Parent & Family Newsletter
Spring 2019, Issue 2
Summer is in full bloom and that means it is time to start preparing for fall, and more importantly, the fall eBill due date of August 5. As this date approaches, phone calls, emails and walk-in visitors to the Financial Aid Office increase dramatically. We want to maximize your student’s opportunities for financial aid and we encourage questions. We also want you and your student to avoid potentially unnecessary wait times or late fees, and offer these recommendations:
- Double-check all financial aid applications to ensure they are submitted and complete.
- Review any letters or emails sent to you in recent weeks by the Financial Aid Office, PHEAA, Federal Student Aid or any external agency or lender. If action is required, do not delay.
- Check SIS for financial information, including an estimate of the cost of attendance (COA) for the 2019-2020 academic year, as we detailed in previous Spring newsletter. Note that, at this time, the Fall COA on SIS is based on the actual number of credits for which your student is scheduled, whereas Spring COA is based on an estimate of 15 credits.
- The Financial Aid Office does not process tuition waivers, reductions or payments from college savings plans or external scholarships, nor can it take payments from students or parents. Contact the Bursar’s Office with questions related to these topics.
The Financial Aid Office Staff continue to review aid applications to determine eligibility for Fall Semester. We thank you in advance for your patience during this very busy time!
Reminder of upcoming deadlines:
Parent Access to Student Records
On-Campus Housing Information
Fall 2019 On-Campus Housing Check-In
On-campus housing and Welcome Weekend check-in will be Saturday, August 17, at assigned times between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. in the Bush Campus Center and will utilize a card-swipe check-in process. If you have been issued your Penn College ID, bring it to the Campus Center for check-in to expedite the process. New student check-in times are as follows (scheduled by last name):
• A-F: 8-10 a.m.
• G-K: 10 a.m.-noon
• L- Q: noon-2 p.m.
• R-Z: 2-4 p.m.
Returning Students can check in on Sunday, August 18 between the hours of 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. at the main gate of their assigned residence hall. Students in Rose Street Commons should report to the Dauphin Hall Residence Life Office.
Additional information can be found at: https://www.pct.edu/campus-life/orientation/welcome-weekend
As a reminder, all students are required to have had the meningitis vaccination within the past five years and provide required documentation prior to moving into on-campus housing. For more information and documentation forms, visit the College Health Services Website:
On-Campus Housing Availability
Is your student still working on finalizing his/her living arrangements? Limited space is still available in On-Campus Housing for both new and returning students. If you would like additional information, contact the Residence Life Office at (570) 320-8023 or check out our website at: https://www.pct.edu/campus-life/campus-housing. On-Campus housing gives students the convenience, security and support they need to be successful in their course of study and helps them meet people and become immersed in campus life.
College Health Services
As a parent of a college student, you play a key role in your student’s health and wellness. Even though your child may be miles away from home, you will still be a primary source of health information for them. We hope the following information will assist you in helping your student make a healthy transition to college life.
Immunizations, Health History and Physical Examinations
• Are your student’s immunizations up to date? Boosters for meningitis and tetanus/diphtheria/pertussis may be needed. On campus housing students are required to have the meningitis vaccine (one dose after their 16th birthday.) Submit immunization records to College Health Services by following the instructions on the Health Records/Immunization Requirements page. If your student needs a medical or religious exemption from the Penn College immunization requirements, please visit the Waiver Request Form.
• A pre-college physical exam is not required by Pennsylvania College of Technology. However, many parents and students choose to have this done before starting college; this is a good time to update any needed immunizations and for your student to discuss any health concerns or questions with their healthcare provider. (Athletics and Nursing and Health Science programs have their own requirements for physical exams and/or health requirements.)
• All students must have an incoming health history on file with College Health Services. If your student has a chronic or recurrent health problem, send a summary letter from your local physician with your student. The summary letter can be turned in to College Health Services and added to your student’s Electronic Medical Record (EMR).
• Make sure your student knows their current medications and allergies.
• It may be a good idea to talk with your student about decisions they are likely to encounter at college, such as alcohol and other drug use, managing time, getting adequate sleep, stress management, nutrition, fitness, sexual behavior, and financial responsibility.
• Let them know what your expectations are and that you are available to listen.
• As your student's healthcare provider while at college, we are legally required to protect the privacy of their health information. If your student is 18 years of age or older, we cannot provide you with any of their health information, including billing information, unless they sign a release of information form. This form can be filled out in our office (The Bush Campus Center, room 150.)
Suggested health supplies to send to college with your student. *Some of these items are also available in the College Health Services Self-Care area for free:
• A thermometer
• *Pain relievers (like Tylenol and Ibuprofen)
• *Cold/sinus medicine (like Sudafed)
• Cough syrup (like Robitussin or Mucinex)
• *Hand sanitizer
• Allergy medicine (like Allegra, Zyrtec, or Claritin)
• *First aid supplies, including Band-Aids, antibiotic ointment for cuts/scrapes, hydrocortisone cream for rashes and itching, ice pack
Care for Ongoing Conditions
• Have a plan in place for your student to manage any chronic conditions.
• If your student has Attention Deficit Disorder (Add/ADHD) learning disabilities, psychological disabilities, and/or physical disabilities, please contact Disability Services.
• If your student would benefit from ongoing counseling support, please contact Counseling Services.
We are here to help your student succeed by providing quality healthcare, education, and health promotion. Contact us at email@example.com for any questions or concerns.
Preparing for college is more than just academics and testing. Being emotionally ready creates the greatest opportunity for success. Students and families, Set to Go (https://www.settogo.org/)
is your guide to the transition from high school to college and adulthood. Students can learn how to identify and develop important emotional and practical skills, increase knowledge of important physical and mental health issues, and receive guidance about adjusting to life at college. Parents, this guide will better inform you about basic life skills, social and emotional skills, mental health and substance abuse literacy, and the transition to college, and provide related resources. If you have questions, please don’t hesitate to contact Counseling Services, (570) 327-4765 or visit https://www.pct.edu/campus-life/counseling-services for additional information.
Penn Pals Program Helps New Wildcats
Penn Pals is a peer mentoring program designed to help any first-year student transition smoothly into life on campus. Current Penn College students volunteer for the program and receive training in the spring semester, then over the summer months and into the fall semester, new students can request to be paired up with them. Students can ask questions about on-campus living, classroom expectations, and any other issues that might be on their mind as they get ready to face this new experience. The pairs interact during the summer via email or text messaging and then try to meet up face-to-face when they arrive on campus. The “pal” sometimes serves as a first crucial contact on campus until students can begin to build a bigger social circle. These experienced student volunteers often say they wish they had a “Penn Pal” when they started out to help ease the stress and confusion often experienced during those first few weeks. In fact, some of our volunteers become Penn Pals because they had a “Penn Pal” when they first began their education here and they say it really helped them settle in. Please encourage your son or daughter to consider requesting a Penn Pal; it can be a helpful, and fun, experience. Students can request a Penn Pal by completing the request form at:
Or by contacting Melissa Stocum at firstname.lastname@example.org
Students benefit from donors support
A video expression of gratitude highlighted the 15th annual reception recognizing the alumni, corporate partners, friends, retirees and colleagues whose benevolence sparked the life-changing transformation of these Penn College students into successful graduates.
“Thanks to you, our students experience cutting-edge equipment and technology in our classrooms and labs, such as The Dr. Welch Workshop – our makerspace on campus – and the Shell Polymers Rotational Molding Center of Excellence,” President Davie Jane Gilmour said to those gathered around the Donor Wall in the Student & Administrative Services Center.
Read article on PCToday https://pctoday.pct.edu/donors-applauded-for-investing-in-tomorrow-makers/
Pennsylvania Residents and PA State Grant News
During May, the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency (PHEAA) will notify students with a complete FAFSA about their 2019-20 state grant eligibility. First-time students must also have completed their Pennsylvania State Grant Form in order for PHEAA to determine eligibility. PHEAA will email students and parents via email addresses provided on the FAFSA or on PHEAA’s records. The PHEAA emails will direct students to its secure Account Access site to learn about eligibility. Later in May, after PHEAA notifies all students, the Financial Aid Office will receive students’ PHEAA State Grant award and eligibility information, which students can then view via SIS.
Per PHEAA regulations, the Financial Aid Office must then further review all students awarded by PHEAA. If we determine a student does not satisfy all policies, we must inform PHEAA, which will then reduce or remove the award. The most common PHEAA policies are:
- PHEAA Satisfactory Academic Progress (for those that had a previous PHEAA award)
- Limits on the number of semesters of PHEAA Grants in a program of study
- PHEAA Distance Learning Policy
First-time students should make sure that their State Grant Form is complete by logging on to AES Account Access. If not complete, follow the directions and complete as quickly as possible.
First-time and returning students are sometimes selected for a PHEAA process called ‘Validation’ or PHEAA may have questions that need answered before it can determine eligibility. When this happens, PHEAA will email or send a paper letter that states what is needed. If you or your student have any questions about the State Grant Form, Account Access, or any communication from PHEAA, contact PHEAA at 800-692-7392.
Also, note that the e-mail 'domain' that PHEAA uses is @pheaa.org. You and your student should “whitelist” this domain in both of your e-mail accounts so PHEAA messages will not go to Spam or Junk folders.
The end is near! Top off your student’s successful semester with one of these great Wildcat Wishes Packages – Munchies, Ice Cream Sundae Treat, Exam Cram
Got the munchies? This package supplies chips, nachos, dip, salsa and soda for your student’s munchies craving.
Ice Cream Sundae Treat
I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream. This package includes 2 pints ice cream of your student’s choice along with ice cream cones and an assortment of toppings.
Exam coming up? This snack pack will help your student "power" through their exam. Package includes Pop-tarts, microwave popcorn, snickers bar, Nutri-grain bar, Power Bar, Almonds and two Rockstar energy drinks.