Eligibility

  • Satisfactory Academic Progress

    All students who have completed a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or California Dream Act Application (CADAA) must meet the criteria stated in this policy in order to remain eligible for University, State and Federal Aid Financial aid. 

    Eligibility is based on satisfactory academic progress (SAP) standards established by the University, pursuant to federal law, to ensure that all financial aid recipients progress towards degree completion. 

    The Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships monitors qualitative and quantitative standards for undergraduate and graduate students after the end of the students’ completion of the academic year, and quarterly for students on Financial Aid Probation.

    Undergraduate Students

    Qualitative Standard – Grade Point Average (GPA)

    • Undergraduates must maintain a minimum cumulative 2.0 grade point average (GPA).

    • Graduate students must maintain a minimum 3.0 grade point average (GPA). 

    • Please note that while passing grades (P) and (S) are treated as completed units, they do not count in the GPA calculation.

    Pace (Quantitative) Standard – Unit Completion

    All students must complete a minimum of 67% of all cumulative coursework attempted.  

    • Pace is determined by taking the cumulative completed units and dividing them by cumulative attempted units. 

    • The first repeat of a course will apply toward the completed unit count, subsequent repeats will not. This does not apply to courses that are repeatable for credit (i.e. independent study courses.  This repeat policy is specific to financial aid and may differ from your College. 

    • Attempted units also include courses graded as Incomplete, Failed, Not Passed, or Withdrawn. 

    • Transferred units count towards both attempted and completed units, provided that they have been accepted by the university for credit.

    Maximum Time Frame of Eligibility for Financial Aid

    • The federally regulated financial aid requirement specifies that students are eligible to receive aid for 150% of the time normally required to complete an academic program.

    • Graduate students are required to meet the University approved time-to-degree standards for their program of study. Therefore, graduate students may not be eligible to receive financial aid once they exceed 150% of their program’s time-to-degree standard (i.e. 9 years for a program with a 6 year time-to-degree standard).

    Timeline

    • SAP is assessed at the end of the academic year, either spring or summer, depending on which is the last term of enrollment for each student

    • Students who meet the SAP policy will be set as satisfactory for the next academic year 

    • Students who do not meet the SAP requirements will be set as unsatisfactory for the next academic year and notified of their status

      • Students can appeal and/or regain eligibility

    Unsatisfactory Status and Regaining Eligibility

    • Students who do not maintain SAP will not receive financial aid in subsequent quarters and will be notified via their university email at the end of the academic year. 

    • The e-mail will include information about the process of appealing and process of regaining eligibility

    • Students can regain eligibility by successfully appealing or meeting SAP without financial aid. 

    • Our office encourages students to seek an appeal process as their first option.

    Appeal Process

    Appeals must include the a detailed statement that includes the following information: 

    • Circumstances that caused you to not meet Satisfactory Academic Progress

    • What has changed that will enable you to meet Satisfactory Academic Progress at the next evaluation.

    • The steps you will take to ensure you continue to meet Satisfactory Academic Progress in the future.

      • Third-party documentation is recommended for appeals but not required

    Students will typically be notified of the outcome of their appeal within 5-7 business days but may be longer during peak seasons. Appeals will not be accepted after the last day of instruction for the quarter that they are appealing for.

    Academic Plans

    Students required to submit a SAP Academic Plan includes:

    • Students who are not mathematically able to meet SAP within one term

    • Students who have not consistently met SAP requirements

    • Students who the committee determines to need additional supporting documentation

    If you are required to submit a SAP Academic Plan, it will be used to review your academic progress on a quarterly basis until you meet the SAP requirements or graduate, whichever is first. It is important that you utilize campus resources to create an achievable academic plan.

    Appeal Decisions

    What happens if an appeal is approved?

    • If your appeal is approved, you will be set to financial aid probation and are eligible for financial aid disbursements for that term

    • Financial aid disbursements for the next term of enrollment will be held, pending review of your academic progress and academic plan (if applicable)

      • You will be added to a short-term fee extension list while your academic progress is reviewed

      • On the first day of the quarter, you can visit our office for a short-term loan of up to $800 while your academic progress is reviewed

    • If you are placed on financial aid probation and meet SAP requirements after the academic review, your status will be updated to satisfactory and your SAP status will be assessed at the end of the next academic year 

    • If you are placed on financial aid probation and do not meet SAP requirements but meet your SAP Academic Plan after the academic review, your status will be updated to probation and your SAP status will be reviewed at the end of the next term 

    • If you are placed on financial aid probation and do not meet SAP requirements after the academic review, your status will remain as unsatisfactory and you will not be eligible for aid for that term. 

      • Any second appeal (or beyond) will be reviewed by a committee. At this stage, it is strongly recommended to submit third-party documentation which may include an SAP academic plan if you did not do so previously.

    What happens if your appeal is not approved?

    • If your appeal is not approved, you will remain as unsatisfactory and will not be eligible for financial aid disbursements until that status changes

    • Multiple appeals are accepted but cannot be submitted retroactively

     

     
  • Penalties for Drug Violations

    Federal law provides that a student who has been convicted of an offense under any federal or state law involving the possession or sale of a controlled substance during a period of enrollment for which the student was receiving Financial Aid shall not be eligible to receive any federal or institutional grant, loan, or work assistance during the period beginning on the date of such conviction and ending after the interval specified in the following table.

    If convicted of an offense involving:

    Possession of a Controlled Substance Ineligibility Period
    First Offense 1 Year
    Second Offense 2 Years
    Third Offense Indefinite
    Sale of a Controlled Substance Ineligibility Period
    First Offense 2 Years
    Second Offense Indefinite

    A student whose eligibility has been suspended based on a conviction for possession or sale of a controlled substance may resume eligibility before the end of the ineligibility period if:

    • The student satisfactorily completes a drug rehabilitation program that:
      • complies with the criteria prescribed in the federal regulations; and
      • includes two unannounced drug tests;
    • The student successfully passes two unannounced drug tests conducted by a drug rehabilitation program that complies with the criteria prescribed in the federal regulations; or
    • The conviction is reversed, set aside, or otherwise rendered nugatory.