The primary purpose of Siena Heights University’s financial aid program is to provide assistance to accepted students who, without such aid, would be unable to attend Siena Heights University. An award package is offered after a student has fulfilled the following:
- Acceptance for admission to Siena Heights University
- Completion of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
- If you are selected for verification, you will need to either log back into your FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid), select Make FAFSA Correction and then request to transfer federal tax return information for both you and your parents (if applicable) using the IRS data retrieval tool, or alternately you may submit copies of federal tax transcript(s) to the Financial Aid Office, along with the appropriate verification form. Any other requested information must also be received before aid can be processed per Federal Financial Aid regulations.
If you need to request a federal tax transcript you can do so by calling 1-800-908-9946 or going to the IRS website at www.irs.gov.
Students should complete their file by March 1 to be given priority consideration for the following academic year. Files completed after that date will be considered late applications and will be awarded aid in the order in which the applications were completed.
Note: Filing a completed Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form allows the Financial Aid Office to determine the maximum amount of assistance for which a student is eligible.
To receive federal student aid, you must meet certain requirements. You must:
- Be a U.S. citizen or eligible noncitizen.
- Have a valid Social Security Number.
- Be registered with Selective Service if you are male and between the ages of 18 to 25 years of age.
- Have a high school diploma or a General Education Development (GED) Certificate.
- Be enrolled or accepted for enrollment as a regular student working toward a degree or certificate in an eligible program at a school that participates in the federal student aid programs.
- Not have a drug conviction for an offense that occurred while you were receiving federal aid (such as grants, loans, or work-study).
Note: you must not owe a refund on a federal grant, be in default on a federal student loan and you must demonstrate financial need (except for unsubsidized loans).
Federal Return of Title IV Funds Policy
The Office of Financial Aid is required by the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended in 1998, to determine the amount of financial aid that a student “earned” for an academic semester when the student does not complete at least one course within that semester. When the “earned” aid is less than the disbursed aid, the institution and student are responsible for returning the “unearned” disbursed funds to the appropriate agency.
- Any student who does not complete at least one course within an academic semester for which financial aid is received, or could have been received, will be reviewed for a Return of Title IV Funds calculation. This includes students who drop, officially or unofficially withdraw, are dismissed or take a leave of absence during a semester.
- The U.S. Department of Education (ED) also requires Siena Heights University to perform a Return of Title IV Funds calculation for any student enrolled in multiple parts of a term who ceases attendance during the first part of the term, unless the student provides written confirmation of future attendance for the second part of the term courses.
- The Federal Return of Title IV Funds policy determines the amount of aid earned by dividing the number of calendar days up to the withdrawal date by the total number of calendar days in the enrollment period.
- The Return of Title IV Funds is based on the premise that students “earn” financial aid for each calendar day that they attend classes. For example, if a student attends 32 days of a semester that is 80 calendar days in length, the student will have “earned” 40 percent of his or her aid.
- Students who complete more than 60 percent of the semester are considered to have earned 100 percent of their financial aid.
The “unearned” portion of aid is refunded to the appropriate programs in the following order:
- Unsubsidized Stafford Loan
- Subsidized Stafford Loan
- Federal PLUS Loan
- Federal Pell Grant
- Federal SEOG
- TEACH Grant Funds
Calculating “Earned” Institutional Aid
- Siena Heights University uses the results from the Federal Return of Title IV calculation to determine the amount of earned institutional aid a student is eligible to receive.
- Example: If a student earned 50% of their federal aid (as determined by the federal calculation), the institutional scholarships and grants will also be reduced to 50%.
Cost of Attendance/Student Budgets
The Financial Aid department calculates budgets for every student who applies for aid in order to determine a student’s need. The cost of attendance includes the current rate of tuition and room and board as well as an estimation of costs of books, transportation, and personal expenses.
When a student completes the FAFSA, the federal government determines the amount that a student has available from their own/family’s resources to help pay for college expenses. This is called the Expected Family Contribution (EFC).
We use the EFC to determine how much financial aid students are able to receive by using the following formula:
Cost of Attendance (COA)
- Expected Family Contribution (EFC)
= Financial Need
The total amount of need based financial aid a student receives cannot exceed their Financial Need and the total amount of aid from all programs and resources cannot exceed the Cost of Attendance/Student Budget.
Siena Heights University administers student financial assistance in compliance with all applicable state and federal regulations as well as those pertaining to non-discrimination on the basis of sex, race, color, religion, age, handicap, national or ethnic origin.
To qualify for a graduate assistantship, the student must be fully admitted as a degree-seeking student in an SHU Graduate College program at the time of appointment.
Academic Scholarships: Full-Time Adrian Campus Undergraduate Students Only (College of Arts & Sciences)
Trustee Tuition Scholarship
Siena Heights University’s most selective scholarship. To be eligible, applicants must possess a minimum GPA of 3.5 or higher and partake in a campus interview. The scholarship is renewable for up to four years provided students maintain satisfactory academic progress and minimum cumulative Siena GPA of 3.2 or higher.
Presidential and Dean Scholarships
The Presidential and Dean Scholarships are for highly qualified first-time freshmen who possess a minimum GPA of 3.5 or higher. Students must also partake in a campus interview. This scholarship is renewable for up to four years provided students maintain satisfactory academic progress and a minimum cumulative Siena GPA of 3.0 or higher.
This award is for highly qualified first-time freshmen who have earned a 3.25 GPA, and are actively involved in high school and community co-curricular activities. This scholarship is renewable for up to four years provided students maintain satisfactory academic progress and a minimum cumulative Siena GPA of 2.8 or higher.
This award is for students who have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.75 from the college(s) they are transferring from. This scholarship is renewable provided students maintain satisfactory academic progress and a minimum
cumulative Siena GPA of 2.5 or higher.
Phi Theta Kappa
This award is for members of Phi Theta Kappa transferring to Siena Heights University with a minimum 3.5 GPA. Official transcripts are required. This award is renewable provided students maintain satisfactory academic progress and a minimum cumulative Siena GPA of 3.5 or higher.
International Student Scholarship
International high school senior students with a 3.0 cumulative GPA or higher. Recipients must meet all admissions requirements for SHU. Applicants must have their transcripts evaluated by an authorized credential evaluation service such as WES, AACRAO, or ECE and provide equivalency on a 4.0 GPA scale. Students who have been involved in community service projects are encouraged to apply. This scholarship is renewable for up to four years provided students maintain satisfactory academic progress and a minimum cumulative Siena GPA and be in good standing with SEVP and University requirements for International Students. ESL (English as a Second Language) students are not eligible for scholarships.
International Transfer Student Scholarship
Transfer students from two- or four-year colleges or universities with a 2.75 cumulative GPA or higher. Recipients must meet SHU’s requirements for admission. Applicants must have their transcripts evaluated by an authorized credential evaluation service such as WES, AACRAO, or ECE and provide a course-by-course equivalency on a 4.0 GPA scale. This scholarship is renewable for up to four years provided students maintain satisfactory academic progress and a minimum cumulative Siena GPA of 2.5 or higher. ESL (English as a Second Language) students are not eligible for scholarships.
The Saints compete in the National Associate of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) and offer athletic scholarships in 10 men’s and 10 women’s sports. Athletic scholarships and grants are awarded based on the recommendation of the individual sports head coach and in coordination with other gift assistance programs by the Office of Financial Aid. This award is renewable over four years provided students maintain athletic eligibility, satisfactory academic progress and continue to participate in the program.
Fine Arts Scholarships
Siena Heights offers scholarships in the following performing arts:
- Art (including art history, art education, graphic design, & studio art),
- Music (including marching band, orchestra, choir),
- Theatre (including musical theater).
Scholarships are based on student auditions or portfolio reviews. Awards are determined by the directors of the individual programs and are communicated to the Office of Financial Aid. These scholarships are renewable over four years provided students maintain satisfactory academic progress, continues participation or maintains their major for which the award was given.
Campus Ministry Scholarship
The Campus Ministry Scholars Program prepares leaders for church and society, leaders who are theologically grounded, community minded and religiously committed. Scholarship recipients will be in a position to work with the student body in building the campus faith community. Graduates of this program will be well-prepared for service and leadership at their own parish or church. Campus Ministry Scholarship awards are determined by the Campus Ministry Department and communicated to the Office of Financial Aid. This award is renewable provided students continue their involvement in the Campus Ministry program and maintains satisfactory academic progress.
Through generous gifts from family, friends and alumni of Siena Heights University, various scholarship programs have been established. The awarding Individual contributors fund many academic scholarships provided by Siena Heights University. If a specific donor provides your scholarship, you will be notified during the year and given an opportunity to meet the donor.
Note: Academic scholarships and grants provided by the University are renewable annually provided the recipient is continuously enrolled as a full-time student on the CAS campus and maintains the minimum GPA required for each particular scholarship.
Grants: Full-Time Undergraduate Students (College of Arts and Sciences)
These grants may be awarded to students who demonstrate financial need. Grants are awarded for one academic year. Renewal is contingent upon current funding levels and the student’s annual submission of the FAFSA, evidence of need, maintaining satisfactory progress and remaining in attendance for the full period for which the grant is awarded.
Students who file the FAFSA will be considered for this non-need based award. This award is renewable for up to four years. Renewal is contingent upon current funding levels, the student’s annual submission of the FAFSA and maintaining satisfactory progress.
High school seniors or transfer students who are the children, grandchildren, or sibling of a current Siena Heights student or Siena Heights alumnus will be considered for this award. This award is renewable provided the student is making satisfactory academic progress.
Federal Aid Programs
Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (FSEOG) Program
The FSEOG may be awarded to full-time undergraduates whose FAFSA form indicates exceptional financial need. Awards are based on funds available at the time of application. Award amounts are limited and vary.
Federal College Work Study
The federal government supports employment for financially needy students.
Awards are based on funds available at the time of application. This program encourages community service work and work related to each student’s course of study, where applicable. Students are responsible for securing employment and perform job duties according to the position description. The number of hours a student may work each week is determined by the amount of the work study award. Assigned work hours may not conflict with class attendance or scheduled examinations. Failure to perform assigned duties satisfactorily may result in job termination. Work study earnings can be applied to session charges or paid directly to students according to the Student Pay Schedule established by Human Resources.
Full and Part-time Students – Undergraduate Students (College of Arts & Sciences and College for Professional Studies)
Adrian Dominican Tuition Grant
The Adrian Dominican Tuition Grant is a recognition award for nieces/nephews or grandnieces/nephews of current members of the Adrian Dominican Congregation. Verification of relationship by the aunt is expected. A completed Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is required for all tuition remission applicants. The FAFSA must be filed by June 30 of each year to ensure summer, fall, and winter sessions tuition remission benefits. Failure to meet this filing deadline will result in loss of eligibility of tuition remission for all three sessions. Eligible students may be awarded grants which could range between $250 and $1,000 per year, depending on the number of courses for which the student will enroll.
Federal Pell Grants
Federal Pell Grants are awarded to undergraduate students who have exceptional financial need and do not have a prior Bachelor’s degree. Students apply using the FAFSA and can receive no more than 12 sessions or the equivalent (roughly six years). The amount of this grant is determined by the Federal Government and can change yearly based on funding levels and calculated financial need from the FAFSA.
Michigan Tuition Grant and Competitive Scholarships
Michigan residency of one year is required for all state aid programs. Assistance from each program is renewable for up to 10 sessions. The Tuition Grant and Scholarship Programs are need-based programs, and a student may not receive assistance from both sources during the same session. Both programs require filing the FAFSA, having the results sent to the state of Michigan and completing the state residency questions on the FAFSA. Students must also list Siena Heights as the first school choice on the FAFSA in order for the State of Michigan to guarantee payment.
Students may receive educational financial assistance from a variety of sources. Federal regulations requires that if a student receives the award because of postsecondary enrollment (for example, a scholarship from a local social club that requires a student to be attending a postsecondary school), it counts as estimated financial assistance when determining a student’s overall financial aid eligibility. Estimated financial assistance includes any educational benefits paid because of enrollment in postsecondary education. This includes but may not be limited to Federal grants and loans, institutional grants and scholarships, State financial aid programs, outside scholarships, employer reimbursement of employee’s tuition, waivers of tuition, federal work study funds, assistantships, AmeriCorps funds (except when packaging Direct Subsidized loans) and private student loans.
An outside scholarship is any scholarship not awarded by the government or the school, such as a scholarship provided by a private sector company, high school or community foundation. Outside scholarships are considered resources, meaning that they may reduce a student’s financial aid package dollar for dollar. Schools often do not have a choice in the matter. Federal rules concerning “overaward situations” require the school to reduce the financial aid package when the sum of financial aid from all sources exceeds the school’s cost of education. Students are required to report any outside scholarships to the school’s financial aid office. If a student fails to report an outside scholarship, they may be required to repay the school or the government all or part of their need-based financial aid package.
Employer Payments or Reimbursements
Employer tuition assistance includes a variety of employer-sponsored programs to help employees and their dependents pay for college. In many cases the funds received from these programs may be excluded from income and hence tax-free. Employer reimbursements or payments are considered resources, meaning that they may reduce a student’s financial aid package dollar for dollar. Schools often do not have a choice in the matter. Federal rules concerning “overaward situations” require the school to reduce the financial aid package when the sum of financial aid from all sources exceeds the school’s cost of education.
Students are required to report any outside employer reimbursement or payments to the school’s financial aid office. If a student fails to report an outside scholarship, they may be required to repay the school or the government all or part of their need-based financial aid package.
The State Approving Agency (SAA) has imposed the following requirements of Siena Heights University in order for students to receive veterans’ benefits.
Failing Grade and Last Date of Attendance: A student receiving veteran’s benefits who receives one or more failing or non-punitive grades (a non-punitive grade is an “I” or a “No Credit”) must inform the Siena Heights University Veterans Certification Officer in writing of the last date of attendance in that class or classes. Veterans Certification is prepared in the Office of the Registrar.
Satisfactory Grade (cumulative GPA and probation: All graduate students receiving veterans’ benefits must maintain a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. Failure to maintain a 3.0 GPA will result in the student being placed on probation or being suspended. A student who is placed on probation may not continue on probation more than one session in order to raise the cumulative GPA to that required for graduation and come off probation. If the student fails to come off probation, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (USDVA) is notified in writing.
Student Loan Programs
All loans are OPTIONAL and may be DECLINED. Loan funds are disbursed directly to the University in at least two payments during the loan period. The Financial Aid Office notifies students when loan funds are received.
Federal Subsidized Stafford Loan
Undergraduate students who demonstrate financial need (based on their FAFSA results) may be eligible for a Federal Direct Subsidized Loan. Interest is paid by the federal government during eligible in-school, grace and deferment periods. The subsidized loan does NOT accrue interest while the student is enrolled at least half-time. There is a 6-month grace period after graduation or dropping below half-time before repayment is required. The repayment period can be as long as 10 years. The Financial Aid Office will notify students, who are eligible to borrow a Subsidized Stafford Loan, of their maximum eligibility. Maximum loan amounts are based on grade level and financial need.
Federal Unsubsidized Stafford Loan
The unsubsidized loan is NOT based on Financial need. The student is responsible for paying the interest, which begins accruing as soon as the loan is disbursed. There is a 6-month grace period after graduation or dropping below half-time before repayment is required. The repayment period can be as long as 10 years. The unsubsidized loan DOES accrue interest while the student is in school. Students can make interest payments or let the interest capitalize. The Financial Aid Office will notify students, who are eligible to borrow an Unsubsidized Stafford Loan, of their maximum eligibility. Maximum loan amounts are based on grade level, dependency status and financial need.
Federal Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS)
The Federal PLUS program allows parents to borrow up to the cost of attendance minus estimated financial aid for the academic year for each dependent student enrolled at least half time. The borrower has the option of beginning repayment on the PLUS loan either 60 days after the loan is fully disbursed or wait until six months after the dependent student on whose behalf the parent borrowed ceases to be enrolled on at least a half-time basis. The University determines maximum eligibility. The parent applicant will need to complete a Parent PLUS application and PLUS direct loan master promissory note yearly at StudentLoans.gov.
Loan Entrance/Exit Interviews
First time Federal Direct Student Loan borrowers at Siena Heights must complete the online Loan Entrance Counseling and Quiz before loan funds can be disbursed. Completion of the Loan Entrance Counseling and Quiz is a federal requirement that discusses your rights and responsibilities as a Federal Direct Student Loan borrower. Please complete the online entrance counseling at StudentLoans.gov. We encourage you to print the confirmation page for your records. Once you have completed the online entrance counseling and quiz, we will receive an automated confirmation.
If you withdraw from Siena Heights prior to the completion of your program it is important that you contact the following offices: Financial Aid, Registrar, and your program advisor. This is to ensure that the school can provide you with the appropriate exit counseling.
Exit Counseling occurs during a student’s expected year of graduation, at the time a student leaves school, or drops below half time enrollment status. Each borrower is given a summary of his/her total loan debt and detailed information regarding loan repayment. Exit Counseling can be completed by logging onto the StudentLoans.gov website.
Student Loan Deferment Processing
Siena Heights University submits information on all attending students to the National Student Clearinghouse (NSC). This information is submitted by Siena Heights to the NSC four (4) times for Fall and Winter sessions, and three (3) times for Summer session. All lending agencies pull down this information from the NSC, as needed, to service their lenders. Siena Heights does not supply this information directly to lending agencies. The lending agencies use this information to determine whether or not a student should begin repayment of their loan.
Students may be informed by their lender that they are going into repayment of their loan(s) for any of the following reasons:
- They have used up their grace period.
- They are no longer enrolled at an institution of higher education.
- Their name missed the first submission of the session because they registered after the date of the first submission by Siena Heights to the NSC.
If any of the above circumstances happens, the student should call their lender to either make arrangements for payment, or to ask for a deferment form. Many lending agencies have this form on their web site. The student should complete the information on the form that is required by the lender and forward it to the Registrar’s Office for completion. The form must have a fax number, e-mail address, or mailing address to return the form to the lender. The Registrar’s Office will send this deferment to the lender.
Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy - All Colleges
The Higher Education Act of 1976, as amended, requires Siena Heights University to develop and apply a consistent and reasonable standard of academic progress for all students who receive federal financial aid in order for those students to continue to receive such assistance. This standard must contain all elements specified in the regulations and must be at least as strict as the academic standards of the University used for all students.
The established guidelines (based on federal regulations) for evaluating a student’s progress take into consideration cumulative Siena Heights grade point average and the number of credit hours attempted and completed.
The Financial Aid Office at Siena Heights University reviews student’s satisfactory academic progress status at the end of each session, to include summer, fall, and winter.
In order to maintain satisfactory academic progress (to be in good standing academically) a student must do two things:
- Qualitative Measure – Maintain a 2.0 cumulative GPA (undergraduate students), or a 3.0 cumulative GPA (graduate students); and
- Quantitative Measure – Successfully complete (i.e., pass) 2/3 of the credit hours attempted.
Maximum Timeframe (150% Rule)
Students are not permitted to receive federal student aid for a period no longer than 150 percent of the published length of the program.
Grade point averages are calculated by dividing total quality points by quality hours. Hours for courses for which grades of CR, NC, or W are excluded from the hours attempted to obtain quality hours.
Hours successfully completed includes all credit hours attached to course grades of A, B, C, D, and CR. Hours attempted includes those successfully completed as well as those attached to courses in which grades of E, I, IP, W, NC, WF, and WE were assigned.
Failure to achieve satisfactory academic progress will result in warning, probation, or suspension and will affect eligibility for financial aid.
Satisfactory Academic Progress Warning
If it is determined that a student has not met the Satisfactory Academic Progress requirements, students will be placed on a financial aid warning and be allowed one additional session with which to meet SAP requirements in order to remain eligible for financial aid.
Satisfactory Academic Progress Suspension
Students who do not meet satisfactory academic progress requirements at the end of the financial aid warning period will be placed on a financial aid suspension and will not be eligible for financial aid without appealing.
Satisfactory Academic Progress Academic Plan & Appeal Procedure
Any student denied financial aid due to the policy may appeal to the Office of Financial Aid. An appeal application and instructions will be included with the SAP notification letter from the Office of Financial Aid. Students wishing to appeal will be required to submit a formal letter explaining why he or she is not currently making Satisfactory Academic Progress. The letter should also include the students plan to sufficiently improve their academic status. Students will also be required to meet with their academic advisor to review their academic plan and sign off on the student’s appeal application. Appeal applications should be submitted to the Office of Financial Aid prior to the start of term and must be submitted prior to the end of the second week of the term for which they are applying. After an application for appeal is received, the student will be notified in writing of the results of the Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeal. Reinstatement of aid for a subsequent period will be determined on an individual basis.
Students who do not meet the terms of satisfactory academic progress, and who either elect not to file an appeal, or who failed to meet the terms of their financial aid academic plan will be required to meet the Satisfactory Academic Progress standards before regaining eligibility for financial aid.
Satisfactory Academic Progress Probation
Students will be assigned this status if they fail to meet satisfactory academic progress but successfully appeal. Students will be permitted to receive financial aid for one additional term with continued eligibility to be reviewed and determined at the term’s end. Students on SAP financial aid probation are monitored for improvements and are required to adhere to their terms and conditions of probation.
Incompletes, Withdrawals, Failures and Repetitions
Classes graded with failure (“E”), “incomplete”, “no credit”, or “withdraw” will be evaluated as courses attempted, although not successfully completed. Repeated courses will count toward academic progress.
Transfer Credit, Siena Heights Credit Hours and Academic Program
When determining if a student is within the requirements of Siena Height’s Satisfactory Academic Progress policy, the Financial Aid Office will consider credit hours that are accepted by the Registrar’s Office as transfer credit or that were taken at Siena Heights, and that are applicable to the student’s academic program. The number of transfer credit hours accepted will be used to calculate a student’s remaining eligibility according to the maximum timeframe standard (150% rule) and will be included in the quantitative calculation which includes number of credits attempted and completed. Transfer credit grades are not considered in a student’s GPA. The GPA used for Satisfactory Academic Progress policy only considers classes taken at Siena.