Financial Aid Withdrawal Policy: Undergraduate Students
Return of Title IV (Federal) Aid
If you withdraw from the University of St. Thomas during a semester, January term or summer session, a calculation of "earned" versus "unearned" federal aid must be determined. In order to earn your financial aid, you must have attended and/or actively participated in the class(es) for which you were registered. This federal policy assumes you earn your aid based on how much time has elapsed in the term at the time that you stopped attending and/or participating in courses. If you receive federal financial aid, that aid may be reduced as a result of your withdrawal.
There are four steps which St. Thomas must complete to comply with the federal policy:
- For each class in which you were registered, we must determine whether you ever attended or participated in any academic activity.
- We must determine the withdrawal date.
- We must calculate the amount of earned federal aid.
- We must return any unearned federal funds to the appropriate program(s).
Upon your withdrawal, the Financial Aid Office will contact your instructors to determine when you last had academic activity in their classes. The date established as the latest date among their responses will act as your withdrawal date in our calculation of earned financial aid.
Unofficial withdrawals may be determined when all of your grades for a term are W and F. In that case, the instructors for the courses with an F grade are contacted to determine last date of attendance and/or academic activity. If you attended any course through the full semester, you have not unofficially withdrawn. If not, the withdrawal date will become the midpoint of the term, unless through contact with instructors we determine that your last date of academic activity is later than the midpoint.
If you withdraw before completing 60 percent of the term, you "earn" federal funds in direct proportion to the length of time you were enrolled. The percentage of earned aid is determined by dividing the total number of calendar days you attended or participated in academic activity by the total number of calendar days in the term. If you complete 60 percent of the term, you earn all federal financial aid for the term.
The responsibility to repay unearned aid is shared by the institution (St. Thomas) and the student. The institution's share is the lesser of unearned aid or unearned institutional charges. The institution will return unearned funds for which it is responsible no later than 45 days from the determination of a student’s withdrawal. The institution's share must be repaid to the federal aid programs in the following order, before the student's share is considered:
- Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan
- Federal Direct Subsidized Loan
- Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan
- Federal Pell Grant
- Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG)
- Other Title IV Aid
If you are required to repay a portion of your loan through the student's share calculation, you will not be expected to return those funds immediately, but rather when repayment begins according to the terms and conditions of the promissory note. If your share includes grant funds, federal rules allow the grant to be reduced by 50 percent, and the University of St. Thomas will repay these grant programs on your behalf. You will then be responsible for repaying this money back to St. Thomas. If this causes undue hardship, a satisfactory payment arrangement can be made with St. Thomas.
If you, or a parent for a Direct Parent PLUS Loan, receive less Title IV aid than the amount earned based on the Return to Title IV Calculation, the institution will offer you a disbursement (referred to as post-withdrawal disbursement) of the earned grant funds that you are eligible for or loan funds that were processed by but for which you did not receive payment prior to your withdrawal date.
Post-withdrawal of Title IV Grant funds: The institution is permitted to credit your student account with the post-withdrawal disbursement of Title IV grant funds without your permission for current charges of tuition, fees, and room and board (if Title IV Authorization is provided) up to the amount of outstanding charges. The institution will obtain your authorization to credit your student account with Title IV grant funds for charges other than current charges. The institution will make the disbursement as soon as possible but no later than 45 days after the date of the school’s determination of your withdrawal.
Post-withdrawal of Title IV Loan funds: The institution will obtain confirmation from you, or parent for a Direct Parent PLUS Loan, before making any disbursement of loan funds that you have accepted/applied for from a post-withdrawal disbursement. The institution will notify you, or the parent for a Direct Parent PLUS Loan, in writing prior to making any post-withdrawal disbursement of loan funds. The information provided will include the details necessary for you (i.e. type and amount of the loan funds), or parent for a Direct Parent PLUS Loan, to make an informed decision as to whether you, or your parent, would like to accept any disbursement of loan funds and this notification will be provided within 30 days of the date of the institution’s determination that you have been withdrawn. This notice will include information that you, or your parent, do have the right to decline all or a portion of the funds. The notice will request written confirmation of any post-withdrawal disbursement that you, or a parent, wish to have disbursed. The institution will make any disbursement approved by you, or the parent, within 180 days from the date of the school’s determination of your withdrawal. If no confirmation is received within 14 days, the institution is not required to make the post-withdrawal disbursement.
Institutional Aid and State Aid Refund Policy
The Return of Title IV Aid calculation, as cited above, only considers federal funds, not institutional, state or outside funding sources that may be included in your financial aid package.
Depending on the timing of your withdrawal, you may qualify for a refund of tuition. If you withdraw during a period of time that allows for a tuition refund, a portion or all of your institutional, state and/or outside funding may need to be reduced or cancelled. If you receive a 100 percent tuition refund on all courses for a particular term, all institutional funds will be returned to the aid program. State funding must be returned to the appropriate aid program(s) in accordance with the refund calculations prescribed by the state’s policies. If your tuition refund was not used to fully repay the Return of Title IV Aid, a proportional share of the remaining tuition refund must be returned to the appropriate state aid program(s). Outside funding will be returned in accordance with the policy of the outside aid provider. In general, outside aid providers request a full refund.
Other Consequences of Withdrawal
In order to continue to be eligible for federal, state and institutional aid, you must maintain satisfactory academic progress toward your degree. The measurement of your progress includes, but is not limited to successfully completing 67% of the courses you attempt.