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August 2009 e-Newsletter

by Partin,Wesley Benjamin last modified Aug 17, 2009 04:49 PM

This is the thirteenth edition of the Financial Aid e-Newsletter. This publication is primarily for undergraduate and graduate students. It will help keep you informed of upcoming deadlines and financial aid news throughout the year.

Our goal is to receive and disburse all available financial aid so residual (excess) funds will be available prior to the start of classes. Read this e-newsletter to be informed on fall 2009 financial aid requirements, processing, procedures, and more!

In this edition

(1) Fall 2009 Aid Disbursement, Higher One, and Residual Funds

(2) Fall 2009 Financial Aid Advance

(3) Financial Aid & Bursar Account Balances In A Prior Aid Year

(4) Fall 2009 Part-Time Aid Adjustment

(5) Additional Financial Resources

(6) Federal Direct Stafford Loan Benefits/Fees

(7) Parent PLUS Borrowers

(8) Graduate/Professional PLUS Borrowers

(9) Kentucky KEES

(10) Reporting Outside Aid

(11) Scholarship Checks

(12) The UofL ULink Website

(13) Questions About Your Financial Aid

(14) Service Learning America Reads Job Opportunity

(15) Income-Based Repayment Plan

(16) Upcoming Important Dates

 

(1) Fall 2009 Aid Disbursement, Higher One, and Residual Funds

Aid Disbursement

Once the Student Financial Aid Office completes a review of your eligibility, we will electronically disburse all available financial aid funds to the Bursar's Office. The Bursar's Office will then post that aid to your account. Disbursed financial aid that exceeds your balance owed to the university is considered residual funds. Please note that some financial aid programs (such as the Kentucky KEES, ACG Grant, SMART Grant, TEACH Grant) have later disbursement dates. During the period from 8/17 through 8/28, financial aid will be disbursed to the Bursar's Office every day. After the registration period is over, disbursements of available financial aid to the Bursar's Office are scheduled to occur at least twice a week.

Higher One

The University of Louisville contracts with Higher One (an outside company that specializes in student refund payment services) to deliver all residual funds to students. With Higher One you can request either direct deposit of your residual funds to a free Higher One checking account with a debit card or direct deposit to your personal bank account. Students whose personal bank accounts are with a bank without Louisville area branches should consider a direct deposit to a free Higher One checking account because of several Higher One ATMs located on campus. To learn more about the UofL OneCard and the selection process, visit the Bursar's Office website or Higher One.

New Students

Shortly following your fall 2009 registration process, you should receive the mailing of the UofL OneCard. You can view the status of this mailing online at: https://uoflonecard.higheroneaccount.com/cardsearch/initSearch. If you misplaced this mailing or you previously received the mailing and discarded it, you may call Higher One at 1-877-663-5959. Confirm your address information is correct in ULink before requesting this mailing. The Higher One card sent in this mailing is required for you to select how you want to receive future refunds from UofL. To learn more about the UofL OneCard and the selection process, visit the Bursar's Office website or Higher One.

Residual Funds

Our first fall 2009 disbursement of available undergraduate and graduate financial aid funds to the Bursar's Office is scheduled for August 17th.  Law, Dental, and Medical students should check with their respective departments for information regarding fall 2009 disbursement of residual funds. The Bursar's Office will then apply those funds to fall accounts (bills). Please note there are thousands of account transactions, and they take some time to post to the student accounts. The first electronic file of residual funds from the August 17th disbursement is scheduled to be sent to Higher One by August 20th. During the period from 8/17 through 8/28, the Bursar's Office will send residual funds to Higher One every day. After the registration period is over, electronic files of residual funds sent by the Bursar's Office to Higher One are scheduled to occur at least twice a week. Please note that disbursement of financial aid funds, application of those funds to student accounts, and transmission of residual funds to Higher One may occur several times for students as funds become available prior to and during the semester. Students can monitor their account (listed under Tuition, Fees, Payment Options on the Student Services tab) on ULink for disbursed funds and indication that residual funds have been transmitted to Higher One.

The earliest date that residual funds would be received by students who have set their refund preference to a Higher One checking account is August 21st. The earliest date that residual funds would be received by students who have set their refund preference to be an ACH transfer to a personal bank account is August 24th. Students will receive an email notification from Higher One once their residual funds have been received and processed according to their selected delivery preference. Generally, funds are available the day after disbursement for students that selected a Higher One checking account. Residual funds are generally available in 2 - 3 business days for students who selected to receive residual funds to their personal bank account (ACH transfer).

(2) Fall 2009 Financial Aid Advance

The Financial Aid Advance will be offered again this fall 2009 via ULink in coordination with the Bursar’s Office. To qualify, you must have anticipated aid (aid that has not disbursed) that exceeds your bill. Students who have been sent residual funds of $500 dollars or more may not receive an advance. The maximum advance amount is $450 with a $5 processing fee. Undergraduates and graduates may begin applying and printing the advance request form from ULink on August 20th. Please note that the Bursar's Office has the final approval on each advance and the print-out is valid until 5:00 PM the next business day.

Law students, who begin classes on August 17th, may receive a Financial Aid Advance beginning on August 13th.

(3) Financial Aid & Bursar Account Balances In A Prior Aid Year

Due to federal regulations effective July 1, 2008, past aid year balances owed to the university cannot be paid with current aid year federal or state aid funds. For example, fall 2009 federal and state financial aid cannot be used to pay an existing summer 2009 or spring 2009 bill. Please review your account (listed under Tuition, Fees, Payment Options on the Student Services tab) on ULink to be sure your balance is $0 before the end of each term.

If you have an unpaid account balance, you may pay your account balance by credit card or e-check via ULink > Student Services tab > Tuition-Fees-Payment Options > Make a Payment. You can also pay your account balance by mailing a check to the Bursar's Office. Please make sure your student ID number is on the front of the check. Please mail to: Bursar's Office, University of Louisville, Louisville KY 40292.

(4) Fall 2009 Part-Time Aid Adjustment

If you have finalized your fall 2009 enrollment and you are attending less than full-time, then you may submit a fall 2009 Part-Time Aid Adjustment Form. Half-time is 6 credit hours for undergraduate students and 4.5 hours for graduate students (during the fall and spring semesters). By submitting this form, you are requesting that we proceed with making any necessary adjustments to your financial aid according to your current enrollment. If you only have loans and you are attending at least half-time, do not submit this form. The fall 2009 Part-Time Aid Adjustment Form is available online.

If you attend less than full-time and do not submit this form, then the adjustment and disbursement of your aid (based on your enrollment) will be delayed until early September. The Federal Pell Grant cannot be adjusted for classes added after the fall 2009 census date August 28th. If you drop classes during the 100% tuition refund period, your aid will be adjusted, and you may owe funds back to the university. If you withdraw from all your classes, your state and federal aid may be canceled, and you may owe all or a portion of your residual funds back to the university. We also encourage you to familiarize yourself with the Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Policy and the Return of Title IV Funds Policy to maintain your federal and state aid eligibility.

Our current office time line to complete paperwork is approximately 10-14 business days. Please note that completing this part-time adjustment form and the loan requirements for your first loan (Item #6, 7, and 8 below) will ensure your aid disburses in a timely manner.

(5) Additional Financial Resources

If you need additional financial aid resources and have not already consulted our office, please e-mail us or call 502-852-5511. A news announcement will be made on the Financial Aid website on September 18th if additional funds from the Perkins Loan program and work-study program become available for interested and eligible late applicants to request. Some additional sources are listed below:

Bursar’s Office Payment Plans

Federal Parent PLUS

Graduate/Professional PLUS Loan

Alternative Loan

Outside Scholarships

A Financial Festival event will be held in the Red Barn on Sept. 10th from 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. dealing with financial literacy.

(6) 2009-2010 Federal Direct Stafford Loan Benefits/Fees

2009-2010 Direct Stafford Loan Benefits and Fees

Stafford Loans that disburse on or after July 1, 2006 will be set a fixed interest rate of 6.8%. Subsidized Stafford Loans that disburse on or after July 1, 2009 for undergraduate students will be set at a fixed interest rate of 5.6%. Unsubsidized Stafford Loans that disburse on or after July 1, 2006 are set at a fixed interest rate of 6.8%. For the Unsubsidized Stafford Loan, interest begins to accrue on the date of disbursement. A 1.5% origination fee is charged at disbursement. The government pays 1.0% of the origination fee at disbursement, commonly called the loan rebate benefit.  This benefit is retained by the borrower if the first 12 monthly payments are made on time. This ultimately results in only 0.5% in fees being deducted for the loan proceeds at the time of disbursement. Please note, if you fail to make 12 on-time monthly payments, the up-front rebate is added to the borrower's principal loan balance.

First-Time Stafford Loan Borrower at UofL

For student loans to disburse in a timely manner, it is critical that students complete all required steps. For loans, this includes loan acceptance, master promissory notes, and entrance interviews. More information on student loans, including step by step processing, is available online. Below we will focus on the Stafford Loan.

If you are a first-time Stafford Loan borrower at U of L, you must accept your loan offer on ULink, complete an entrance interview, and have an active Master Promissory Note (MPN) with the Department of Education. Please note that if you previously borrowed from a FFEL lender/bank, you will need to complete a new entrance interview with Direct Loans. The entrance interview is available online at https://www.dl.ed.gov/.

Students must sign a Master Promissory Note (MPN) for their loan.  You may complete your MPN online at https://www.dlenote.ed.gov. Please note that if you previously borrowed from a FFEL lender/bank, you will need a new MPN with Direct Loans. Before going to the MPN website be sure to have:

1. Your social security number.

2. Your driver’s license number.

3. Your permanent address and telephone number.

4. Information for two references, including names, addresses, and telephone numbers.

(7) Parent PLUS Borrowers

If you are borrowing a Parent PLUS at UofL, you must complete a Parent PLUS Request Form and have a completed Parent PLUS Master Promissory Note (MPN) with the Department of Education.

Parents must sign a MPN for their loans. Your parent may electronically sign the MPN using their Department of Education PIN. This is the same PIN they used to sign your FAFSA electronically. If misplaced, your parent may register for a new PIN. If your parent is a first time Direct PLUS Borrower, they must complete a Master Promissory Note at https://www.dlenote.ed.gov. Please note that if your parent previously borrowed from a FFEL lender/bank, they will need a new MPN with Direct Loans.

More information on the Parent PLUS is available online.

As part of the application process, a credit check must be completed. If a parent does not pass the credit check, they will receive an endorser form. They still might be able to receive a PLUS loan if someone, such as a relative or friend who is able to pass the credit check, agrees to endorse their loan.

(8) Graduate/Professional PLUS Borrowers

If you are borrowing a Graduate/Professional PLUS at UofL, you must complete an entrance interview for this loan program and have an active Master Promissory Note (MPN) with the Department of Education.

To complete the entrance interview for the Graduate/Professional PLUS, visit https://www.dl.ed.gov/ and click on "Go" in the Entrance Counseling box. Then select "Combination - Stafford & PLUS Loans" as the type of counseling to complete. Please note that if you previously borrowed from a FFEL lender/bank, you will need to complete a new entrance interview with Direct Loans.

If you are a first time Direct Graduate PLUS borrower, complete a Master Promissory Note (MPN) at https://www.dlenote.ed.gov. Please note that if you previously borrowed from a FFEL lender/bank, you will need a new MPN with Direct Loans.

More information on the Graduate/Professional PLUS is available online.

As part of the application process, a credit check must be completed. If you do not pass the credit check, you may receive an endorser form. You still might be able to receive a Graduate PLUS loan if someone, such as a relative or friend who is able to pass the credit check, agrees to endorse your loan.

(9) Kentucky KEES

At this time estimated KEES awards have been placed on all student accounts that are eligible to receive this award, with the exception of home-schooled students and GED recipients. Home-schooled students and GED recipients need to contact our office to have their file reviewed for eligibility. There is no application required to have a KEES award applied to your account. However, if you do not see an award on your account and you believe you are eligible, please contact our office at 852-5511 so we may research your inquiry. Fall KEES funds will be received from KHEAA in late September and will be applied to student accounts as quickly as possible. If you are registered less than full-time, your KEES award will be adjusted accordingly. For more information, such as how your award is calculated or what are the requirements to maintain this award, please review KHEAA's KEES webpage.

(10) Reporting Outside Aid

If you are expecting to receive financial aid that is not currently listed on your ULink account, please report estimates of this aid online.

(11) Scholarship Checks

If you have received a scholarship check, please send it to our office with your name, student ID, and name of the award source or copies of any letters from the organization. If a check is made payable to you or both you and the university, be sure to sign the back of the check before submitting it to our office. Additional information for organizations on how to coordinate with our office regarding scholarship checks is available online.

(12) The UofL ULink Website

You can view your current bill and financial aid on your ULink account. You will also see your financial aid disbursements and residual funds once your financial aid is disbursed.

1. Log onto ULink at www.ulink.louisville.edu.
2. Enter your user id and password. If you are a first time user, follow instructions "For First-Time Users." This will show you how to obtain your user id and password. Keep your user id and password in a safe place.
3. Click on the "Student Services" tab.

From here, you can view your fall 2009 bill by selecting Account under the menu category Tuition, Fees, Payment Options.

OR

You can Accept/Decline Financial Aid under the menu category Financial Aid.
Select the 2010 Aid Year. Enter the appropriate action to accept, reduce, or decline your financial aid. Grants and scholarships do not require action on your part.

Several Financial Aid ULink Tutorials are available online.

(13) Questions About Your Financial Aid

If you have questions about your financial aid or need additional financial assistance, please e-mail us or contact our Call Center at 502-852-5511. Our Call Center is operated by the Financial Aid Counseling Team. Walk-in counseling is also available and no appointment is required.

Regular Call Center and Office Hours
Monday - Friday 9:00 to 5:00

Special Fall Registration Hours August 17th - 28th
Call Center: Monday - Friday 9:00 to 5:00
During these two weeks we receive an extremely high number of calls. Please be patient as you may be on hold for a few minutes.
Office: Monday - Friday 8:00 to 5:30

Special Fall 2009 Office Hours Beginning August 31st
Beginning August 17th (and continuing while fall and spring classes are in session), extended office hours (5:30 pm) on Tuesday and Wednesday.

(14) Service Learning America Reads Job Opportunity

Consider a federal work study job that positively impacts the Louisville Community:  The America Reads Tutor Program

America Reads Tutors work off-campus in either a Jefferson County Public School or local non-profit after-school program.  This is the highest paying FWS position on campus, starting at $8.00 with possible raises up to $8.50.  Students in this program earn their money faster and thus, work less hours to earn their award, giving them more time to devote to their own studies.

Those who work at schools may tutor reading, math, computer literacy or English as a Second Language.  They may also assist teachers in the classroom and help with special literacy events.

Those who work in after-school programs assist with homework help, English as a Second Language tutoring, or help plan and facilitate creative or recreational activities.

Students are required to attend all training sessions and on-going meetings once per month.  Students will be paid for this time.  In addition, they must attend orientation and any special training their site might require-this time will also be compensated.  You don't have to have experience tutoring--you will receive on-going training.

This is a great opportunity for students thinking about majoring in education or in an occupation working with children or youth.  It is also a rewarding experience for students who like working with kids and are interested in helping them to be successful learners.

To apply for this program or if you have questions contact Kim Shaver, kkjohn01@louisville.edu and visit the America Reads website at:  http://louisville.edu/leadership/programs/america-reads

(15) Income-Based Repayment Plan

On July 1, a major new student loan repayment option became available for the first time. Income-Based Repayment (IBR) caps monthly federal loan payments at an affordable level based on your income and family size, and forgives any debt and interest that remains after 25 years. If you owe more on your federal student loans than you earn in a year, you can probably benefit from IBR. The lower your income, the lower your monthly payment will be: in some cases, as low as $0. IBR is available for almost all federal loans - past, present, or future - made by any lender, for undergraduate or graduate school.

If you work in a government, nonprofit, or other public service job, you could have your remaining student loan debt forgiven after just 10 years of Income-Based Repayment, or certain other payments. Your loans have to be in the federal Direct Loan Program to qualify, but the 10 years don't have to be consecutive. You just need to make a total of 120 payments while working full-time for a public or nonprofit employer, starting on or after October 1, 2007.

For more information, including a simple calculator to estimate monthly payments, please visit http://www.IBRinfo.org.

(16) Upcoming Important Dates

Early Aug.
Mailing of work-study authorization card to students awarded Federal Work-Study for fall 2009

Aug. 10th
First scheduled disbursement of financial aid funds to students’ customer accounts for Law and first and second year Medical students for fall 2009

Aug. 13th
Last day of summer federal work-study

Aug. 14th
First day of fall federal work-study

Aug. 17th
First scheduled disbursement of financial aid funds to students’ customer accounts for undergraduates and graduates for fall 2009

Aug. 17th
Start extended walk-in office hours 8:00 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. (to end on Aug. 28th.)

Aug. 20th
First scheduled electronic file of undergraduate and graduate student residual funds to be sent to Higher One by the Bursar's Office

Aug. 24th
Fall classes begin for undergraduates and graduates

Aug. 28th
Extended walk-in office hours end

Sept. 1st
Tuesday and Wednesday extended office hours (5:30 p.m.) begin and continues while classes are in session for fall and spring

Sept. 2nd
Dollars and $ense – A Financial Literacy seminar presented by the Student Financial Aid Office
Strickler Hall West, Room 111
2:00 – 2:50 p.m.

Sept. 10th
Financial Festival on financial literacy from 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. in the Red Barn on the Belknap Campus

Sept. 18th
Decision made on availability of additional funds from the Perkins Loan and work-study programs to award eligible late applicants upon request

Sept. 18th
Dollars and $ense – A Financial Literacy seminar presented by the Student Financial Aid Office
Strickler Hall West, Room 111
Noon – 12:50 p.m.

Sept. 21st
If additional funds from Perkins Loan and work-study programs are available (decision on Sept 18th), student requests will be taken in-person once office opens

Sept. 30th
Deadline to file a SAP Appeal for the fall semester

Late Sept.
Kentucky Educational Excellence Scholarship (KEES) disbursement

Oct. 6th
Dollars and $ense – A Financial Literacy seminar presented by the Student Financial Aid Office
Strickler Hall West, Room 111
2:30 p.m. – 3:20 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. – 6:20 p.m.

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