Are you planning on taking classes during the summer session? Are you wondering if your financial aid will pay for summer classes, or if you will have to pay out of pocket? Since summer classes are not required for all programs at Chattanooga State, it can sometimes be tricky to figure out if you will have enough financial aid. The same rules usually apply for any financial aid for which you are eligible during the summer.
If you are already enrolled in a clock hour program with the Technical College of Applied Technology (TCAT) at Chattanooga, or are starting for the first time in May, then you have probably already been awarded your financial aid for the part of your program that happens during the summer months. You have to meet all eligibility requirements, and all verification requirements must have been completed. If you are graduating from high school in May (or graduated in December), and your TCAT program starts this summer, this would be the only time you could receive TN Promise before the fall semester following graduation (as long as you have met all eligibility requirements and all verification requirements are complete).
*NOTE: if you choose to take community college (credit hour) courses in addition to your TCAT classes, you will have to pay out of pocket for those courses – your financial aid will only pay for your clock hour classes.*
If you have questions, contact TCAT Student Services at (423) 697-4433 or TCATSS@chattanoogastate.edu
Classes at Other Schools
If you find classes that you want to take at other schools to use for credit at Chattanooga State, then you may have financial aid available, depending on your eligibility. You will probably have to apply to the other school as a transient student, meaning we are your “home school,” and the other school is your “host school.” If you have financial aid available, you will need to complete a Consortium Agreement with our office. In most cases, you will have to pay tuition and fees up front at the host school, then be reimbursed by your available financial aid. Contact your Success Coach, stop by the Enrollment Services Center (main campus), or visit the Student Services office at one of the satellite campuses if you have questions.
Awarding Aid for Summer Classes
Once you register for summer classes, our automated processing and reports will pick up your information and award you any aid for which you are eligible for the full summer term. Remember, too, that most financial aid will only pay for classes that are required for graduation in your current program of study – so make sure to meet with an Academic Advisor or Completion Specialist before registering for classes. If you have any free electives in your program of study, then you can take classes that you want, rather than those required for your major, or classes that count towards different program – either at Chattanooga State or another school.
Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)
For everyone enrolled in the spring 2019 semester for credit or TCAT, we will evaluate SAP after grades post in May. This could change your eligibility for financial aid for the summer, even if you have already been awarded. If you are no longer eligible for aid at the end of the spring 2019 period for not meeting SAP guidelines, you have the option of completing a SAP appeal in TigerWeb. There is not a lot of time between when grades post in May and summer classes start, so you should be prepared to pay your tuition and fees up front to keep your summer classes from being dropped for non-payment. If your SAP appeal is reviewed and approved, then you could be reimbursed by any financial aid for which you are eligible. Appeals can take 2-3 weeks to be reviewed from the time that the completed appeal and all supporting documentation is received in the Office of Financial Aid.
Payment of Aid in the Summer
Once you are awarded summer aid and register for classes, aid will show as authorized (pending) based on the eligible credit hours in which you are registered. If you are going to have excess aid and accepted the Title IV Fee Authorization, then you may see a notification in Self-Service Banner that you can charge books and supplies at the campus bookstore during certain dates. After the census date (14th day) of the full summer term, aid will show as paid depending on the classes you have attended. Since there are summer sessions that start after the census date (May 19th), you may not see your pending aid anymore– even if you have been awarded and are still eligible. Then, your aid will not pay for all of your eligible hours until you actually go to all of your classes. Make note of your pending aid leading up to the census date, so you will know how much aid you should expect to get over the entire summer semester.
Types of Summer Aid
Pell Grant: if you have not used 100% of your Pell Grant award for the year, then you may have grant funds left for summer, even if you only need to take 1 class. Since the Pell Grant pro-rates based on your actual enrollment, it just depends on your EFC from the FAFSA and your Pell Grant award for the year. If you have already used 100% of your Pell Grant for the year, then you might be able to receive an additional 50% for the summer if you enroll at least half-time, in at least 6 eligible credit hours. Remember that any Pell Grant you use in the summer months counts towards your lifetime Pell Grant eligibility.
Direct Loans: if you would like to request additional loan funds, previously declined all or part of your loans, or would like to request all of your loan funds for the summer, then you can complete a Loan Modification in TigerWeb. Remember that there are annual and lifetime limits for your loans, so you won’t be able to receive any more loan funds for the aid year if you have already borrowed your limit. If it is the 1st time you are borrowing federal student loans, then you will have to complete Entrance Counseling and a Master Promissory Note (MPN) at studentloans.gov, and there will be a 30-day delay of your 1st loan disbursement from the start of the term. If your loan is only for the summer semester, then your loan will pay to your account in 2 disbursements, approximately 30 days apart. You have to enroll in and attend at least half-time, or at least 6 eligible credit hours, to receive loans. And federal loans that you use in the summer are added to your overall loan balance to be repaid once you leave school.
TELS Scholarships (HOPE, Aspire, etc.): summer is not a required semester in order to maintain eligibility for TN Lottery scholarships, and you can request, in writing, not to use your lottery scholarship funds in the summer. In order to receive a TELS scholarship in the summer, you must enroll at least half-time. If you drop below half-time during the summer, though, you can permanently lose eligibility going forward.
TN Promise: you will have to have completed your community service hours by the deadline in order to use the TN Promise scholarship in the summer, and you still have to enroll full-time (over the entire summer semester). If you don’t have a 2.0 GPA at the end of spring, you can potentially take classes in the summer to increase your GPA and keep from losing the TN Promise scholarship. Also, if you are still eligible for TN Promise and lose eligibility for other aid at the end of spring due to SAP, it’s possible that TN promise could pay for your classes. If you drop below full-time enrollment during the summer, you could permanently lose eligibility going forward.
TN Reconnect: for the summer you still have to enroll at least half-time (over the entire summer). If you don’t have a 2.0 GPA at the end of spring, you can potentially take classes in the summer to increase your GPA and keep from losing the TN Reconnect Grant. If you are still eligible for TN Reconnect and lose eligibility for other aid at the end of spring due to SAP, it’s possible that TN Reconnect could pay for your classes. If you drop below half-time during the summer, you could permanently lose eligibility going forward.
Funds are typically not available in the summer for institutional scholarships and TN Student Assistance Award (except TCAT). Payment plans are also not available during the summer months, so you will have to pay tuition and fees out of pocket if financial aid is not available. Contact your Success Coach, stop by the Enrollment Services Center (main campus), or visit the Student Services office at one of the satellite campuses if you have questions.