The following Award Guide is intended to help you understand your financial aid award and the steps you need to take to received your financial aid award and the steps you need to take to receive your financial aid funds. If you continue to have questions after reviewing the Guide, please feel free to contact Blugold Central..
Types of Financial Aid
Grants are gift assistance that do not require repayment and are targeted to the hightest need students.
Tuition Waivers are a form of grant assistance and are awarded based on financial need or special population status, such as veterans' status.
Scholarships are primarily based on academic merit or special talents, although some scholarships take financial need into consideration.
Non-university Scholarships - Any non-university scholarship checks should be brought to Blugold Central as soon as possible to ensure the scholarship dollars will be on accounts by the time bills are due. In some cases, scholarships may result in the reduction of other need-based aid – primarily loan or work study.
Loans must be repaid. Unlike other aid types, loans must be accepted or declined. There are two main kinds of loans –subsidized and unsubsidized.
Subsidized Federal Student Loans – interest is waived and no payments are required while student is enrolled for halftime or more.
Unsubsidized Federal Student Loans – interest begins to accumulate once loan is disbursed, although payments on the loan are not required while student is enrolled for halftime or more.
Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS Loans) – unsubsidized loan in parent's name; payments and interest begin 60 days after final disbursement for the year. Deferment is available upon request.
Additional Educational Loans – terms vary based on the various loan programs through non-federal lenders.
Federal Work Study offers employment opportunities based on financial need. A work study award is an option to work, not a requirement to work or a guaranteed job.There are two kinds of student employment on-campus - "Federal Work Study" and "Non-Federal Employment". Non-federal student employment positions are open to all UW-Eau Claire students. A work study award allows students to also apply for positions listed as work study on the "Hire a Blugold" job board. Open positions are posted on the job board at: http://www.uweccareerservices.org/
Factors That Impact Eligibility
Additional Resources - Students must notify the Financial Aid office of any additional awards or benefits (e.g. scholarships, tuition reimbursements, etc.) that are not already listed as part of the student's financial aid award. Additional resources can be reported in writing or through Self Service in MyBlugold CampS. (There is an option to "Report Other Financial Aid" in Self Service, under Financial Aid.) Although additional resources may require an adjustment to other need-based aid, every effort will be made to ensure the adjustment is as advantageous as possible to the student, reducing loan or work study first.
Enrollment Status - Students should verify that aid is awarded for each semester that they plan to attend and that the enrollment status listed on the Financial Aid Notification (fulltime, halftime, less than halftime) is accurate for each semester. Changes in enrollment status may impact the amount of financial aid eligibility. The final financial aid award for each semester will be based on the number of credits the student is enrolled in on the tenth day of classes.
Changing Living Arrangements - To calculate your aid eligibility, we have used the housing status you reported on your FAFSA (living with parent or not living with parent). If your plans have changed, please correct the information on the FAFSA.
Cost of Attendance - Blugold Central establishes standard budgets that show average costs for the academic year. Standard budgets include estimates for tuition and fees, and room and board, books, personal, and transportational expenses. For specifics about estimated costs, see the "Costs"section of the Financial aid Website or the individualized "Shopping Sheet" in MyBlugold CampS. Students who experience unusual expesnses may request an increase in their budget.
Special Circumstances - Students and families, who have extenuating circumstances that affect their finances, or who experience a significant change in their financial situation, may request a review of their financial aid eligibility. Students (or parents) are encouraged to explain those circumstances in writing, and a counselor will review the situation for a possible award adjustment. Students and families are always welcome to make an appointment with a counselor to discuss the situation directly.
Satisfactory Academic Progress - in order to receive and continue to receive financial aid, students must meet the following three components of academic progress.
1) Maintain a minimum cumulative 2.0 grade point average.
2) Successfully complete 67% of total enrolled credits. Failing a class or maintaining an incomplete in a class is not considered successfully completing the class.
3) Complete a degree within 150% of the published length of the degree program.
For a copy of the complete policy, see the Financial Aid website under "Policies" .
Need More Money?
If your financial aid and other resources cannot meet your expenses, you may want to review "Need More Money?' at http://www.uwec.edu/finaid/costs/moremoney.htm
Disbursement of Aid
Financial aid is disbursed onto students' accounts starting the first week of classes. Grants, loans, and scholarships are applied to university charges (i.e. tuition/fees, residence hall, and meal plan expenses). If there are remaining financial aid funds after the university charges are paid, the balance is given to the student - either through direct deposit or a check - for books and living expenses.
Loans - Loan funds must be actively accepted in MyBlugold CampS and cannot be disbursed until a signed promissory note is on file and entrance counseling is complete.
First-time student loan borrowers at UW-Eau Claire will be sent information about completing an online entrance counseling and a master promissory note. Continuing students should not have to repeat these steps. See the loan section of the Financial Aid website for details: http://www.uwec.edu/finaid/aid/loans .
Employment - Paychecks for all student employment, including work study, are based on hours worked. Students receive their paychecks biweekly and must arrange to have them directly deposited through the Student Payroll office (Schofield 219).
Change Requests - Requests for changes in a student's award may cause a delay in receiving financial aid funds. Students should allow 10 to 15 working days for a change to be processed.
Re-apply Each Year - Students need to re-apply for aid each year by filing an updated FAFSA after January 1. Priority filing deadline is April 15 for the most advantageous aid.
Special Programs for MN Residents
Minnesota residents should be sure they have completed the MN Reciprocity Form for the appropriate academic year. Students may apply for reciprocity using the Online Tuition Reciprocity Application . Those not approved for reciprocity will be assessed tuition at the non-resident rate.
The SELF Loan is available only to Minnesota residents. Interest must be paid on a quarterly basis and the loan requires a co-signer. Although this loan is not need-based, a FAFSA must be completed. Entrance counseling and applications are available on-line at: www.uwec.edu/finaid/aid/SelfLoan.htm
Student Work Experience
UW-Eau Claire places a strong emphasis on quality work experiences. There are many reasons why students should consider working part time on-campus. Studies show that students who work part time while in college (20 hours/wk or less) actually perform better academically and are more likely to stay in schoool than students who do not work at all.
Benefits of Student Work Experience include:
- Developing marketable job skills
- Applying academic skills in the "real" world
- Connecting with the university
- Increasing income to help offset college expenses (and reducing debt)
- Boosting future career search by establishing references and gaining experience
Types of Student Employment
On-Campus - There are two kinds of student employment on-campus - "Federal Work Study" and "Non-Federal Employment". Non-federal student employment positions are open to all UW-Eau Claire students. A work study award allow students to also apply for work study positions that are available both on-campus and in community service positions off-campus. Open positions are posted on the on-line Job Board.
Off-campus - The University maintains a Job Location and Develpment Program that develops hundreds of part-time jobs in the local community each year, as well as summer positions. Those jobs are opened to any UW-Eau Claire student.
How to Find a Job
- Job Board - Open positions, on- and off- campus, are posted on the online Job Board at: http://www.uweccareerservices.org/ contact information is included in the job postings, and students should follow-up with employers directly.
- Contacting Departments - Students may want to contact departments where they would like to work. Some of the largest employers -on-campus include: University Residence Halls, McIntyre Library, Davies Center, Recreation, Learning and Technology Services, Facilities management, university Food Services, University Bookstore.
Hiring Procedures for On-campus Employment
Supervisors of student employees and Student Payroll office will assist with the hiring procedures. Details about the procedures are available at: http://www.uwec.edu/finaid/employment/Once-You-are-Hired-Hiring-Procedures.htm .
Paychecks: Students receive payment for hours worked every two weeks. All payments are directly deposited into either a checking or savings account; no checks will be issued. Direct deposit forms can be completed by accessing www.uwec.edu/hr/forms