Federal Financial Aid Programs

Financial aid funds post to student accounts after the financial aid census date. The census date typically marks the end of the add/drop period for the semester. This is the date we take a "snapshot" of all students' enrollment to establish the "official enrollment" for reporting purposes and financial aid eligibility.

The classes for which a student is registered as of the census date determine the amount of financial aid he/she will receive. Enrollment as of the census date will be compared to the Enrollment Status on the student's Award Letter to determine if the eligibility requirements are still being met for each of the aid programs listed. Award revisions are sent via e-mail to a student’s University account. It is possible for a student's aid to be increased, decreased, or even canceled.

If a student increases or reduces the number of credits enrolled in before the census date, the financial aid may be adjusted, as appropriate, for the new enrollment level. If aid is reduced and a balance on the SU account is created, the student will be responsible for payment. If credits are added after the census date, aid will not be increased. Aid may be affected if the student is taking courses that begin after the census date. For example, if a student is enrolled in a traditional undergraduate program and taking a class that starts after the census date, the Federal Pell Grant will not be disbursed until after the last drop date for which the student is enrolled. If the student fails to begin attendance in all classes, the grant will be reduced accordingly. Loans will disburse when the student reaches half-time enrollment. Financial aid may also be affected if a student submits FAFSA information or corrections after the census date.

The Financial Aid Office should be notified immediately concerning any changes in enrollment. Please note:

  • Enrollment status is monitored after the drop date for each of the sessions for which a student is enrolled during the semester. Once half-time enrollment is attained, the Financial Aid Office will disburse loan funds. For example, if an undergraduate student is enrolled for three credit hours in 8-week 1 and three credit hours in 8-week 2 during the fall semester, the loan will be disbursed after the 8-week 2 drop date. The student must be enrolled at-least half-time at the time of disbursement. Federal grants will post after the LAST drop date for all sessions for which a student is enrolled in the semester.
  • State awards post upon receipt of the funds from the state of Maryland; generally, November for the fall semester, March for the spring semester.
  • Private scholarships and awards from independent sources will be credited upon receipt of these funds by the Student Accounts Office. Often times, these awards are sent to the University in one check and therefore post as a single disbursement for the fall semester.
  • Credit Balance - For those students with a credit balance resulting from financial aid, a refund check will be issued by Student Accounts Office. State aid recipient refund checks may be delayed due to the receipt date of these funds.