Financial Aid

Keeping Your Financial Aid

Depending on the type of aid you have received (scholarship or student loan), you will need to meet certain criteria to keep your financial aid. The rules for keeping your eligibility for both federal and state financial aid (i.e., student loans) are detailed below.

Federal Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Policy

To maintain your eligibility for federal financial aid, you must comply with the following cumulative minimum academic standards at the end of every semester. Failure to meet minimum standard requirements may result in denial of your federal financial aid.

Minimum Standards

Federal financial aid applicants must have a cumulative GPA of 2.00 and a pace of progression (completion rate) of 67% of cumulative attempted credit hours at the end of every semester. Transfer hours count as cumulative attempted hours and cumulative completed hours. This is the federal formula for calculating your pace of progression in meeting minimum standards:

PACE = 

Cumulative number of earned hours

Cumulative number of attempted hours 

Good Standing

Federal financial aid recipients who maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.00 and a cumulative completion rate of 67% at the time of evaluation are considered to be in good standing and are eligible for aid.

Financial Aid Warning

If you fail to meet federal eligibility standards at the time of evaluation, you will be given a financial aid warning; you will continue to receive federal aid for one semester. You are expected to return to good standing or meet minimum academic standards at the end of the semester of warning. If you do not return to good standing, you become ineligible for federal aid.

Reinstatement of Federal Aid Eligibility

If you fail to return to good standing at the end of the warning period, you may apply for a re-determination of eligibility through the federal financial aid appeal process. Conditions for regaining your eligibility through a successful appeal may include the death of a family member, student illness or injury or other mitigating circumstances. To file an appeal, you must complete a Financial Aid Appeal form, write a letter and provide documentation to explain mitigating circumstances (i.e., the reason you failed to meet minimum standard requirements) and also explain what has changed in your situation that will help you meet minimum SAP requirements at the next evaluation.

Financial Aid Probation

If your appeal is successful, your federal financial aid will continue for one probationary semester. During your semester of probation, you must meet the conditions outlined in the appeal decision or follow the learning plan established by the Academic Standards Committee. Your learning plan will ensure that you are meeting standards and will provide you with checkpoints for your progress. If you successfully complete your learning plan, you may continue to receive federal aid even though SAP standards are not met.

Maximum Timeframe

Federal financial aid eligibility is limited to 150% of a program’s credit length. If it becomes clear that you cannot graduate within this period, you become ineligible for federal financial aid.If you have an approved change of major or program, your pace can be recalculated. Your student transcript will be re-evaluated for earned credits that transfer to the new program. Credits transferred to the new program become part of the cumulative attempted and earned credits that factor into the new 150% timeframe calculation.

Consortium Agreements

If you are enrolled in more than one institution under consortium agreements, you are subject to your home institution’s Satisfactory Academic Progress policy. 

Elements That Affect Cumulative Grade Point Average & Pace of Progression

These actions affect the calculation of your pace and can affect your federal financial aid status:

  • Incomplete and withdrawal classes will be counted as credits attempted.
  • Repeated classes for credit will be counted as credits attempted.
  • Non-credit remedial classes are not offered within degree programs and will not be counted as credits attempted.

The Federal SAP Process

  • You are notified in writing if you are in Financial Aid Warning Status.
  • If you are in Financial Aid Warning status and you fail to return to good academic standing within one semester (career G.P.A. 2.0 and cumulative pace of progression 67%), you receive a written notification to file an appeal with the Office of Financial Aid.
  • If your appeal is approved, you qualify for one probationary semester with financial aid.
  • If you file an appeal and it is not feasible for you to return to good standing within one probationary semester, you must have a learning plan.
  • A learning plan is a clearly articulated plan with measurable steps to return to good academic standing in a reasonable timeframe.
  • Following the learning plan qualifies you for one semester of financial aid.
  • If your learning plan extends beyond one semester, you must file a new appeal with the Office of Financial Aid at the beginning of each semester.
  • Your appeal may require an adjustment to the steps required to return to good standing.

Summary of Statuses & Actions 

  • Financial Aid SAP standards: 2.0 cumulative grade point average and 67% pace of progression.
  • First semester not meeting SAP standards = WARNING status for one semester with financial aid eligibility.
  • Action required: None
  • Second semester not meeting SAP standards = PROBATION status or LEARNING PLAN.
  • Action required: Student appeal with documentation. evaluation of eligibility for one semester of probation with financial aid at the end of which the student returns to good standing or learning plan with specific timeline to return to good standing.
  • Subsequent semester = LEARNING PLAN
  • Action required: Student appeal with documentation. Learning plan adjustment if necessary to return to good standing and a specific timeframe established.
  • Financial aid eligibility is determined one semester at a time preceded by an appeal each subsequent semester.
  • Department Chair involvement: This is required only when we are unsure whether a student can return to good standing within one probationary semester or in the case of a required learning plan. 

Washington State Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Policy 

If you are receiving Washington state aid, you will be monitored at the end of every semester for completion of the required number of credit hours. If you do not meet the requirements, you will receive a written notice from the Office of Financial Aid. The required credit loads for minimum credit-hour requirements are detailed below.

  • Full-Time: Enroll in a minimum of 12 credit hours per semester and complete a minimum of 24 credit hours per academic year.
  • Three-Quarter Time: Enroll in a minimum of 9 credit hours per semester and complete a minimum of 18 credit hours per academic year.
  • Half-Time: Enroll in a minimum of 6 credit hours per semester and complete a minimum of 12 credit hours per academic year.
  • Summer: Enroll in a minimum of 6 credit hours and complete a minimum of 6 credit hours to maintain financial aid eligibility.

Probation

If you are receiving Washington state aid and you complete at least half of your credit load but fewer than the required number of credit hours, you will not be making satisfactory academic progress and you will be placed on probation for one semester. Your Washington state aid will continue to be disbursed for one semester. During your probationary semester, you must complete the deficit credit hours from the prior semester, in addition to completing the current semester required credit load. If you successfully complete the deficit credit hours in addition to the current semester required credit load, you regain good standing and continue to be eligible for state aid. If you do not complete your deficit credit hours, you will be suspended from state aid program(s).

Suspension

If you complete fewer than half of the required number of credit hours during the semester for which you received Washington state aid, you will be denied further disbursements and will be suspended from the program.

If you are a Washington state aid recipient currently on probation and you do not complete deficit credit hours from the previous semester in addition to your current semester required credit load, you will be denied further consideration and will be suspended from the program.

Reinstatement of State Funding Following Unsatisfactory Progress

If you are suspended from the program, you may petition for reinstatement based on extenuating circumstances through the Financial Aid Office for the following semester. If your petition is approved, you will be placed on probationary status pending your ability to demonstrate satisfactory academic progress. If you do not achieve satisfactory academic progress during your probationary period due to extenuating circumstances, you may petition through the Office of Financial Aid for a continued probationary status.

Washington State Need Grant Repayment Policy

The Washington Student Achievement Council has instituted a grant repayment policy for students withdrawing before 50% of the semester  for which a grant was disbursed. The grant repayment policy for Cornish College of the Arts is as follows:

Sample Repayment Calculation:

  • A student with a semester State Need Grant Award of $4259 who attends less than 50% of the semester  is considered to have an unearned grant equal to the percentage of non-attendance and will be responsible to repay 50% of the unearned portion of the grant to the Washington Student Achievement Council.
  • Therefore a student attending 20% of the semester will owe a repayment according to the following calculation:
  • 80% non-attendance (or unearned portion of the grant) is .80 x $4259 = $3407.20.
  • 50% of unearned portion of the grant is .50 x $3407.20= $1703.60.
  • The required repayment equals $1703.60.