Financial Aid Purpose Statement
The primary purposes of the Financial Aid Office are to:
- Help students and their families navigate the “world” of financial aid
- Provide as many students as possible with the resources to help meet their financial need
- Distribute scholarships and grants in an equitable manner
- Further the mission of the institution
Our goal is to honor our Lord by practicing good stewardship of the financial resources entrusted to us. A secondary goal of our program is to encourage the students to practice good stewardship of the financial resources the Lord has provided them.
Please refer to the Financial Aid Handbook on the Covenant web site at: http://www.covenant.edu/financialaid for financial aid program details and contact the Financial Aid Office with additional questions at 706.419.1126 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Covenant is approved to disburse veterans’ benefits to students who qualify. If you qualify for VA benefits, send a completed 22-1990 form and a copy of your DD214 to: VA Certifying Official, Office of Records, Covenant College, 14049 Scenic Highway, Lookout Mountain, GA 30750, or email with any questions to RecordsOffice@covenant.edu. Covenant College is a participant in the Yellow Ribbon program. For more information regarding all VA benefits, visit www.GIBill.va.gov.
Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy
Federal regulations mandate that colleges establish standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) for students receiving Title IV financial assistance. These standards are also applicable to institutional funds to maintain a consistent policy for all student groups. Satisfactory progress for students will be determined annually at the beginning of each academic year by the Office of Records. Normally, students may receive aid for the entire award year as long as all qualitative and quantitative standards listed below are met. Students may not receive financial aid disbursements after losing eligibility until SAP standards have been met or a waiver has been granted. Students who have an academic status of Probation or Suspension at the beginning of each academic year are not considered to be making SAP and will be required to appeal to the SAP Committee to be considered for eligibility to receive financial aid for that semester while on financial aid probation. These students will be evaluated after each semester and must either be making SAP or fulfilling their Academic Plan in order to receive aid during the next semester. Students who are Suspended at the conclusion of a semester will also need to appeal for consideration of enrollment for the next semester. In all of these cases, the student permitted to continue receiving financial aid must work with the Center for Student Success to establish an academic plan and demonstrate they are making SAP in order to continue enrollment.
Qualitative standards: Normally, students must earn the minimum total institutional grade point average designated for the number of overall attempted hours as listed below. By the end of the student’s second academic year (measured as a period of time, not by the student’s class level), students must normally have a 2.00 overall grade point average which includes all courses: institutional and transfer. The manner in which all grades are used in the calculation of a grade point average is outlined in the Credit and Grading System section under Academic Information.
|Overall Hours Attempted
||Minimum Institutional GPA
|26.00 and above
Quantitative standards: Students must successfully pass 66% of the overall attempted hours since enrolling at Covenant College. Example: Students attempting 30 hours during their first year must pass 20 hours to make SAP. Letter grades considered to have “passed” a course include CR, P, S and all letter grades A though D-. Attempted hours are determined by course registration immediately after the last day to add a class, which is two weeks into the term. With a minimum of 126 hours required for a degree from Covenant, students are eligible for financial aid for a maximum of 189 overall attempted hours. Eligibility ends the semester after the student attempts the 189th academic hour.
Students enrolled on Academic Probation are also on Financial Aid Probation and not considered to be making SAP. Students will be required to submit an Academic Assessment and Planning Form to the Appeals Committee to be considered for enrollment and eligibility to receive financial aid for the fall semester. If the appeal is granted and the student enrolls and receives aid for the fall semester, their SAP status will be reviewed prior to spring semester enrollment and disbursement of aid. In all of these cases, the student must work with the Academic Support Office to establish and follow an academic plan and accountability structure to ensure the student is able to make progress toward SAP in order to continue enrollment.
Generally, all attendance periods of the student’s enrollment, even when a student did not receive federal student aid are counted toward the maximum attempted hours. Hours attempted in different degree programs (e.g. non-accredited; technical diploma or certificate programs; remedial courses; change of major) may be excluded from a maximum attempted hours calculation, however, any courses that are accepted toward the current program must be included. Students may appeal a determination that the student is not making satisfactory progress by sending a letter with appropriate documentation to the Office of Records regarding any unusual and/or mitigating circumstances (e.g. health reasons, family reasons, or personal reasons) warranting a variance from these standards. The appeal does not change the student’s GPA or credit hours earned but may allow the student to receive aid while still below the SAP standards. The student should contact the Office of Records to begin the appeal process.
Failing to demonstrate SAP does not preclude enrollment at Covenant College as long as the student is otherwise academically eligible. Students may be permitted to enroll in future terms without aid to raise their total institutional grade point average and/or to earn a sufficient number of hours to be eligible for financial assistance for the next academic term. To reestablish financial aid eligibility, the student must contact the Office of Records and provide the documentation required to reestablish SAP and reapply for aid. If eligibility is reestablished after the fall term, financial aid, including Pell and campus-based funds can only be awarded for the spring term. A student who has regained eligibility may receive a Stafford and PLUS loan based on their eligibility for the entire period of enrollment (the full academic year).