COVID-19 EMERGENCY FUNDS

As we make necessary precautions at FAU in response to the coronavirus, many students are suddenly facing a set of challenges, including the inability to secure housing, afford basic needs, find access to resources for online learning, and more.  The Office of Student Financial Aid may be able to provide assistance. This funding is intended to bridge a gap to cover education-related expenses.

Resources:

  • Are you taking advantage of FAFSA?  Have you considered student loans?  View your current financial aid offer.
  • Request a Short Term Advance
  • Request Emergency Funding
    • In order to request funding, please complete this application
    • Please Note:  Eligibility will be reviewed on a case by case basis taking into consideration several factors, including financial need, circumstances, etc.

 

COVID-19 and YOUR FINANCIAL AID

The information below may change with updates to federal and state guidance - we will update these frequently asked questions as needed. The Office of Student Financial Aid is here for you! 

I am an undergraduate student considering opting into pass/fail grading. How will this impact my federal financial aid?

 There are requirements that you must meet at the end of each semester to maintain your eligibility for most types of federal financial aid (for example, Pell Grants, Direct Subsidized/Unsubsidized Loans, and Work Study).

  • GPA: The first requirement is to maintain a minimum 2.0 institutional GPA. You also need to maintain an overall GPA of at least 2.0 (including your transfer coursework).  Pass/Fail grades will not be calculated into your GPA.           
  • PACE: Your “pace” of completion refers to the percentage of credits that you earn out of  the credits that you attempt. You need to complete at least 67% of the credits that you attempt, both institutionally and overall (including your transfer coursework). Any grade of F, W, or Incomplete will count against your completion rate. A “Pass” grade is earned, but a “Fail” grade is not earned.

For example, imagine that a student has attempted 100 credits at FAU with no transfer coursework. They have earned all of those credits (with no F, I, or W grades). This Spring, the student attempts 6 credits. They earn a “Pass” grade in 3 of those credits, but for the remaining 3 credits the student has a grade of “Fail”. At the end of the Spring term, we will calculate that the student has earned 103 out of 106 attempted credits.  They have a completion rate of 97% - well over the 67% minimum requirement!

There are some additional eligibility requirements, which you can review here: http://www.fau.edu/finaid/resources/policies/#progress

I am a graduate student considering opting into satisfactory/unsatisfactory grading. How will this impact my federal financial aid?

There are requirements that you must meet at the end of each semester to maintain your eligibility for most types of federal financial aid (for example, Direct Unsubsidized Loans or PLUS loans).

  •  GPA: The first requirement is to maintain a minimum 3.0 institutional GPA. You also need to maintain an overall GPA of at least 3.0 (including any transfer coursework).  Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory grades will not be calculated into your GPA. 
  •  PACE: Your “pace” of completion refers to the percentage of credits that you earn out of the credits that you attempt. You need to complete at least 67% of the credits that you attempt, both institutionally and overall (including your transfer coursework). Any grade of F, W, or Incomplete will count against your completion rate. A “Satisfactory” grade is earned, but an “Unsatisfactory” grade is not earned.

For example, imagine that a student has attempted 30 credits at FAU with no transfer credits. They have earned all of those credits (with no F, I, or W grades). This Spring, the student attempts 6 credits. They earn a “Satisfactory” grade in 3 of those credits, but for the remaining 3 credits the student has a grade of “Unsatisfactory”. At the end of the Spring term, we will calculate that the student has earned 33 out of 36 attempted credits. Rounding down, they have a completion rate of 91% - well over the 67% minimum requirement!

There are some additional eligibility requirements, which you can review here: http://www.fau.edu/finaid/resources/policies/#progress

I am a scholarship recipient. Can I opt into pass/fail grading?

Scholarships may have their own eligibility criteria that you need to keep in mind. For example, if you are a Bright Futures Medallion recipient, you need to maintain a 2.75 GPA. If you are a Bright Futures Academic recipient, you must maintain a 3.0 GPA. For both Bright Futures scholarships, you need to earn all of the credits that you attempt. A “Fail” grade is not earned.

What happens if I don’t meet the Satisfactory Academic Progress requirements at the end of the Spring term due to COVID-19 related issues?

 If you are not meeting the Satisfactory Academic Progress requirements due to GPA or PACE, you may be asked to submit an appeal to regain your aid eligibility.

If you were meeting all Satisfactory Academic Progress standards prior to the Spring term, and at the end of the Spring term you are not meeting the “pace” requirement, you may be eligible for an automatic warning status – no appeal necessary.

I am unable to come to campus – how can I submit my documents?

The Financial Aid Office is still here to serve you – in more ways than ever! Use OwlFiles to securely submit any documents to our office: https://owlfiles.fau.edu/files/

My family is facing financial difficulties because of COVID-19. What can I do?

If you haven’t yet, you should complete your Free Application for Federal Student Aid at FAFSA.gov with our school code (001481). Complete the 2019-2020 application for the Spring and Summer 2020 semesters. Also, complete the 2020-2021 application for the next school year.  You should do this even if you aren’t sure that you will qualify for aid.

If you have already completed your FAFSA and declined all or a portion of a loan offer, we may be able to reinstate the loan for you if you are enrolled at least half time and meeting all other eligibility criteria. Parents of dependent students and graduate students may be eligible to apply for a PLUS loan at studentloans.gov. Contact us to see if you have remaining loan eligibility for this semester.

The Financial Aid Office may be able to provide additional assistance with the unexpected challenges that our students are facing.  See the information at the top of this page under COVED-19 EMERGENCY FUNDS for details.