Financial Aid FAQs
Can you answer a question about my student bill?
Questions regarding payments, credit balances, refunds, the PCT OneCard, etc. should be referred to the Bursar's Office (Student Accounts). Questions about financial aid should be directed to the Financial Aid Office. Financial aid that's been applied for and approved before your student bill is generated will appear on your student bill.
How do I know how much aid I'll receive?
The fastest way to check your aid is through the Student Information System (SIS), via 'Financial Information'. Processing of financial aid for students starting in the fall semester occurs from late winter through the summer, and during the autumn and early winter for students starting in the spring semester. Since awarding of aid is an ongoing process that depends in large part on how promptly you complete applications, you may need to check SIS several times before all aid is posted to your student account. Related information is provided in the next question and answer (below).
Will I receive a financial aid "packaging letter" from Penn College?
You will not receive a comprehensive "packaging letter" because, as a public institution, not a private one, Penn College charges tuition by the credit, rather than one rate for all full-time students. Also, Penn College does not have the large scholarship pool that many private colleges use to "package" financial aid.
However, you will receive a letter from us regarding your eligibility for the Federal Pell Grant after we have received your FAFSA information. As student and parent loans are credited to your student account, we will mail you information on what has been credited.
In addition, your eligibility notice for a state grant should be sent to you directly from your state's higher education agency. For Pennsylvania residents, that information will be e-mailed to you, starting in May.
All of the above notices will occur as we process your financial aid. Refer to the previous question for information on how to easily check your aid.
Do I need to be a full-time student to receive financial aid?
For the most part, the answer is 'no'. Students enrolled in six or more credits per semester needed for their academic program can receive Federal Direct Loans and private alternative loans. Pennsylvania residents eligible for PHEAA State Grants can receive funding if enrolled in six or more credits per semester. Students eligible for Federal Pell Grants can, in most cases, receive funding even if they are enrolled less than half-time.
Many, but not all, Penn College Scholarships do require full-time enrollment. Some external scholarships also require full-time enrollment.
How do Penn College costs and financial aid differ for Pennsylvania residents and out-of-state residents?
The only difference in educational costs results from the difference in tuition rate between in-state and out-of-state residents. There are no differences in eligibility for federal grants and loans. Some Pennsylvania residents qualify for a PHEAA Grant. Scholarships sometimes use location of residence as a criterion.
When will I receive a refund?
If you have a pending credit balance on your student bill, you will receive a refund. You can inquire about refunds at the Bursar's Office (Student Accounts) and learn how to activate your PCT OneCard.
How do I transfer financial aid from another college to Penn College?
Refer to our page for Transfer Students.
If I withdraw from Penn College this semester, but want to return next fall, what must I do to have financial aid again?
You must submit a FAFSA and review your FAA for each academic year you request financial aid. You also need to be aware of policies on satisfactory academic progress. Contact the Financial Aid Office to learn more. To return in a future semester, you may need to complete a Readmission Application through the Admissions Office.
What do I need to accomplish to achieve satisfactory academic progress?
New federal regulations have changed the review of Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) for federal aid, as of the summer of 2011. Students must achieve a Pace of 67% or higher and a Financial Aid SAP GPA of 2.00 or higher, as described in our Satisfactory Academic Progress policy. Pace and SAP GPA both take into account all classes required for your academic program at the time of the SAP Review, including any classes that were attempted prior to your most recent academic year. SAP GPA is not necessarily the same as your graduation GPA that you can view on SIS.Be aware that re-taking a previously passed course may improve your SAP GPA, but will not improve your Pace.
Note that there are separate policies for Federal financial aid and PHEAA Grants.
If I am transferring to Penn College, and I owe money to my previous college, who can I talk to?
You need to discuss bills from your previous college with that college's Bursar's or Billing Office. Most colleges will not release an official grade transcript until past due balances have been paid in full.