Financial Aid Award Notification and Procedures

William Paterson University of New Jersey
Financial Aid Award Notification and Procedures

Please read this information carefully and keep it for reference. By applying for student assistance (grants, loans, work-study and/or scholarships), you are indicating that you understand the procedures and accept the responsibilities involved in receiving financial aid. You should be aware that if you or your family knowingly make false statements or misrepresentations on your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and/or any application for financial assistance, you may be liable for prosecution and repayment of all assistance obtained. William Paterson University (WPU) reserves the right to change or cancel student awards due to new regulations and clarifications, revised allocations, and/or the receipt of additional information concerning the student's financial aid application and/or eligibility.

Awarding of financial assistance by WPU does not imply any obligation or commitment to continue such awards beyond the period indicated. The WPU FAFSA priority filing deadline is April 1. Financial aid funds are contingent upon the availability of funds, actual enrollment, class attendance, demonstration of financial need, compliance with federal, state and institutional requirements and verification, and meeting satisfactory academic progress. All requested documentation must be submitted by June.

Awards will be applied directly to your student account record to offset all duly charged tuition, fees, book deferments, and other charges, which you may incur.  Students may not receive federal aid (Title IV funding) for retaking a previously passed class more than once.  Please note: Scholarships granted by Undergraduate Admissions will only cover tuition, fees, room charges and books/supplies (up to $1,600), and will be reduced by Federal Pell and SEOG Grants, NJ Tuition Aid Grant and other grants & scholarship awards. 

A student’s aid may be reduced or cancelled if the student ceases to attend classes or officially/unofficially withdraws from the University during a semester or session. This may create a balance with the University for tuition, fees, room and meal plan charges, book deferments and/or refunds. Refer to the WPU Student Handbook for the Return of Title IV Refund Policy for federal aid recipients to obtain additional information. Subsequent Financial Aid award notifications that indicate a reduction/cancellation of aid previously awarded should be carefully reviewed since you may now have a balance on your account. Such debt may result in your classes being voided for non-payment. Please access your WP Connect account and review your bill. All initial awards are based on  full-time enrollment. If your enrollment status is less than full-time or has changed, your revised award may reflect aid based on your actual enrollment. If you change/reduce your enrollment after the last day of registration (drop/add period) or after aid disbursement has occurred for a given semester/session, you will be responsible for all overpayments (including bookstore allowance and/or financial aid refund) that are the result of your credit load reduction or change.

The Expected Family Contribution (EFC) is based on the information submitted on the FAFSA and is calculated according to a formula established by federal law. The EFC listed on your Student Aid Report (SAR) is a measure of your family’s financial strength, and indicates the amount of financial resources that should be available to pay for your education. The term Cost of Attendance (COA) refers to the estimated educational expenses that you may incur for the award period. It includes direct charges (such as tuition and fees) that are listed on your bill and indirect expenses (such as an allowance for books, supplies, room, board, transportation, personal and miscellaneous expenses) that are not listed on your bill. The difference between the COA and the EFC is the student’s financial aid need. The COA should not be confused with the University’s actual bill. 

STUDENT RIGHTS

  • To have complete information regarding fees, payment and refund policies available to you.
  • To have all personal and family financial information treated with confidentiality.
  • To appeal to the Financial Aid Office if your situation warrants reconsideration of financial aid eligibility in accordance with federal and state rules.
  • To decline or reduce a Direct Subsidized/Unsubsidized/Perkins loan award, complete the Loan Cancellation form at www.wpunj.edu/finaid.  Semester amounts must be equal.
  • If you are not planning to attend WPU, send an email to finaid@wpunj.edu and admission@wpunj.edu to alert the University of your decision, and your file will be closed.

STUDENT RESPONSIBILITIES

  • Must attend classes.
  • Advise the Financial Aid Office of any additional aid received that is not indicated on your financial aid award notice.
  • Inform the Registrar and Financial Aid Office if you expect to withdraw (officially or unofficially) from the University. Please refer to the WPU Student Handbook regarding the University Refund Policy, which is different from the federal Financial Aid Return to Title IV Refund (Pell, SEOG, TEACH and all federal loans) Policy.
  • Submit to the Financial Aid Office all documentation requested for verification of information pertaining to your application.
  • Give permission to the Financial Aid Office to release pertinent financial, academic, and other information to donors of aid as requested.
  • Maintain Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP); this policy available at the Financial Aid homepage.
  • Report on your federal income tax return grants and scholarships received in excess of tuition, fees and books (Form 1098-T).              

TYPES OF AID AND PROCEDURES - Financial Aid will not be credited to your student account until your financial aid file is completed and reviewed by the Financial Aid staff. Class attendance is mandatory.

GRANTS AND SCHOLARSHIPS: These are funds which you do not pay back.

Federal Pell Grant: The actual amount of the grant is based on your official EFC and your enrollment status.                             

Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG): This grant (limited amount) is awarded on a first-come, first-serve basis to Pell eligible students with the highest financial need who meet the WPU FAFSA priority filing deadline.

Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant

A student who is not eligible for Pell due to the program’s need requirement, whose parent or guardian was a member of the U.S. Armed Forces who died as a result of military service in Iraq of Afghanistan after September 1, 2001 may be eligible for the Iraq and Afghanistan Services Grant. The additional eligibility requirements for this program include:

• The student must be ineligible for a Federal Pell Grant due only to having less financial need than is required to receive Pell fund, and

• The student must be under 24 years old, or

• The student must have been enrolled in college at least part-time at the time of the parent’s or guardian’s death.

This grant is equal to the amount of the maximum Pell Grant for the award year but cannot exceed the cost of attendance award amounts are subject to change based on federal funding.

Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH): This is a federal grant of up to $4000 per year for students who intend to teach in a public or private elementary or secondary school that serves students from low income families. If you receive a TEACH grant, but do not complete the required teaching service, you will be required to repay the grants as a Federal Unsubsidized Direct Loan, with the interest charged from the date of each TEACH Grant disbursement

New Jersey (NJ) Tuition Aid Grant (TAG), Educational Opportunity Fund (EOF) and Student Tuition Assistance Reward Scholarship II (STARS II): -- All NJ awards require full-time enrollment and attendance, and the student and parent (of a dependent student) be legal NJ residents for at least 12 months before the start of the semester. The actual amount of these New Jersey grants and/or scholarships is based on the official Student Eligibility Notice (SEN) sent to you by the New Jersey Higher Education Student Assistance Authority (HESAA). If the SEN indicates WPU, HESAA will notify WPU directly of a student's approved award. However, if the SEN does not indicate WPU, it must be corrected following the instructions on the SEN. To receive an EOF Grant, you must be accepted into the WPU EOF Program.

William Paterson University Tuition Aid Grant

This award is made annually to those students who qualify for the New Jersey Tuition Aid Grant program (TAG) and are not receiving a full tuition scholarship from the University. Program participation is limited to continuing students only and will be phased out after the award year 2014-2015. 

WPU (Institutional) Scholarships: Awarded to full or part-time students who meet the scholarship specific criteria.

The Unemployment Tuition Waiver Program
The Unemployment Tuition Waiver Program is a joint effort with the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development. Eligible Students obtain a tuition waiver to enroll in an appropriate course of instruction at William Paterson University. The course should provide the student with identifiable skills that will lead to gainful employment. Students seeking this benefit must complete a FAFSA, meet other guidelines and abide by certain restrictions. For additional information and to view the complete policy, please visit the Financial Aid home site at http://www.wpunj.edu/financial-aid.

WORK-STUDY PROGRAM: These programs provide students with the opportunity to work and earn a paycheck.

Federal Work-Study: Students must have a completed FAFSA on file, be eligible to receive aid, have unmet need and must attend a Student Employment Workshop to be considered for jobs. The dates of the workshops, which provide detailed instructions for obtaining employment, can be located on the Financial Aid home page under Student Employment. Jobs are not guaranteed since placement depends on student schedules, skills, student initiative, job availability and federal funding. Earnings under the Federal Work-Study program are not credited to the student's account. The student is paid directly through normal payroll processing after employment has started. Prior to starting employment, students must contact the Student Employment Coordinator in the Financial Aid Office and submit additional application materials. 

Student Assistant Program: Students must have a completed FAFSA on file (with the exception of international students). Eligibility for financial aid and unmet need are not required for this program; however, all other conditions listed under the federal work-study program must be met. 

LOANS - These are funds that MUST be paid back.

William D. Ford Direct Loan Program (Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized): These loans require enrollment of at least 6 credits per semester for undergraduate students and enrollment of at least 5 credits for graduate students. Direct loans cannot be credited to the student's account until the student has completed the Master Promissory Note (MPN) and Entrance Counseling at www.studentloans.gov.  A Subsidized Loan is based on financial need and the federal government pays (subsidizes) the interest on the loan while the student is enrolled at least half-time. An Unsubsidized Loan is not based on need and the student is responsible for the interest on the loan from the date of disbursement until the loan is paid in full. Graduate and professional students are eligible for Unsubsidized Loans only. 

Active Acceptance of your Direct Loans: You must accept your Direct Loans in order for them to be active.  Go to your WP Connect Students Tab and choose the Financial Aid area, then choose My Award Information and the 2014-15 year.  Please follow the instructions to Accept or Decline your full award or to Accept a partial award.  Be sure to check that any award changes will not result in a balance due on your term bill. 

Federal Direct Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS): A FAFSA must be filed and parents must also complete the PLUS request process at www.studentloans.gov.This loan is for the parents of undergraduates students and requires enrollment of at least 6 credits per semester. The parent may apply for a PLUS loan up the total COA minus any financial aid assistance received. A credit check is performed to determine approval; once the application is approved, the parent will need to complete the PLUS MPN. The PLUS loan will be applied directly to the student's account.

Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan:  This loan requires an enrollment of at least 5 credits per semester. Graduate/professional students are eligible to borrower under this program up to the COA minus other estimated financial assistance.  The terms and conditions applicable to PLUS Loans (above) also apply to graduate/professional PLUS Loans.

Federal Perkins Loan: This loan (limited amount) requires enrollment of at least 6 credits per semester and is awarded on a first-come, first-serve basis for eligible students. Students accepting this loan must complete the Perkins Loan Entrance Counseling and a Perkins Loan MPN. Perkins links are on the Financial Aid Homepage: www.wpunj.edu/financial-aid.

Alternative Student Loans:  If additional funding is required, students and parents may consider borrowing from a private lending institution.  A FAFSA must be filed.  Visit the Financial Aid homepage (www.wpunj.edu/financial-aid) to learn more about this option. All alternative loans require a credit check; lender processing time may take up to 3 weeks.

STUDENT REFUND POLICY
Students are entitled to refunds to be used for indirect educational expenses if their total financial aid is in excess of direct charges (e.g., tuition, fees and book allowances). It is the University’s policy to issue student refunds in a timely manner. Federal, State, and Institutional student aid funds must be received by the University and the WPU Financial Aid Office must confirm student enrollment status. Funds are transferred to WPU Student Account Office so refunds can be issued.                                                          

Revised 3/27/14