Jul 14, 2024  
2023-2024 Southern Academic Catalog 
    
2023-2024 Southern Academic Catalog

Financial Aid Information



Financial aid consists of grants, scholarships, employment opportunities, and loans to help students finance a post-secondary education. Financial aid awards may include a combination of the various types of aid available. To learn more about the various types of financial aid offered at Southern, please visit the website at www.southernwv.edu/current-students/scholarships-financial-aid/, call Southern’s Financial Aid Office at 304.896.7060, email at financialaid@southernwv.edu, or connect to SSConnect at www.southernwv.edu/ssconnect.

There is a limit to the number of credit hours for which students may receive financial aid. Students are allowed up to 150% of the required hours for graduation in their program of study.  An appeals process to the 150% limit is available for students who feel extenuating circumstances exist.

If the student “officially” or “unofficially” withdraws from all classes before 60% of the term is completed, and receives federal student aid, a Return of Title IV Funds Calculation (R2T4) is required to be performed.  Students should see the financial aid staff to review and discuss the “Return of Title IV Funds” policy before completely withdrawing from all courses.

Grants

Federal Pell Grant

The Federal Pell Grant program is a federal grant for undergraduate students pursuing their first college degree. Students must demonstrate financial need based on the information provided on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The online FAFSA application is available at www.studentaid.gov.  The amount a student is eligible for will depend on family income, cost of attendance, and enrollment status.  Those applying for Federal Pell Grant must complete a FAFSA or renewal application beginning in October of each year. Students must reapply for a Federal Pell Grant every year.

Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)

Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG) is awarded to students pursuing their first degree. The FSEOG program does not have a minimum enrollment requirement. Students must demonstrate exceptional financial need based on the information provided on the FAFSA, and be eligible for the Federal Pell Grant. Funding is limited, priority is given to those students who apply early.

Higher Education Assistance for Part-time Students (HEAPS)

Higher Education Aid for Part-time Students (HEAPS) is a need-based grant designed to assist West Virginia students enrolled on a part-time basis (3-11 credit hours). Applications for funding must be completed each academic term, and the student must complete the FAFSA to be eligible for HEAPS funding.

Please review the West Virginia Higher Education Grant website at www.cfwv.com for an in-depth review of this opportunity and current scholarship criteria.

West Virginia Higher Education Grant (WVHEG)

The West Virginia Higher Education Grant is a need-based grant for West Virginia residents who are full time students (enrolled 12 or more credit hours). WVHEG is designed to ensure West Virginia students are given an opportunity to pursue a post-secondary education.

The first step in the application process is submitting the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Applications processed before April 15 each year are given priority consideration. WVHEG recipients must complete 24 credit hours in two academic terms and maintain a 2.0 or higher grade point average to be considered for future awards.

Please review the West Virginia Higher Education Grant website at www.cfwv.com for an in-depth review of this opportunity and current scholarship criteria.

West Virginia Invests Grant

West Virginia Invests is a “last-dollar-in” financial aid program designed to cover the cost of basic tuition and mandatory fees1 for certificate or associate degree programs in specific high-demand fields, as determined by the West Virginia Department of Commerce, at a participating West Virginia public two- or four-year institution. With seventy-five percent of jobs in the current economy requiring postsecondary education or training, West Virginia Invests is designed to help more West Virginians, like you, earn the credentials you need to land a rewarding career in West Virginia.

West Virginia Invests was created by the Legislature during the 2019 regular session and helps hardworking West Virginians pay for college.

The program is managed by the West Virginia Council for Community and Technical College Education. To learn more about the West Virginia Invests Grant Program or to complete an application, visit www.wvinvests.org.

¹The maximum award amount is limited to the total cost of basic tuition and fees charged to all students, regardless of program, minus other grant or scholarship aid. Certain programs charge additional fees to cover equipment and supply costs and other necessary expenses. These fees, along with the cost of textbooks and other course materials, must be paid by the student if other forms of financial aid are not available to offset these costs.

Scholarships

Private Scholarships

Private citizens and groups have established scholarships to help students who possess specific skills to meet their educational needs. A student may obtain information concerning available scholarships from the College Financial Aid Office. An available scholarship listing may be obtained by contacting the Foundation liaison at 304.896.7406.

PROMISE Scholarship

The West Virginia PROMISE (Providing Real Opportunities for Maximizing In-state Student Excellence) Scholarship Program is a merit-based financial aid program for West Virginia residents that offers high school graduates annual awards to help cover the cost of tuition at public or independent institutions in West Virginia. All applicants must submit a completed FAFSA and PROMISE application by the March 1 deadline to be eligible.

Please review the PROMISE Scholarship website at www.cfwv.com for an in-depth review of this opportunity and current scholarship criteria.

The PROMISE Scholarship is based on the student’s achievements, not on his/her parents’ financial resources, not on the institution’s resources, nor on any other factors.

Southern Scholarships

Southern scholarships are presented annually to graduating seniors from each high school within Southern’s district. Renewals are based on the applicant maintaining a 3.0 GPA and filing a renewal application by the established deadline (generally April 15).

Federal Work Study

The Federal Work Study Program (FWSP) is self-help aid earned on a wage per-hour basis through assigned part-time employment at on-campus locations. An effort is made to provide each FWSP recipient with a work experience that will complement his or her skills and/or academic objective. The hourly rate is at least the federal minimum wage, and students are paid every two weeks according to hours worked. To be eligible for work study, a student must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), demonstrate financial need, and be in good academic standing.

Loans

Federal Direct Student Loan Program

Southern students can apply for Federal Student loans through the Federal Direct Student Loan program. A student loan is borrowed money that must be repaid, along with interest that may accrue. Students applying for a Federal Direct Loans must complete a FAFSA, a Master Promissory Note, entrance counseling, and be enrolled at Southern for at least six credit hours.

Repayment begins six months after the student graduates, withdraws from college, or does not enroll at least half-time.  More information about student loans can be found at www.studentaid.gov.

Standards of Progress for Federal Financial Assistance Recipients (Policy SCP-4274)

Students who receive financial aid are required to meet satisfactory academic progress (SAP) toward a degree or certificate. This applies to all eligible students who receive assistance through federal, state, and institutional programs. Students who do not meet the satisfactory academic progress for federal financial aid may be unable to receive Title IV aid, but may still be able to attend Southern.

To be eligible for federal, state, and institutional aid, students must meet both quantitative (time-based), and qualitative (grade-based) standards. Students receiving financial aid must complete 67% of total cumulative credit hours attempted and maintain a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.0.

Students who receive financial aid must complete their degree within a certain amount of time. Students must complete the requirements for an eligible program of study within a time frame not to exceed 150% of the published program length. For example, if an academic program is 60 credit hours, the maximum credit hours they are eligible for is 90 (60 * 150% = 90). At the end of each semester, students’ progress toward their degree will be reviewed. All course work attempted will be considered in the calculation for meeting program completion requirements, including hours transferred from other institutions.

Students who are unable to complete a degree or a certificate in the allotted length of time may request an appeal for additional hours. Students must present a written SAP appeal along with an educational plan to the Financial Aid Office.

A committee composed of the Registrar, a Financial Aid representative, and a Student Success representative will review all financial aid appeals.

Policy SCP-4274, including attachments SCP-4274.A and SCP-4274.B, can be found on Southern’s website at www.southernwv.edu/administration/policies.

Consumer Complaint Procedures

Southern’s consumer complaint procedures were developed in compliance with federal and state guidelines to maintain eligibility for participation in Federal Title IV funding. For complaints regarding the institution’s management of the federal student financial aid program, please contact the Chief Student Services Officer. For complaints regarding the institution’s advertising and promotion of its programs, please contact the Chief Academic Officer.

All other forms of complaint are to be referred to the appropriate institutional office(s) responsible for the program or service.