Financial Aid

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Repayment of Federal Funds Policy For Students Who Withdraw or Cease Attending


Students who are withdrawing from Utah State University and who have Federal Financial Aid should meet with their financial aid counselor prior to withdrawing. To officially, formally withdraw from USU during the semester, or before the next semester begins, go to loa.usu.edu or call (435) 797-1132 for assistance. Please review the rest of this page for important information about withdrawing during the term, ceasing attendance and/or failing all classes during a term.

Financial aid comes with standards and limitations to encourage aid recipients to graduate in a timely manner. Students who completely withdraw from the University during the course of a semester are required to return a percentage of their Federal Student Financial Aid. All types of Federal Financial Aid are included in this repayment, including: Federal Pell Grants, Federal TEACH Grants, Federal Supplemental Grants, Federal Perkins Loans, and Federal Direct Loans.

The amount of repayment is based on the percentage of the semester completed. For example, if a student withdraws after completing 40% of the semester (calculated using calendar days), the student must return 60% of his or her Federal Student Aid.

  • Pell and TEACH grant recipients must document academic participation in each of their classes (including attending class, taking exams, turning in assignments, etc.) in order to avoid repaying additional grant money for which they are not eligible.
  • Students who withdraw, or cease attending, after completing 60% of the semester are not required to return aid.


If the student is eligible for a refund of tuition and fees, according to the University refund policy, the refund will be applied to the Federal Financial Aid obligation. A refund may not completely repay the obligation. The student will not be allowed to register for future classes, nor be eligible for future financial aid, until the debt is repaid.

More information about the USU refund policy.

Repayment of Federal Funds:

Students who are withdrawing from Utah State University and who have Federal Financial Aid should meet with their financial aid counselor prior to withdrawing to discuss how withdrawing will affect them financially.

Example:

A student has Federal Aid in the following amounts:
Federal Pell Grant..................................................$1,500
Federal Perkins Loan..............................................$1,200
Federal Direct Loan................................................$2,750
Total Federal Aid...................................................$5,450


If the semester has 115 calendar days and the student completely withdraws from the University on day 20, the repayment would be calculated as follows: day 20 divided by 115 calendar days = 17% of the semester completed, and 83% not completed. Therefore, 83% of the Federal Aid must be repaid (i.e., $5,450 x 83% = $4,523.50 must be repaid).

Withdrawal on day 20 would still allow a 100% refund of tuition and student fees. If the student owed USU $1,400, the refund would also be $1400. Therefore, $1400 would be applied to the repayment:

$4,532.50 - $1400 = $3,132.50 - this is the amount that must still be repaid to USU. Students that withdraw from USU after the third week of school generally do not receive tuition refunds.

Federal funds must be returned by USU no later than 45 days of the date the university determines that the student withdrew.

Federal funds are returned by USU in the following order until the calculated amount to return has been exhausted:

  • Federal Unsubsidized Direct Loans
  • Federal Subsidized Direct Loans
  • Federal Perkins Loan
  • Federal Direct PLUS Loan (Graduate students)
  • Federal Direct PLUS Loan (Parent)
  • Federal Pell Grant for which a Return is required
  • Federal SEOG Grant for which a Return is required
  • Federal Teach Grant for which a Return is required
  • Iraq Afghanistan Service Grant

Please note that Pell and TEACH grant recipients must document academic participation in each of their classes (including attending class, taking exams, turning in assignments, etc.) in order to avoid repaying additional grant money in addition to the returns discussed above.

Please note: Loan and Grant funds returned by the school because of withdrawal must be repaid immediately to USU. Remaining loan funds will go into repayment according to the terms of the loan.

Post Withdrawal Disbursement:

In some cases, federal financial aid has not been disbursed to the student at the time of withdrawal. The conditions under which a student would be owed a portion of their financial aid occurs when a student has earned, based on days attended, more aid than must be returned by USU. Within 30 days of the withdrawal, the financial aid office will determine eligibility and notify the student to see if they are interested in those funds, generally loans, that may have to be paid back at a later date. Any earned aid will be disbursed to the student within 45 days of when USU determined that the student withdrew.

USU Leave of Absence:

Students in good standing with USU are allowed to take a temporary leave of absence during or after the semester and return at a later time without having to re-apply for admission (in most cases.) If a federal financial aid recipient takes a leave of absence during the semester, they are subject to the repayment of federal funds policy outlined above. If a federal financial aid recipient starts their leave of absence after the term, then they are not subject to the policy.

Date of official withdrawal

The last date of particiaption is determined when the student notifies USU about withdrawing from the semester by speaking to an academic advisor, financial aid counselor, or registrar OR the date the student submits a withdrawal request using loa.usu.edu.

Please note: Loan and Grant funds returned by the school because of withdrawal must be repaid immediately to USU. Remaining loan funds will go into repayment according to the terms of the loan.

Unofficial Withdrawals:

Students who cease attending and/or receive all F and/or NF grades for the semester must have participated in an academic activity (including attending class, taking exams, turning in assignments, etc.) through sixty percent of the semester or will have to repay some or all of the federal funds received.

Date of unofficial withdrawal:

The last date of participation documented by an instructor on Canvas or by email correspondence will be used to determine what percentage of the semester the student participated and a calculation will be made to determine the amount of federal aid that must be returned. If USU is unable to determine the date the student ceased attending, it will assume the student attended 50 percent of the semester when calculating how much aid must be returned. In some cases, such as all NF grades, the entire amount of federal aid for that semester must be returned.

Please note: Loan and Grant funds returned by the school because of withdrawal must be repaid immediately to USU. Remaining loan funds will go into repayment according to the terms of the loan.

This policy is federal law and may not be appealed. Further details are available from the Financial Aid Office, TSC 106; (435) 797-0173.