FINANCIAL SUPPORT FOR GRADUATE STUDENTS
There are several types of financial support for graduate students regularly administered through the Graduate School. From time to time, other special awards may become available. The Office of Student Financial Aid administers additional financial aid programs that are also addressed in this section. Students receiving any type of financial assistance are expected to satisfy the requirements of the Graduate School's retention policy (see Retention Policy).
Satisfactory academic progress requirements for graduate students specifically related to Title IV federal programs, state, and most institutional programs are described later in this section entitled "Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy." Reference books and other information on financial support for graduate study, such as scholarships, fellowships, and grants from private and governmental funding sources, are available in Graduate Records in the Service Center, Rendleman Hall, room 1309. Other reference books can be found in Lovejoy Library at the reserve desk.
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville is an equal opportunity employer and will not discriminate against any person on the basis of race, religion, national origin, or sex in violation of Title VII.
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville prohibits discrimination against employees, applicants for employment and students on the basis of age, color, disability, marital status, national origin, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, or veteran’s status.
Information on graduate assistantships, Competitive Graduate Awards, Graduate Scholar Award, and other financial assistance can be obtained from the Graduate School, Rendleman Hall, room 2202, Campus Box 1046, telephone (618) 650-3010. More detailed information on other forms of financial assistance can be obtained from the Office of Student Financial Aid (OSFA), Rendleman Hall, room 2308, Campus Box 1060, telephone (618) 650-3880 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
FINANCIAL AID SATISFACTORY ACADEMIC PROGRESS POLICY
To remain eligible for student financial assistance under federal, state, and institutional programs, students must maintain satisfactory progress toward degree completion. For the purpose of this policy, financial aid at the graduate level is defined as any of the Title IV Federal programs and institutional programs, Federal Work Study, Regular Student Employment, Federal Perkins Loans, Federal Direct Loans, SIUE Foundation Loans and Grants, and SIUE tuition waivers or scholarships, except those given under the terms of employment, a graduate assistantship, or special graduate award.
A graduate student's financial aid eligibility will be terminated when total semester hours in a master's degree program exceeds 150% of the published program length.
At the end of each academic term, the Office of Student Financial Aid will review the continued eligibility of students receiving financial aid. Students not meeting the requirements of this policy will be notified in writing of the termination of financial assistance. Graduate students are also expected to comply with Graduate School policy regarding academic standards for continued enrollment in programs leading to graduate degrees.
A student may appeal this financial aid termination by completing a Financial Aid Appeal form with supporting documentation and submitting the appeal to the Office of Student Financial Aid.
COMPETITIVE GRADUATE AWARDS (CGA)
Competitive Graduate Awards are administered through The Graduate School, Rendleman Hall, room 2202. To be considered for an award, applications and all supporting materials must be received in The Graduate School no later than 4:30 p.m. on January 15 or the closest business date if this date falls on a weekend. (Check the website for any date changes). Application packets are available on The Graduate School website at www.siue.edu/graduatestudents/fellowshipsandgrants/index.shtml or by request from The Graduate School, Campus Box 1046, Edwardsville, IL 62026-1046 or 618/650-3010. Awards are made for the following academic year fall and spring semesters.
To be eligible for consideration, an applicant must be admitted to a graduate degree program at SIUE and must not have begun graduate study before the summer term preceding the fall semester for which the award is granted. Students approved for admission in a combined baccalaureate/master's five-year program are also eligible to compete for an award provided the admission term for which they are approved is no earlier than the summer term preceding the academic year for which the award is offered.
Applications for Competitive Graduate Awards are evaluated on an academic basis; thus, applicants are expected to have a minimum 3.3 (A=4.0) grade point average in their undergraduate course work. Applicants who have completed their master's degree are not eligible for this award.
Awards include a stipend of $8,370 for the academic year, as well as waiver of tuition. Recipients are expected to enroll in a minimum of 9 hours of graduate credit for each semester and maintain the required minimum grade point average for retention in the student's graduate program. The awards are for a maximum of two consecutive semesters, beginning with the fall term, and are nonrenewable. Holders of these awards shall not accept concurrent appointments in the University; employment outside the University is strongly discouraged. Graduate School policy allows holders of Competitive Graduate Awards full use of the tuition waiver for any awardee who is enrolled for at least one-half of the semester.
DIVERSIFYING FACULTY IN ILLINOIS (DFI)
The Diversifying Higher Education Faculty in Illinois (DFI) program administered through the Illinois Board of Higher Education, provides awards of up to $14,000 for a full-time graduate student. The Award is renewable for one year for master’s students and up to three years for doctoral students, contingent upon satisfactory academic progress. An applicant must be an Illinois resident, from an underrepresented group (African American/Black, Hispanic American, Asian American, Native American or Alaskan Native), above average academic ability, and must demonstrate financial need to be considered for this award. An award recipient must agree to actively seek and accept when offered a teaching or non-teaching full-time appointment at an Illinois post-secondary educational institution or at a state office, equal to the number of years for which he or she receives the DFI fellowship. The DFI website is http://www.ibhe.org. Applications are due to Dr. Venessa A. Brown, Assistant Provost for Faculty Development and Diversity, in early February and awards are announced in late March for the following academic year. Applications and guidelines are available at http://www.ibhe.org.
Graduate assistantships at the masters and specialist levels are available in a number of academic, service, and research units. Students seeking assistantships should apply directly to the prospective unit.
Assistantships carry a minimum stipend of $896 per month plus waiver of tuition. They have a work requirement relative to the percentage of the appointment. Appointments will not be made for less than 25 percent or more than 50 percent time. Graduate assistants with a 50 percent appointment may work a maximum of 20 clock hours per week. They may not hold any other paid positions with the University. Students with an appointment of less than 50 percent may hold a concurrent position elsewhere in the University as a graduate assistant or student worker, as long as the total hours worked do not exceed 20 hours per week at any time during the assistantship period. Teaching assistants’ hours include preparation and grading, as well as time spent in the classroom.
Any student holding an appointment, who resigns that appointment prior to the completion of the academic term, will forfeit the tuition waiver and be liable for full payment of tuition, and will not be eligible for appointment in another unit at the university until the beginning of a new term. Exceptions to this condition may be granted upon recommendation from the original hiring unit and approval by the Dean of Graduate Studies and Research.
College Work Study funds are available to support graduate students and can be used to help fund graduate assistantships, providing up to 70 percent of an assistant's salary. Students seeking assistantships are encouraged to file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) available from the Office of Student Financial Aid in order to be considered for College Work Study eligibility.
All assistantships are intended to be of direct educational benefit to appointees. In order to be approved by the Graduate Dean, an assistantship appointment should relate to the student's academic objective and be supervised by qualified personnel. Students who seek assistantships in units other than the one in which the student is pursuing a degree must have approval from the Graduate Program Director of the degree program and from the supervisor of the employing unit. Justification for the relationship between the student's assistantship responsibilities and the degree program must also be provided.
Grievances that arise from the conditions of the assistantship appointment are resolved in accordance with the policy on "Graduate Assistant Appointment (Non-Academic) Grievance Procedure." A full description of obligations and benefits is contained in the Graduate Assistant Handbook, available upon request from the Graduate School.
Students must be admitted to a graduate degree program before the unconditional award of an assistantship is made.
Unclassified students are not eligible for appointments. Undergraduate students are not allowed to hold assistantship appointments. An exception may be granted to undergraduates in an approved combined baccalaureate/master's five-year program when they are within 12 semester hours and not more than one academic term from receiving a baccalaureate degree.
International students awarded teaching assistantships must show fluency and command of the English language. Students with low grade point averages or an excessive number of incomplete or deferred grades will not be appointed or re-appointed by the Graduate Dean. Assistantships already awarded will be in jeopardy when an appointee's average in graduate work falls below the required minimum for retention in the student's academic program.
Graduate assistants can carry no more than 12 hours and must carry at least 6 hours of graduate credit per academic term (maximum of 6 and minimum of 3 during a summer session) unless specifically authorized to do so by the Graduate Dean. Courses taken for audit do not count toward the minimum hours but must be authorized if they are in excess of the maximum hours. Requests for exceptions to these restrictions must be made on the "Overload/Underload Petition for Graduate Assistants and Awardees," available from the Graduate School. Graduate School policy allows holders of graduate assistantships full use of the tuition waiver for any awardee who remains enrolled and under contract until the completion of the semester or academic term. To avoid liability for tuition for the term in which withdrawal occurs, a student who holds an assistantship must officially withdraw from classes during the first two weeks of the semester or academic term.
GRADUATE SCHOLAR AWARD
Students from under-represented groups may be eligible to apply for assistance through the Graduate Scholar Award program. The program provides a tuition waiver for qualified students. Students must be nominated for the award by their academic unit. To find more information click here
GRANTS, OTHER ILLINOIS
Grants may also be available to the spouse and children of Illinois police or fire personnel killed in the line of duty and to the spouse and children of State of Illinois Department of Corrections officers killed or permanently disabled in the line of duty. Recipients need not be Illinois residents at the time of enrollment but must be enrolled in at least 6 semester hours of study. The awards cover tuition and mandatory fees and are available for up to 8 semesters. See www.collegeillinois.org for more information.
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville participates in the William D. Ford Direct Loan program. Guaranteed federal student loans, subsidized and unsubsidized, are available to graduate students to assist with educational costs. Students must complete and submit a FAFSA application to be eligible for student loans. To apply for a loan after the FAFSA is received by SIUE, students must accept the loan(s) on their award letter on CougarNet. After accepting the loan(s) on CourgarNet, students must complete a master promissory note (mpn) at www.studentloans.gov. If the student has never received student loans in the past, the student must also complete entrance loan counseling for graduate students at the same website (www.studentloans.gov). Loan money is paid directly to the University which administers the funds. Applicants interested in student loans will be considered first for subsidized loans, which are based on financial need, then unsubsidized loans, which are not need-based.
Repayment of subsidized loans is deferred until six months after a student graduates, leaves school, or drops below half time, at which time interest begins to accrue on the loan. Repayment of unsubsidized loans is deferred until six months after a student graduates, leaves school, or drops below half time; however, interest on this loan begins accruing as soon as the loan funds are disbursed to the student.
Graduate students may borrow up to $20,500 annually, with no more than $8,500 of this in subsidized loan funds. Ordinarily, students are limited to borrowing their annual maximum across three terms (fall, spring, and summer).
Students may also apply for a Grad PLUS student loan if the subsidized and unsubsidized loan amounts are not enough to cover their educational expenses. These loans are not guaranteed and will require a check of the student’s credit history. The amount a student may borrow in an academic year is determined by their Cost of Attendance/Budget minus any other financial aid awarded.
A third option for loans is available to students in the form of Alternative Loans. These loans are obtained through private student loan lenders. These loans are not guaranteed and will require the lender to conduct a check of the student’s credit history. Interest rates for these loans vary by lender. A list of suggestions for lenders is available on the Office of Student Financial Aid website, www.siue.edu/financialaid. Direct Loans does not offer loans in this program. The amount a student may borrow in an academic year is determined by their Cost of Attendance/Budget minus any other financial aid awarded.
LOANS, SHORT TERM
Emergency Short-Term Loans are available through the Office of Student Financial Aid (OSFA) for emergency situations only and are not for payment of tuition and fees. Small loans (up to $300) are made for 30 days.
SCHOLARSHIPS AND FELLOWSHIPS, STATE OF ILLINOIS
Scholarships assist students with educational expenses and do not have to be repaid. Illinois residents may be eligible for scholarships provided by state dollars. The following programs are administered by the Illinois Student Assistance Commission (ISAC). Applications and information on these programs are available from ISAC at 800-899-4722 or www.collegeillinois.org.
Illinois General Assembly Scholarships These scholarships are awarded by General Assembly members to residents of their legislative districts. Awards are granted for varying lengths of time. Students should contact their General Assembly Representative directly for complete information and check the website www.isbe.state.il.us/gov_relations/html/scholarships.htm.
Illinois Future Teacher Corps (IFTC)
The IFTC scholarships are awarded to academically talented students who plan to pursue careers as preschool, elementary or secondary school teachers in the State of Illinois. Priority is given to students with financial need, minority students and those planning to teach in a teacher shortage discipline and/or a hard-to-staff school. Based on the teaching commitment made, awards may be up to $5,000 or $10,000 per year for payment of tuition, fees, room and board charges. Priority consideration is given to renewal applications in date received order, until funds are exhausted. Applicants also must apply for federal student financial aid (FAFSA) to determine their expected family contribution, which is part of the selection criteria for the scholarship. Recipients must enroll at least half time as juniors or above and must fulfill the teaching commitment or repay funds received plus interest. Contact ISAC for more information or www.collegeillinois.org.
Minority Teachers of Illinois Scholarship (MTI)
The Minority Teachers Scholarship Program provides scholarships of up to $5,000 per year to assist individuals of African American, Hispanic American, Asian American, or Native American origin who plan to become teachers at the preschool, elementary, or high school level. Students receiving this scholarship must fulfill a teaching commitment by teaching full time one year for each year of assistance received. The teaching agreement must be fulfilled at a school in which no less than 30 percent of those enrolled are minority students. If the teaching commitment is not fulfilled, the scholarship converts to a loan. The deadline to apply for these scholarships is May 1st. Contact ISAC for more information or www.collegeillinois.org.
Illinois National Guard Program (ING) The ING program is administered by the Illinois Student Assistance Commission (ISAC) and provides for tuition, application, activity and graduation fees for graduate study for current enlisted members who have served at least one year in the Illinois National Guard as an enlisted person or company grade officer up to the rank of captain. Awards are available for a maximum of 8 semesters, and no minimum enrollment is required and non-credit courses are eligible for the ING Grant. Candidates should apply to ISAC by October 1 of the academic year for which assistance is being requested. Contact ISAC for more information or www.collegeillinois.org.
The Illinois Veterans' Grant (IVG) The Illinois Veterans' grant covers tuition, mandatory fees, application, and graduation fee for qualifying veterans and may be used concurrently with the GI Bill benefits. It is available to students who served one-year full-time active duty or were assigned to any length of active service in the Persian Gulf or Somalia in the U.S. Armed Forces and who meet Illinois residency requirements. Veterans must have been residents of Illinois for six months at the time of entering the U.S. Armed Forces. Veterans must have returned to Illinois within six months of separation from such service. Residents of Illinois who are currently members of the U.S. Armed Forces are entitled to receive the grant if they have served at least one year and otherwise meet the eligibility and residency requirements if discharged from the service. Contact ISAC for more information or www.collegeillinois.org.
Part-time student employment is available at SIUE under both the regular student employment program and the Federal Work Study program. SIUE also assists students in finding off-campus employment through the Job Locator and Development Program. For more information see www.siue.edu/studentemployment.
SIUE offers a broad range of part-time student work opportunities in almost every phase of University operations and service. Once officially enrolled, students can search for part-time positions via the Student Job Finder on the Internet at www.siue.edu/studentemployment. Students usually begin working at minimum wage and receive wage increases as their total accumulated work hours increase. Student employment information, including a schedule of key dates, is also at this website. Students can contact the student employment unit of Student Financial Aid by calling (618) 650-2563 or write to Student Employment, Campus Box 1030.
The Federal Work Study Program is designed to assist students with financial need in securing employment and helping to defray costs. Students who qualify are awarded federal funds that pay some of their wages, and the unit in which they work pays the remainder. Federal Work Study eligibility is awarded as part of the financial aid package; students must also indicate on their FAFSA they are interested in Work Study.
The Job Locator and Development Program assists students in finding part-time jobs with employers in the communities surrounding SIUE. Designed to place SIUE students in part-time positions that are related to their career and academic interests, the Job Locator and Development Program provides financial assistance and job experience to students. Any enrolled student may participate in the Job Locator and Development Program. Off-campus employment opportunities are also posted in Student Job Finder on the web.
STUDENT FINANCIAL AID, OFFICE OF
Eligibility for most federal and state student financial aid programs administered by the Office of Student Financial Aid (OSFA) requires that a graduate student be a U.S. citizen or eligible noncitizen; be admitted to a graduate degree program in classified status; be enrolled for at least 5 semester hours each term; maintain satisfactory academic progress; owe no refund on federal grants and have no current default on federal student loans. In addition, male students between the ages of 18 and 25 must be registered for the draft if not currently serving in the Armed Forces. All financial aid based on federal funding is subject to changes in federal law.
Since most international students do not meet citizenship requirements for financial aid programs administered by the Office of Student Financial Aid, these students should contact the Office of International Programs for information about financial assistance.
Graduate students applying for need-based financial aid are encouraged to submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by March 1 each year so that aid can be credited on the first fall semester bill in July. The FAFSA can be filed on-line at www.fafsa.ed.gov. Although March 1 is the preferred filing date for those who wish to enroll for fall semester, students may apply for loan assistance throughout the year.
Students who have received financial aid and who officially withdraw or otherwise separate from the University may be required to repay financial aid funds that they have received. Those who terminate attendance after the tuition and fee refund date and who have received financial aid may be considered to be in overpayment status. The Office of Student Financial Aid will make this determination taking into account the week of withdrawal, federal policies, and the amount of financial aid received in the payment period. Students who are in an overpayment status will be notified in writing of such overpayment and will be asked to repay immediately.
VETERANS' EDUCATIONAL BENEFITS
Veterans applying for benefits through the Department of Veterans' Affairs can obtain necessary forms from the Veterans' Administration or the Veterans' Certification Section located in the Office of Admissions and Records, Rendleman Hall, room 1207, telephone (618) 650-2234. Applicants must supply a copy of the Veterans' DD 214 (Report of Separation from the Armed Forces) and certified proof of any dependents. The marriage certificate and/or birth certificates of children will meet this requirement. The enrollment certification will be completed by the Veterans' Certification Section and forwarded to the Veterans' Administration Regional Office. Benefits are determined by the length of active duty in service, number of dependents, enrollment status, incentives awarded by the branch of military service in which the veteran served, and other factors. Since benefits for nontraditional courses may vary, students enrolling in courses that meet in nontraditional formats should contact the Veterans' Certification Section for specific information.
Veterans who qualify for the Illinois Veterans' Grant (IVG), which covers tuition, mandatory fees, application, and graduation fee, may use it concurrently with the Veterans' Administration benefits. The IVG is processed through the Illinois Student Assistance Commission (ISAC). Veterans are notified by ISAC of eligibility and should submit a copy of that correspondence to the Office of Student Financial Aid.
Veterans must be enrolled in a degree program and making satisfactory academic progress to remain eligible for VA benefits. No benefits are received for grades of W, WP, WR, and AU; however, graduate students may receive benefits for a deferred grade (DE) in a thesis or research course.
Veterans who qualify for educational benefits should give careful attention to the requirements for full-time graduate study as established under the guidelines and policies of the award. For complete information, contact the Veterans' Certification Section, Rendleman Hall, room 1207, (618) 650-2234. University regulations affecting VA benefits are subject to changes in federal law.