Students who are full-time (12 credit hours or more) on the official census date (14th calendar day beginning with the first day of classes) who drop or withdraw to a part-time status (less than 12 credit hours) will lose the HOPE scholarship unless there are documented medical or personal reasons.
An institution may allow a change from full-time to part-time status within the same term only when there are documented medical or personal reasons. Such medical or personal reasons shall include, but not limited to, illness of the student, illness or death of an immediate family member, extreme financial hardship of the student or student's immediate family, or other extraordinary circumstances beyond the student's control where continued full-time attendance by the student creates a substantial hardship.
A change of status could be an increase or decrease in scheduled hours to attend. A student must first complete an appeal form and wait for approval before changing status. If approved, the amount of any financial award being received may be adjusted based on the revised schedule hours for the term. In the event a change of status appeal is denied, the student has a right to appeal to TSAC.
The Institutional Review Panel (IRP) is established for the purpose of reviewing appeals for a student's request to change their enrollment status and leave of absence as it relates to their continued eligibility for the HOPE Scholarship.
The IRP will be designated by the institution administrator and may be composed, but not limited to, the following: two faculty members, one support staff, one student, and one administrator. An alternate will be designated for any IRP member who is personally involved in a particular case or is otherwise unable to attend.
Students must complete the HOPE scholarship appeal form and provide supporting documentation. Students must receive approval of the appeal before making a change to their enrollment status.
Appeals of IRP's Decision
A student seeking an appeal of a decision rendered by the IRP shall request in writing an appeal outlining the basis for the appeal with the Tennessee Student Assistance Corporation within fourteen calendar days from the date the decision was delivered to the student.
Tennessee Student Assistance Corporation
TELS Award Appeals Panel
404 James Robertson Parkway, Suite 1950
Nashville, Tennessee 37243.