships for Graduate Students
Seattle University offers a limited number of scholarships to graduate students. These scholarships are provided in recognition of a student’s ability to enhance Seattle University’s educational community. Scholarship renewal is based on scholarship specifics, satisfactory academic progress and, in some cases, continued financial need.
The Sinegal Fellowship
The Sinegal Fellowship provides support for underrepresented minority Costco Scholars who have graduated from either the University of Washington or Seattle University and who are pursuing an advanced degree at SU. The Sinegal Fellowship is a 2 year award with a stipend of $5,000 for each year. Questions about this fellowship should be directed to Janet Shandley at email@example.com or Christa Callanan at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dr. Marylou Wyse Scholarship
The Marylou Wyse Scholarship is awarded through the Graduate Admissions Office in consultation with the academic departments for select programs that vary year to year. This is a limited need-based scholarship that is awarded for two years. Students must maintain continuous enrollment of at least three credits per term but with a minimum of 12 credits per nine-month academic year. To be eligible students must complete the FAFSA each year.
Graduate Diversity Scholarship
The Graduate Diversity Scholarship is a limited scholarship available to outstanding candidates from under-represented populations. Students must be admitted into one of the following graduate programs: Education (Curriculum and Instruction, Educational Administration, Pre-service teacher certification-MIT only), Nursing and Theology and Ministry. Students should contact their department to apply.
Catholic School Special Tuition Grant
Eligible full-time religious and lay teachers and principals of Catholic schools under the auspices of the Archdiocese of Seattle may apply for this grant. Master in Teaching (MIT) and Doctor of Education (EdD) students are not eligible. The grant cannot be used to pay for MIT or EdD credits. Grants pay half of regular tuition for eligible graduate education courses and the student is responsible for the remainder of the charges. Additional information and the application for this grant become available on May 1 preceding the upcoming academic year by clicking on “Forms and Documents” in the left-hand navigation menu at www.seattleu.edu/sfs.
Several graduate departments and programs offer program-specific scholarships and/or assistantships. Scholarships are generally limited; some awards may be based on financial need and some may be renewable. Students should contact their departments for specific information about availability, eligibility and application procedures.
Outside scholarships are scholarships students bring with them to Seattle University. Students must inform Student Financial Services if they are receiving outside scholarships because they must be included in the resources available to meet costs. These scholarships then are listed as Private Outside Scholarships on the Seattle University Award Letter.
Grants for Graduate Students
Students participating in master’s degree programs in special education or teaching may qualify for a federal TEACH Grant. In return for receiving a TEACH Grant, a student agrees to serve: as a highly qualified full-time teacher in a high-need field in a public or private elementary or secondary school that serves low-income students for at least four academic years within eight calendar years of completing the program of study for which they received a TEACH Grant.
Important: Failure to complete the service obligation in full will result in conversion of the TEACH grants to a Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan with interest charged from the date the grant was originally disbursed. The Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan must be repaid to the U.S. Department of Education.
Veterans’ Educational Benefits
The federal Department of Veterans Affairs website is the best source for information about all VA Educational Benefits Programs.
Veterans may also use the Federal VA’s online Ask Us a GI Bill Question to see answers to specific questions others have asked about benefits and/or to ask questions or call the Federal Department of Veterans Affairs at 1-888-GIBILL-1 (1-888-442-4551). Veterans can also visit the Veterans page on the Seattle U website.
The Washington State Department of Veterans Affairs website also has useful information for veterans.
Loans for Graduate Students
These are low-interest student loans that must be repaid.
Federal Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Direct Loans
Effective July 1, 2012, graduate and professional students whose loan periods began after that effective date were no longer eligible to receive subsidized Direct Loans. Subsidized Direct Loans received prior to July 1, 2012 continue to be subsidized as long as the student meets the criteria to receive that interest subsidy per the terms and conditions of their Master Promissory Notes.
Stafford loan repayment begins six months after a student leaves school or drops below half-time enrollment.
Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan awards are limited by the program’s annual and lifetime limits and by the student’s cost of attendance. The unsubsidized loan begins to accrue interest after the first disbursement.
The interest rate for these loans for 2018-19 was 6.595% and an origination fee of 1.069% was charged before it is disbursed to the student’s account (for example, if a student had a $1,000 loan award for the quarter, $989 was disbursed to the student’s account). Federal regulations require review and, if necessary, adjustment of both the interest rate and origination fee for new, subsequent year loans on an annual basis.
Direct Loan terms and benefits are explained during the student’s required online entrance counseling session and are also included on the master promissory note the student signs before loan proceeds are disbursed.
First-time Federal Direct Loan borrowers must complete an online entrance counseling session and a Master Promissory Note before their loans can be disbursed. Students can complete these loan pre-requirements at www.studentloans.gov.
After a student’s financial aid file is complete and the appropriate documents have been completed, loan funds will be disbursed to the student’s account each quarter, provided the student is enrolled at least half-time. For graduate students, half-time enrollment for purposes of receiving financial aid is a minimum of three credits each term.
Annual and aggregate loan limits are shown in the chart below.
Loan Limits Maximum Limits
Graduate & Professional Students
|All Years of Study
$8,500 for loan periods beginning prior to July 1, 2012
Graduate and professional students are no longer eligible for subsidized Stafford Loans for loan periods beginning on or after July 1, 2012
For loan periods beginning after July 1, 2012, this entire, annual amount will be unsubsidized.
For Subsidized Stafford Loans with loan periods beginning prior to July 1, 2012: $65,500
For loan periods beginning on July 1, 2012 or later, the loan amount will be unsubsidized and will add to the aggregate limit as determined by the U.S. Department of Education
Federal Direct PLUS Loan for Graduate Students (Grad PLUS)
Graduate students may be eligible to borrow up to their total cost of education, as certified by the Student Financial Services Office, less any financial aid they have been awarded.
The Graduate PLUS Loan is a non-need-based loan which, for 2018-19, had a fixed interest rate of 7.595%. A 4.264% origination fee was deducted from the awarded amount before the loan was disbursed. Federal regulations require review and, if necessary, adjustment of both the interest rate and origination fee for subsequent year new loans.
Repayment begins 60 days after the loan is fully disbursed for the academic year. For an academic year loan for three quarters (fall, winter and spring), repayment begins 60 days after the spring quarter disbursement in March. Students may request in-school payment deferment by contacting the Direct Loan Service Center at (800) 848-0979.
As part of the Grad PLUS Loan application process, students must complete a FAFSA, which will determine initial eligibility for the PLUS Loan and also for Federal Direct Loan funding. While not mandatory, students are strongly encouraged to take advantage of their annual Federal Direct Loan eligibility before applying for a Graduate PLUS Loan because the terms and conditions of the Direct Loan are better than those for the Graduate PLUS Loan.
Students wishing to apply for a Graduate PLUS loan should submit an online request at www.studentloans.gov After submitting the online PLUS request, the borrower will receive the results of the credit check for the loan. If the credit check is approved, a first-time borrower will be required to complete the loan entrance counseling process and sign the Graduate PLUS Master Promissory Note (MPN) at www.studentloans.gov. StudentLoans.gov will notify Seattle University that the loan has been approved and Student Financial Services will process the loan.
Private Educational Loans
Students needing to pursue other financing options can research private educational loan programs through participating lending institutions who may approve loans up to the total cost of education minus any financial aid the student has been awarded. Eligibility to receive these loans is based on credit-worthiness as determined by the specific lender to which the student applies.
Private educational loan considerations:
- Staff in the Student Financial Services Office are available to students who need assistance determining the amount they are eligible to borrow.
- Unless specifically instructed otherwise, Student Financial Services certifies loans to be evenly disbursed over the quarters of attendance the student lists on the loan application.
- If the student applies for an amount that is more than the total due on their student account, the remaining balance will be refunded to the student.
- Because it can take up to three weeks after the loan is approved to actually receive the loan proceeds, students should apply as early as possible and for the entire academic year if possible.
Students who choose to take out a private educational loan will be required to complete and submit a loan self-certification form to their lender. They can contact the lender or the Student Financial Services Office to request a self-certification form.
Student Financial Services will certify a private educational loan from any lender a student selects, regardless of whether or not the student has chosen to apply for federal loans or other financial aid. However, Student Financial Services strongly recommends that students look at the federal loans first and carefully compare rates, terms and benefits offered with any private loan they’re considering because the federal loans generally have better borrower benefits and repayment terms and conditions.
Private Educational Continuing Education Loans
Several lenders provide loans for students who are not seeking a degree (non-matriculated) or students who are enrolled less than half-time. These loans are generally called Continuing Education Loans and may be researched on the Web using any standard search engine.
Private Lender Direct to Consumer (DTC) Loans
Some private lenders will make loans directly to students without contacting the Student Financial Services Office to verify how much the student is able to borrow without affecting their other existing financial aid. Student Financial Services strongly encourages students to talk with a Student Financial Services Counselor before taking out one of these loans because they may be eligible for other financial aid, including additional federal loans or certified private educational loans, that have better terms and conditions than DTC Loans.
Students must report the amount of their DTC Loan to Student Financial Services where it must be considered as a resource in combination with any other aid the student may be receiving. If the student has not coordinated with the Student Financial Services Office ahead of time, the amount of the DTC Loan could result in a reduction or required repayment of other aid.
Work Study for Graduate Students
Work study is not included in initial awards for graduate students because funding is extremely limited. Graduate students interested in work study should contact Student Financial Services to be placed on a waiting list should funding become available, in which case, a graduate student could be considered for these programs:
On-Campus Federal Work Study
This need-based work program is federally funded. Students may work up to 20 hours per week at a position on campus and are paid monthly for hours worked.
Off-Campus State Work Study
This need-based work program for students who are permanent residents of Washington State is state-funded. Participating students may work up to 19 hours per week in off-campus positions. Opportunities are available in approved private businesses, nonprofit organizations and in city and county government.
Students who are not awarded need-based work-study but who want to work while attending Seattle University can use the university’s free job listing service, the Handshake Portal. Student’s may find jobs on-campus that are paid directly through the institution/department.
Dropping or Withdrawing from Classes
Dropping or Withdrawing from SOME, But Not All, Classes
Adjustments may need to be made to the financial aid awards of students who drop or withdraw from some, but not all, of their classes at Seattle University, depending on several factors. Therefore, while general information about dropping or withdrawing from classes is given below, Student Financial Services strongly encourages students to contact a Student Financial Services Counselor before making changes to their enrollment.
In general, after classes begin and federal and/or state financial aid has been transmitted, withdrawing from some classes but remaining enrolled for at least one credit will not affect aid for the quarter in progress as long as the student met the original eligibility requirements to receive the aid. However, if the student drops one or more classes during the add/drop period, institutional aid for the quarter will be withdrawn if enrollment drops below full-time. Thereafter, institutional aid will be reduced proportionally to the reduction in credits and the tuition refund level in effect at the time the student withdraws.
In general, for students who drop or withdraw from some of their classes before they have established eligibility for aid, but are still enrolled at least half-time (three credits or more as a graduate student), financial aid will be revised based on the new enrollment status. Because eligibility to receive financial aid in subsequent quarters may depend on the number of credits successfully completed in the current quarter-and classes from which a student withdraws do not count as successfully completed-dropping or withdrawing from classes may affect eligibility to receive financial aid in the future.
In general, most or all financial aid will be canceled for students who drop below half-time enrollment (less than three credits as a graduate student) before they have established eligibility for aid. Students are strongly encouraged to talk with a Student Financial Services Counselor before dropping to less than half-time to confirm the consequences of reducing their enrollment.
Credit balances resulting from withdrawing from classes are refunded to the student. Adding classes after a refund has been processed may result in the student owing additional tuition for the current quarter.
Students who withdraw from all classes after financial aid has been transmitted to their student account, should refer to Dropping or Withdrawing From All Classes below.
Dropping or Withdrawing From All Classes
In this section you’ll find general information about the effect on financial aid of dropping or withdrawing from all courses for the quarter-the amount of aid received, the amount that will be withdrawn and returned and future eligibility. Because individual circumstances and information vary widely from student to student, and because dropping or withdrawing from all classes may have different consequences for financial aid purposes than for academic purposes, Student Financial Services strongly encourages financial aid recipients to see a Student Financial Services Counselor before actually dropping or withdrawing from all classes for the quarter.
Aid for subsequent quarters will be canceled unless the student notifies Student Financial Services that they plan to return. Refer to the Satisfactory Academic Progress Requirements for Financial Aid Recipients Policy for more information.
For graduate students, the official withdrawal date will be the date of the online withdrawal transaction. If a student begins attendance but ceases to attend classes without notifying the University and the last date of attendance cannot be documented, the required return of financial aid will be based on attendance for 50 percent of the quarter and the student will not be eligible for a tuition refund.
The Student Financial Services Office will determine a student’s eligibility for a refund of charges for the quarter based on the student’s official date of withdrawal as described above. Tuition refund periods and amounts are given in the Tuition and Fees section of this catalog.
Federal regulations require that federal funds be returned to federal programs based on the percent of the term remaining after the student is no longer enrolled unless the student has completed more than 60 percent of the term. If the student has completed more than 60 percent of the term, no return of federal funds is required. If the student has completed less than 60 percent of the term, the Student Financial Services Office will determine how much federal aid was unearned as defined in federal regulations, and then return the unearned aid in the following order:
- Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan
- Federal Graduate PLUS Loan
- Federal TEACH Grant
- Other Title IV Programs
Seattle University is required to return, on the student’s behalf, the balance of unearned aid to the federal programs. Work study funding is not included in the calculation that determines the student’s return amount and the student will not be required to repay any work study payments received for hours worked. The student will be responsible for repaying, in accordance with the terms of the master promissory note, any balance owed on the federal student loans disbursed to them that is not required to be returned by the university.
Federal law requires students who have received federal student loans while attending Seattle University to complete loan exit counseling through Seattle University. That counseling provides information about the student’s rights and responsibilities for loan repayment. Loan repayment will begin at the end of the student’s grace period(s) as defined by the master promissory note(s) the student completed to receive the loans.
If most of a student’s tuition costs were covered by financial aid, then most of their refund will be returned to those financial aid programs. This does not apply to any private educational loans received. Repayment of these loans is solely the responsibility of the borrower once the funds have been applied to the student’s account.
If payments were made with check or credit card, the amount refunded will be based on the applicable refund percentage at the time the student withdrew.
In some cases, the changes in the amount of financial aid earned prior to a student’s complete withdrawal may result in a balance due from the student to the university. In these cases, Student Financial Services mails a revised student account invoice to inform the student of the amount owed as a result of their complete withdrawal. The student’s future registration will be blocked and transcripts will be withheld until this balance is paid.
Students granted a hardship withdrawal by their dean should keep in mind this withdrawal is for academic purposes only; tuition refunds follow the standard refund policy and are based on the official withdrawal date. A separate petition is required to request an exception to the standard refund policy. These requests are typically approved only if there was a death in the student’s immediate family or the student had an illness or injury that required three or more days of hospitalization.
Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for Financial Aid Recipients
Students receiving financial aid must:
- Maintain a minimum cumulative grade point average (GPA) and
- Complete their degrees within the maximum time frame allowed and
- Maintain progress toward their degrees at a minimum cumulative pace.
These requirements apply to a student’s entire period of attendance at Seattle University, and in some instances may include enrollment at other institutions before transferring to Seattle University, even though the student may not have received financial aid for all the terms in which they were enrolled.
It is important for financial aid recipients to understand that satisfactory academic progress requirements and enrollment standards for financial aid purposes may not be the same as those for academic purposes. It is possible to be making satisfactory academic progress for academic purposes while at the same time not making satisfactory academic progress for financial aid purposes. Therefore, it is important that students contact Student Financial Services to talk with a counselor when considering reducing the number of credits for which they are enrolled.
Satisfactory academic progress for eligibility to receive federal and institutional aid is reviewed at the end of each spring quarter. For state aid, progress is reviewed at the end of each quarter of enrollment for which state aid is received. While students will be notified via email if they have not maintained satisfactory academic progress, it is their responsibility to monitor their own progress.
Financial aid will be suspended for students who do not make satisfactory academic progress for financial aid purposes as outlined briefly above and explained in detail below. That suspension may be appealed as explained in the Appeals section below.
Grade Point Average (GPA)
Federal regulations require that students maintain GPAs that are consistent with successful completion of their program:
Undergraduate students are required to maintain a cumulative GPA of at least 2.0 or the minimum cumulative GPA required by their program, whichever is higher.
Graduate students are required to maintain a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 or the minimum cumulative GPA required by their program, whichever is higher.
Maximum Time Frame
Federal regulations require that the institution establish the standard length of time that students can receive aid while pursuing a degree. This requirement is called the “maximum time frame” for aid eligibility and, for undergraduate students, includes all applicable credits earned from all institutions attended since high school.
For its undergraduate students, Seattle University has established a maximum time frame for the receipt of financial aid as the earlier of:
- Attempting 125% of the minimum number of credits required for a student’s degree, or
- Completing all courses required to earn a degree, regardless of whether or not the student chooses to receive a diploma at that point. For instance, even though the student’s intent is to earn two degrees, eligibility for financial aid ends when the coursework necessary to receive one of those degrees has been completed.
For graduate students, the maximum time frame of eligibility to receive federal financial aid is 6 years (24 quarters) as long as the minimum, cumulative GPA and pace requirements continue to be met.
Pace measures progress toward a student’s degree within the maximum time frame and is calculated by dividing the cumulative number of credits the student has completed by the cumulative number of credits the student has attempted at the end of any review period.
Seattle University has established the minimum acceptable cumulative pace to be 80%. Pace considerations:
· For students with transfer credits, all accepted credits count as both attempted and completed for the purpose of evaluating pace.
· A passing grade includes A, A-, B+, B, B-, C+, C, C-, D+, D, D-, CR and P. A passing grade for financial aid considerations may not allow progression in the major and may not be accepted to fulfill a degree requirement.
· Incomplete (I’s), suspended (N’s), in progress (IP’s), missing grades (M’s), withdrawals (W’s), hardship withdrawals (HW’s) and failed classes (F’s) count as attempted credits but not completed credits.
o At the time incomplete, no grade, and missing grades are converted to a passing grade, they are considered in the calculation as completed credits.
o If a class is repeated, successfully completed credits count only once; but each enrollment will count as credits attempted. Additionally:
§ Students who repeat a class they have previously failed may receive financial aid for each time the class is repeated until they receive a passing grade.
§ Students may only receive financial aid for one re-take of a class for which they’ve previously received a passing grade.
o Coursework that may not apply to the degree, such as Culture and Language Bridge courses, will be counted toward the qualitative (GPA) component of satisfactory progress, although will not be included in the cumulative GPA on the student’s transcript. This coursework will not be counted toward satisfactory academic progress’s pace quantitative component.
o Audit grades (Y’s) and audit withdrawal grades (YW) have no impact on pace as they are not included in either attempted or earned credits.
o Credits earned by means other than by completing a college level course at another institution do not count as either attempted or completed credits.
Students must complete the minimum number of credits based on:
- The higher of their actual enrollment status (full-time, three-quarter-time, half-time or less than half-time) or
- The enrollment status for which they received financial aid, as noted on the “Enrollment Status” line of their award letter.
For example, if a student receives aid for initial enrollment of half-time (6-8 credits at the undergraduate level) but adds credits later in the term resulting in full-time enrollment, progress will be evaluated based on that full-time enrollment.
Enrollment status is defined as:
12 credits minimum;
15 credits strongly recommended
6 credits per quarter
9 credits per quarter
4 or 5 credits per quarter
6 credits per quarter
3 credits per quarter
Less Than Half-time
The # of credits for which you enroll
The # of credits for which you enroll
Less than full time enrollment
To be eligible for financial aid for less than full-time enrollment, federal, state and/or institutional aid may require pro-ration based on the reduced enrollment level which may, in turn, result in a reduction in the financial aid.
Institutional aid includes aid awarded through Student Financial Services and other offices at Seattle University which originates from the institution’s general fund, departmental funds, the financial aid budget, gifts to the university, and endowed scholarship funds.
Considerations for receiving institutional aid:
- Students must maintain full-time enrollment fall, winter and spring terms to receive their institutional aid.
- Institutional aid will be pro-rated, rather than withdrawn, if a student isn’t required to enroll full-time in their final quarter in order to complete their degree requirements.
- Institutional aid is not available during summer term.
Additional Requirements for Specific Institutional Scholarships
All institutional gift aid is limited to the student’s class standing when they are admitted to Seattle University as outlined above in the “Maximum Time Frame” section.
All scholarship recipients must maintain a minimum cumulative pace of 80% as outlined above in the “Pace” section.
It may be possible for students who have met the maximum time frame and pace requirements, but who did not maintain the required cumulative GPA (see specifics below), to improve their GPA by taking classes in the summer (without aid). For more information about this option, students should contact Student Financial Services to talk with a counselor.
In addition to the named scholarships below, there are other institutional scholarships which come with specific requirements. Those requirements are disclosed in the offer letter associated with those scholarships.
3.0 Minimum Cumulative GPA Required for Certain Institutional Scholarship Recipients
Students who received a Sullivan Leadership Award or a Presidential, Trustee, Campion, Messina, Xavier, Bannan or Honors Scholarship when entering Seattle University must meet all the standard satisfactory academic progress requirements outlined above and maintain a cumulative grade point average (GPA) requirement of at least 3.0. Failure to meet this standard for the Sullivan Leadership Award, Bannan or Honors Scholarship at the spring review may result in suspension of these awards.
Failure to meet this standard for the other scholarships listed in the paragraph above will result in a year of scholarship probation. Failure to meet the 3.0 minimum cumulative GPA requirement by the end of the probation year will result in the replacement of the scholarship by the next lower scholarship (if minimum GPA requirements are met for that level scholarship) in the year in which the student entered. For recipients of the lowest scholarship, failure to meet the minimum GPA requirement in the probation year will result in a fifty percent reduction of that scholarship for subsequent years.
Alaska State Loan Borrowers
Alaska State Student Loans are available only to students or their family members who are residents of Alaska. Students may receive these funds in addition to, or in lieu of, Federal Stafford Direct Loans.
Students or their family members who are residents of Alaska also have the opportunity to apply for an alternative education loan from the Alaska Advantage Program. These loans are credit based and students or their family members may borrow up to the annual limit of the loan programs.
Appeals for reinstatement of Alaska loan eligibility are made to the Alaska Student Loan Commission.
More information is available at the Alaska Commission on Post Secondary Education’s web site.
Satisfactory academic progress for financial aid purposes is reviewed annually at the end of spring quarter. Student Financial Services notifies students via their Seattle University email account if it appears that they have not made satisfactory academic progress. Students who failed to make satisfactory progress due to unanticipated circumstances beyond their control that prevented regular progress, such as illness or injury, a serious illness or death in the student’s family, may appeal to have their aid reinstated. Students begin the appeal process by contacting a Student Financial Services Counselor by phone at 206-220-8020, by email at email@example.com or by coming to the Student Financial Services Office in the University Services Building, Room 105 to see a counselor during that office’s walk-in appointment hours which are posted on the Student Financial Services web site: www.seattleu.edu/sfs. Counselors work with students to determine the best course of action based on each student’s specific circumstances.
If the student and counselor determine that submitting an appeal is the best next step, the student will be given a Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeal Form on which to provide the following information:
- An explanation of the special circumstances that prevented the student from meeting satisfactory academic progress requirements for financial aid and
- What has changed in the student’s situation that will allow them to regain satisfactory academic progress in the future and
- Any supplemental documentation that supports the student’s case. In the case of maximum time frame, students must provide an academic plan as described in the next paragraph.
Because eligibility to receive financial aid is suspended pending the outcome of an appeal and the appeal process can take a few weeks to complete, it is important to contact a Student Financial Services Counselor just as soon as possible to begin the process. This is particularly important if you want to receive financial aid for a summer session.
The Student Financial Services Counselor will review the student’s appeal and make one of the following determinations:
If it appears possible and likely that you will be able to resume progress within the next quarter:
- The student will be placed on probation for that quarter,
- The student’s progress will be monitored at the end of that quarter,
o If the student is successful, the probationary status will be lifted and the student will again be considered to be making satisfactory progress
o If the student is not successful, eligibility will again be suspended and the student will again have the right to appeal that suspension
- Each appeal will be considered on its own merit. However, while there is no limit to the number of appeals a student may submit, repeat appeals must generally be for reasons different than those of previous appeal to be approved and will take longer to process because they will be reviewed by a committee of Student Financial Services Counselors.
If it appears unlikely that the student will be able to resume progress within the next quarter and/or the request is that eligibility to receive institutional gift aid be extended, the student will be required to work with an academic adviser to develop an academic plan that, when followed, will
- Set the requirements the student will be required to meet to ensure that they are able to meet the institution’s satisfactory academic progress standards by a designated point within the maximum time frame, or
- Indicate the courses required for completion of the student’s degree in support of their request that their eligibility to receive institutional aid be extended.
o The plan will designate, quarter-by-quarter, the courses, number of credits of enrollment and GPA that must be earned in order to regain progress.
o The student’s progress will be monitored each quarter.
§ If the student successfully follows the academic plan, they will continue to be eligible to receive financial aid for the following quarter.
§ If the student is not able to successfully follow the academic plan, their eligibility to receive financial aid will be suspended and the student will again have the right to appeal that suspension.
Each appeal will be considered on its own merit. However, while there is no limit to the number of appeals a student may submit, repeat appeals must generally be for reasons different than those of previous appeal to be approved and will take longer to process because they will be reviewed by a committee of Student Financial Services Counselors.
Readmitted students who were not making satisfactory academic progress as financial aid recipients when they left Seattle University must resolve that deficiency under the policy in place when they re-enter. Readmitted students should make an appointment with a Student Financial Services Counselor who will make a determination about how the student needs to proceed using the options outlined above for continuing students.
If the student’s appeal is denied, they will be notified of that decision via their Seattle University email address. A student may appeal that decision by sending an email or letter to the Director of Student Financial Services, explaining in as much detail as possible why they’re asking that the decision be reversed.
Regaining Eligibility to Receive Financial Aid
If a student’s aid eligibility is suspended due to failure to make satisfactory academic progress, they may be able to regain eligibility by pursuing their education without the benefit of financial assistance from Seattle University. This may involve taking additional classes at Seattle University to raise their cumulative GPA to an acceptable level, or taking credits at Seattle University or another institution to regain “pace.” Please note that taking credits from another institution will require official transcripts and evaluation of transfer credit, and sometimes an application for readmission, before eligibility can be restored.
Because regaining eligibility is generally difficult to do, Student Financial Services highly recommends that students meet with a Student Financial Services Counselor to ensure that they understand what is required to regain eligibility. When a student believes they have regained satisfactory progress and are again eligible to receive financial aid at Seattle University, they must submit a request to the Student Financial Services office to confirm that they have regained eligibility. If additional courses were taken, that request must be submitted after the student’s courses have been evaluated and posted to their Seattle University transcript by the Office of the Registrar.