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2014 SCASFAA Annual Conference April 1, 2014 “South Carolina Tuition Grants: Giving South Carolina Students a Choice”

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Presentation on theme: "2014 SCASFAA Annual Conference April 1, 2014 “South Carolina Tuition Grants: Giving South Carolina Students a Choice”"— Presentation transcript:

1 2014 SCASFAA Annual Conference April 1, 2014 “South Carolina Tuition Grants: Giving South Carolina Students a Choice”

2 Earl Mayo, Director Katie Harrison, Deputy Director Jessica Bagwell, Financial Aid Counselor Gena Miles, Staff Accountant SC TUITION GRANTS STAFF

3 QUICK FACTS South Carolina Residents Only Need-Based Grant Full-time Undergraduates Only (can be traditional undergrad or non-traditional evening students) 21 eligible SC Independent Colleges Must apply annually by June 30 deadline via the FAFSA

4 ACADEMIC REQUIREMENTS First-time Freshmen must: Rank in top 75% of graduating class OR Score 900 on SAT (Math & Critical Reading) OR Score 19 Composite on ACT OR Graduate from a South Carolina high school with a final GPA of 2.0 on the Uniform Grading Policy. Continuing students must: Pass 24 credit hours per year AND Meet the college’s Federal SAP Standards.

5 REVIEW OF AND AWARD YEARS FUNDING AVAILABLE FUNDS PROJECTED FUNDS SOURCES: State Recurring: $23,358,622 $23,617,386 Children’s Education Endowment: $4,028,820 $4,316,000 State Funds Interest: $6,591 $10,000 State Lottery Funds: $7,930,000 $7,930,000 Total Funding $35,324,033 $35,873,386

6 REVIEW OF AND AWARD YEARS June 30, 2013June 30, 2014 Funding Cutoff Date:June 30, 2013June 30, 2014 Applications Received: 35,01935,369 (Estimate) Commitments Made: 29,02629,316 (Estimate) Grants Realized: 13,503 13,639 (Estimate) Average Grant: $2,650 $2,660 (Estimate)

7 STATE LEGISLATIVE REPORT BUDGET REQUEST: Increase funding by $1.275 million in recurring funds to increase Maximum Grant by $100 to $3,000. Current Status: Sufficient increase recommended by Governor in Executive Budget ($258,784) to increase by $100 and included in State Budget passed by House. Budget request presented to Senate Finance Higher Education Subcommittee on March 27. Awaiting results of Senate Finance Committee.

8 MAXIMUM GRANT Maximum Grants for have been approved at $3,000 for all Traditional Program students at all colleges. Grant amounts for approved Non-Traditional programs at participating colleges/universities range from $630 - $3000.

9 ELECTRONIC ELIGIBILITY NOTICES TOTAL NOTICES SENT TO DATE: 12,882 (thru 3/25) (Total was 30,931) TOTAL S SENT: 12,496 (97.46%) TOTAL HARD COPY NOTICES: 332 (2.54%) (Includes 6 Resends --.01% -- for invalid addresses) POSTAGE SAVINGS: $5, (Total was $13,903.06) Cooperative Effort with the South Carolina Educational Assistance Authority (SCSLC)

10 AGENCY SECURITY ENHANCEMENTS Agency has implemented several new security measures to further protect student data. Efforts have been communicated with and approved by the Commission. Policies and procedures will be reviewed regularly, and additional security enhancements will be made in the future as needed.

11 Next Commission Meeting: June 18, :30 AM SCICU Office 1706 Senate Street Columbia

12 Grant Administration: Treatment of VA Chapter 33 SCTG Policies & Procedures Manual, Section III VA33 Benefits are treated the same as any other VA Chapter for the purpose of determining SCTG eligibility. Tuition Grant awards are NOT included when determining eligibility for Veterans Benefit, regardless of chapter designation. This policy has not changed since the Tuition Grants Commission received official guidance from the Central Veterans Administration Offices in December 2011

13 Grant Administration: Top Program Review Findings Satisfactory Academic Requirements Not Met for Returning Students SCTG Policies & Procedures Manual, Section V Students must pass a minimum of 24 credit hours per academic year (12 hours if enrolled F/T for only one semester and NO enrollment for the other semester) Summer school hours may be counted toward total hour requirement if the summer session ends prior to the beginning of the next award year

14 Grant Administration: Top Program Review Findings Satisfactory Academic Progress Requirements Not Met for Returning Students For students in TRADITIONAL programs, there are SAP formulas for part-time enrollment and for combining full and part-time enrollment. All students in approved NON-TRADITIONAL programs must pass 24 credit hours per academic year, including summer terms (no alternate enrollment allowances for non-traditional students) See Policies & Procedures Manual for guidance

15 Grant Administration: Top Program Review Findings Freshman Academic Requirements Not Met SCTG Policies & Procedures Manual, Section V Incoming freshman must graduate in the top 75% of their high school class OR score at least 900 on the combined math/verbal SAT OR score at least 19 on the ACT OR graduate from a SC high school with a final GPA of 2.0 (SC Uniform Grading Policy)

16 Grant Administration: Top Program Review Findings Freshman Academic Requirements Not Met A freshman student who is 22 years or older by September 1 st of the award year and who has obtained a high school diploma or equivalent is academically eligible for a freshman award Incoming freshman under the age of 22 who receive their GED or complete their high school diploma through an adult education program qualify only if they meet the SAT or ACT test score requirement

17 Grant Administration: Top Program Review Findings Signed Affidavit Not on File SCTG Policies & Procedures Manual, Section I Affidavit must be collected annually and must be on file in the student’s financial aid file prior to the student being reported as eligible on the Fall Enrollment Report, and no later than November 15 th A single, combined affidavit for all state programs may be used, assuming reference is made to all state aid programs by name and that it also meets the requirements of CHE

18 Grant Administration: Top Program Review Findings Funds Not Posted Within Five (5) Days SCTG Policies & Procedures Manual, Section III The transfer of funds to individual student accounts must be done within five working days of the college’s receipt of the EFT Any funds that cannot be transferred to an individual student’s account (including because of student’s ineligibility) must be returned to the Commission within twenty working days, accompanied by the appropriately completed SCTG Refund Form

19 Grant Administration: Top Program Review Findings Refunds Not Made Within Twenty (20) Days SCTG Policies & Procedures Manual, Section III Any funds received by a college for a student’s Tuition Grant payment that cannot be disbursed to the student must be refunded to the Commission within twenty working days of the later of either (a) the date the college receives the funds or (b) the date the college becomes aware that a student is ineligible for funds

20 Grant Administration: Top Program Review Findings Refunds Not Made Within Twenty (20) Days For SCTG purposes, the official date that the college becomes aware that a student is ineligible because of withdrawing or dropping classes to a less than full-time status is considered to be the date that the College Registrar is notified of the student’s change in enrollment status. All refunds must be accompanied by the appropriately completed SCTG Refund Form

21 Grant Administration: Program Reviews Of the 21 participating colleges, 1/3 have received a clean program review with no findings for five straight years Ensuring compliance with the Enrollment Report Certification and EFT Authorization (both signed by college administrators) should prevent program review findings

22 Grant Administration: Program Reviews Program reviews due annually on December 31 st Formal exit conference should be scheduled to discuss status and any findings If the Program Review contains no findings and no refund is due to the Commission as a result, the Program Review is considered closed. A letter indicating such will be mailed to the President by the Agency Director

23 Grant Administration: Program Reviews Refund of grant dollars resulting from Program Review findings should be made within twenty working days from the date of the exit conference; Program Review is not considered closed until all appropriate refunds have been made Management recommendations made by the auditor that do not require refunds should be responded to in the college’s official response to the findings

24 Grant Administration: Program Reviews Consecutive Year Findings: Having the same finding for three consecutive years will result in the college submitting a written plan to the Commission, outlining corrective measures Having the same finding for four consecutive years will result in the college being suspended for one year from being an eligible college for the Tuition Grants program

25 Grant Administration Questions? Discussion? Best Practices?

26 115 Atrium Way, Suite 102 Telephone:(803) Columbia, SC Fax:(803) Earl Mayo, Director Katie Harrison, Deputy Director


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