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Applying for aid at the graduate level is easier than undergraduate however there are not as many scholarship and grant opportunities. Federally, there is only the unsubsidized loan. Please contact your Graduate department for information on scholarship/grant/assistantship opportunities.
If you are requested to provide proof of citizenship or eligible non-citizen documentation to receive financial aid at MSU you MUST bring the ORIGINAL documentation into our office so that we can make a colored copy of your ORIGINAL documentation. We do NOT accept black and white copies, or copies made by any other person besides an employee of the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships. If you are an out-of-state student and cannot provide the requested ORIGINAL documentation, than we will accept a NOTARIZED COLORED copy of your documentation. Please do not ever fax or email this documentation. If you are out-of-state, the required method of submitting your notarized colored documentation is through the mail.
Federal TEACH Grant for Graduate Students (GTEACH)
MSU Denver began participating in the Federal TEACH Grant Program at the graduate level during the 2010-2011 academic year. Only students who are pursuing a Master of Arts in Teaching, concentrating in Special Education, qualify for the GTEACH at MSU Denver. Other eligibility requirements include:
Students who are retired teachers or who are currently teaching are exempt from the 3.25 GPA requirement.
If you are pursuing a Master of Arts in Teaching degree, concentrating in Special Education, and are interested in receiving the Federal Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant at the graduate level, submit a GTEACH Pre-Application to MSU Denver’s Office of Financial Aid.
Important Notice: The Federal TEACH Grant is not need based and is awarded in amounts of up to $4,000/academic year and is subject to a graduate lifetime maximum of $8,000. The Grant is pro-rated based on the student’s enrollment status. Students receiving the Federal TEACH Grant agree to teach full time for at least four years in a Title I school within eight years of earning the Master in the Art of Teaching degree. A majority of the classes taught by the student within this 8 year period must be in Special Education. If the student fails to do so, the Federal TEACH Grant is converted to an unsubsidized loan, accruing interest as of the date of the first disbursement.
|Enrollment||Award Amount per Term|
|Less than 5 credits (1/2 time)||$500|
|5 credits (1/2 time)||$1,000|
|6-8 credits (3/4 time)||$1,500|
|9+ credits (full time)||$2,000|
For more information, visit the Federal TEACH Grant webpage.
Loans are types of financial assistance that must be repaid. Be sure that you understand the terms of any loans you borrow for your education. It is important that you and your family consider the amount of loans you truly need for your education related costs.
Federal Direct Loans (unsubsidized only) are available for graduate students and are made through the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program. For additional eligibility requirements and information please visit our Federal Direct Loans Webpage.
The Graduate PLUS Loan is available to graduate students who are enrolled at least half-time in an eligible degree program. These loans are funded by the U.S. Department of Education and are credit-based. Click here for more information about Graduate PLUS Loans.
This loans program expired in September 2017 and is no longer available for awarding. If you borrowed Perkins Loans in previous years at MSU Denver please contact the Perkins Loan Office to inquire about repayment at 303-615-0072. Email: [email protected]
Alternative Loans, also known as Private Loans, can help a student cover the difference between their cost of attendance and financial aid. Alternative Loans should only be considered after careful review of your financial aid package. Please visit ELMSELECT for additional information about alternative loans.
Entrance counseling is mandatory for all first-time Federal Direct Loan borrowers at MSU Denver to inform you of your rights and responsibilities as a student borrower. The link for entrance counseling can be found at https://studentaid.gov/entrance-counseling/
Once a student graduates or drops below half-time status, they will need to make plans to begin repayment of these loans. Exit counseling is available to those who graduate, drop below half-time, or withdraw from the university. Exit counseling can be found at StudentLoans.gov as well. In most cases, students have an initial 6 month grace period before they must make their first payment.
There are many repayment options available to student borrowers as well as options for loan consolidation, forgiveness, or discharge. For more information, visit the Debt Management section of our website.
What is Work-Study?
Work-study is an employment program that provides paid jobs (typically on campus) for students who need to work to earn a portion of their education expenses. Graduate students may be eligible to receive federal work-study funds.
Priority work-study funds are allocated first to students that earned work-study in the prior academic year.
Summer work-study is awarded in late-April. A WKSUM form must be turned in to the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships to be eligible for award consideration.
Please note, graduate students are only eligible for Federal Work Study which means they must be FAFSA eligible.
Federal Need Based Work-Study Criteria:
The average award for an academic year is $8,000 (this may vary depending on funding). This is based on your available unmet need & must be within your Cost of Attendance. The hourly pay ranges from $14.77 to $17.00 per hour.
Work-study is awarded on a first come, first served basis. Students who are interested in receiving work-study must submit a WK___ form (available on the Forms section of the Financial Aid page). This form must be signed by the supervisor and all the necessary information must be complete.
Students who have already received work-study in the previous year and have a complete file by our office priority packaging deadline will be offered work-study before new applicants. These students must submit the WK__ form for the award to be accepted by a set deadline or the award will be cancelled.
Students who apply after the deadline and/or after funds have already been allocated are placed on a waitlist. The waitlist is awarded in date order that the WK__ form is received and that requirements are complete. Students who do not earn their work-study within the first three payrolls will have their work-study award cancelled.
Work-Study funds will be canceled if the following occurs:
Work-Study funds will be reduced if the following occurs:
For policies and procedures regarding work-study employment, please see the Student Employment Portal or contact us at the following address or phone number:
890 Auraria Parkway, Suite 310
Denver, CO 80204
(Student Success Building)
Email: [email protected]
The short-term student loan program has been serving MSU Denver’s diverse student population for years by offering interest free, short term (30 day) loans to qualified MSU Denver students. Short Term Loans serve as a crucial financial bridge to students awaiting their financial aid checks at the beginning of each semester. Access to Short Term Loan funds enables students to purchase textbooks and supplies needed to succeed in classes. The Short-Term Student Loan Program can also help students meet other unexpected financial expenses that may occur throughout the term.
• Must be enrolled in a minimum of 6 credit hours at MSU Denver for the corresponding semester.
• Must have previously completed at least 6 credit hours of coursework at MSU Denver.
• Must have a complete financial aid file with approved awards pending disbursement
-or- qualifying on/off campus employment to use as collateral.
• In order to use off-campus employment as a source of collateral, students must submit their two most recent paystubs with the Short Term Loan Application/Letter of Understanding, as well as meet all other eligibility criteria. Decisions are made on a case-by-case basis pending employment verification.
• Student account must be in good financial standing with all previous semester balances paid off in full. Cannot be on academic probation or financial aid suspension (below 67% cumulative completion rate and/or 2.0 cumulative GPA).
• Can borrow up to $515.00 (minus a $15.00 processing fee) for each Short Term Loan.
All students must submit the Short Term Loan Application and the Letter of Understanding, along with any other documentation needed to show collateral (off-campus employment). Currently, these forms are only available in hardcopy form. Use the links below to access them and please submit to the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships in person or via fax.
STLAPP – Short Term Loan Application (find on our Student Forms Page)
For more information on the Short-Term Loan Program, please refer to our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page -or- visit us in the Student Success Building– Area 6, Suite 130. Phone: 303.556.8593, Fax: 720.778.5833.
Verification is the process of confirming that information reported by you and your spouse (if applicable) on the FAFSA is accurate. If selected for verification, the Office of Financial Aid will notify you through your MSU Denver email account.
When selected for verification, a copy of your and your spouse’s (if applicable) U.S. Federal IRS Income Tax Returns, W-2 forms, and/or other information must be submitted to our office. By signing the FAFSA, you have agreed, if asked, to provide information that will verify the accuracy of your completed FAFSA. If this information is not provided, you will not receive financial aid. If you were awarded and received financial aid based on incorrect information, you will have to repay any funds disbursed.
All financial aid funds can be used for your educational expenses, including living expenses, while you are in school.
It is our intent to have your financial aid credited to your student account as early as 10 business days before the first day of class for each term. In accordance with federal regulation, this is the earliest date that aid can be disbursed. You must, however, have a complete application on file in our office to have your aid disbursed. If you apply late or do not complete your file promptly, your financial aid funds may be delayed. Almost all financial aid awards (with the exception of out-of-state loan checks, alternative loan checks, consortium checks, and some scholarship funds) are disbursed into your student account by the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships. Contact our office for more information regarding the schedule of disbursements.
All students will initially receive an aid package quote that is based on full-time enrollment status (6 or more credit hours each semester). However, if you make any changes to your enrollment status prior to the census date (which is the “Last Day to Add/Drop Full-Semester Classes with 50% Refund” date as published in MSU Denver’s Academic Calendar for each semester), your entire aid package may be prorated if your enrollment status drops to less than full time. If you have already accepted your aid and it has paid into your student account, the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships may have to adjust and bill a portion of your aid to keep within your total Cost of Attendance resulting in a balance owed to MSU Denver.
Likewise, if you increase your enrollment status upward from half-time enrollment prior to the census date, you may be eligible for an increase in your awards. Please note that each time you adjust your enrollment status before census date, your aid award will be prorated and your student account will be adjusted for necessary increases or decreases in tuition charges and financial aid awards. Notification of any changes to your awards will be sent via email to your Student Hub.
For Graduate students to maintain their full eligibility in Federal Stafford Loans, they must be established in at least 3 credit hours or more for the term.
Federal Stafford Loans and the Graduate PLUS can be accepted through Student Hub.
In order to receive financial aid, you will need provide information to the federal government and have the information processed by our office. Once this has occurred, your aid may be awarded once your file is considered complete.
Graduate students will be awarded based on half-time enrollment each aid year. Half-time enrollment for graduate students is based on 3 graduate credit hours each semester. Graduate students must be enrolled in at least half-time to be eligible for Federal Direct Stafford Loans. For enrollment less than half-time the Office of Financial Aid will not be able to process any aid requests. Any student that is registered more than half-time may request for an increase in their budget based off of the tuition amount they are being charged for their courses.
Before receiving a Federal Direct Loan, borrowers are required to complete a student loan entrance counseling interview. This quick and easy interactive counseling session provides useful tips and tools to help you develop a budget for managing your educational expenses. It also helps you understand your loan responsibilities when you enter repayment.
The Master Promissory Note (MPN) is required to be completed by each borrower. The MPN is a legal contract that binds you to the federal government. Signing this document indicates that you promise to repay the student loan you are taking out. The master promissory note also includes important language about rights and responsibilities as a borrower. Both subsidized and unsubsidized Direct Loans are covered under the master promissory note.
All students will initially receive an aid package quote that is based on full-time enrollment status even if you indicated three-quarter time or half-time anticipated enrollment on your FAFSA. However, if you make any changes to your enrollment status prior to the census date (which is the last day of each semester that you can drop a full-semester course and have it deleted from your academic record), your entire aid package will be prorated. If you increase or decrease your enrollment status from half- or three-quarter time enrollment prior to the census date, your award package will be prorated to the appropriate enrollment level. Please note that each time you adjust your enrollment status before census date, your aid award will be prorated and your student account will be adjusted for necessary increases or decreases in tuition charges and financial aid prorations.
Proration of aid ceases after each semester’s census date. At that time, your aid package and the amount of aid credited to your student account will be held at the appropriate amounts based on your recorded enrollment status on census date. No increases or decreases to your aid award will be made after the census date based on changes to your enrollment status. However, if you reduce your enrollment hours after the census date, you will be subject to the Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) regulations governing the completion rate for that term. All aid proration activities will be reflected on your student account billing statements. Therefore, we encourage you to change your enrollment status as little as possible.
Please note: If our office receives your FAFSA after the census date of the semester, aid will be disbursed according to your current enrollment rather than frozen hours. Federal Stafford Loans are ALWAYS disbursed according to current enrollment.
Graduate students Enrollment Level by Credits:
Full-Time Enrollment: 6+ credit hours
3/4 Time Enrollment: 4-5 credit hours
Half-Time Enrollment: 3 credit hours (MINIMUM OF FEDERAL LOANS TO DISBURSE)
Less than Half-Time Enrollment: 1-2 credit hours
Once you have your financial aid, you will need to maintain good standing with the University to keep your aid. Please refer to the information below, specifically the Graduate Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Policy.
You have the right to
It is your responsibility to
The U.S. Department of Education has required institutions and students to repay or refund unearned student aid funds. Student aid may be considered unearned if a student withdrawals completely during a term in which federal Title IV money was received. Refund and repayment regulations specify, in complex formula, exactly how much is due back to the federal programs from the institution and/or the student. The Return of Funds calculation determines how much aid a student earned based on how many days the student attended classes. The Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships uses the date the student withdrew from MSU Denver to determine the date of withdrawal in the calculation. The definition of what constitutes a student’s withdrawal date is below.
The Higher Education Amendments of 1998 adopted a new approach for the return of unearned federal funds. The new approach became law on October 7, 1998 and was implemented in the 2000/2001 year.
Federal Regulations require that all or a portion of a student’s Title IV financial aid be returned to the appropriate aid program following the student’s complete withdrawal from classes. Following withdrawal, any credit balance in the student’s tuition and fees account will first be refunded to the aid programs from which funds were awarded. Any remaining credit balance will be refunded to the student. The student may owe the school money if funds were disbursed directly to the student.
For information on how to withdraw from your classes or to provide official notice of your intent to withdraw, please follow this link to the Office of the Registrar: https://www.msudenver.edu/registrar/student/dropandwithdrawal/
For important dates to consider for withdraw and tuition refund policy, please visit this Bursar Office webpage: https://www.msudenver.edu/bursar/importantdates/
Schools have certain responsibilities if a student with Title IV funds:
A student’s withdrawal date is:
A student is considered an unofficial withdrawal:
The Office of Financial Aid’s responsibilities in regard to the return of Title IV funds follow:
The student’s responsibility in regard to the return of Title IV funds include:
Return of Title IV funds to the Federal government will be in the following order:
When students apply for financial aid, the government uses standard formulas to determine financial aid eligibility and dependency status. All students are treated equally by the formula that determines aid eligibility. Since the federal government understands that not all student and family situations are similar, they have given schools the authority to make individual adjustments to a student’s file on a case-by-case basis.
This process of adjustment is called professional judgment, and MSU Denver has a Professional Judgment Committee made up of full-time staff. Students can appeal to this committee regarding any unusual circumstances they can document which may affect their financial aid eligibility.
The Office of Financial Aid can make adjustments in some cases for loss of income or benefits, death, divorce or separation of spouse, unusually high medical bills or problems obtaining parental data due to family situation.
In some circumstances, you may be able to borrow additional loan funds to help cover the cost of uninsured and paid medical expenses that occur during the academic year.
To request that we evaluate your medical expenses and bills, you must complete a Medical Expenses Reevaluation Appeal Form available from our Forms Page. Documentation showing that you have paid the medical expenses will be required for us to adjust your income based on this appeal.
If you or your spouse experience a change in income and/or financial situation after you have completed the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), we may be able to make an adjustment to your financial aid eligibility.
To make an adjustment of this type, you must complete an Income Adjustment Appeal Form available from our Website. Please read the form carefully and be sure to provide all the necessary documentation. We will consider income adjustments for the following circumstances that occur after the FAFSA has been submitted to the federal processor:
Satisfactory Academic Progress Policies require all students receiving federal, state, and/or institutional aid to meet and maintain specific academic standards. All forms of financial aid are affected by this policy except for some externally funded scholarships and some private alternative loans.
Your academic record, all transfer credits and all credits attempted while you are not receiving financial aid are subject to the Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy. Your academic progress will be evaluated at the end of each semester in which you attend school, and it will be reviewed before any disbursement of financial aid funds for a new semester. Graduate-level financial aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy at MSU Denver is evaluated using three categories. Please note that, in order to remain enrolled in an academic program, students must meet academic standards specific to their degree programs, and these standards may not be tracked by the Office of Financial Aid.
Students who are not meeting the Satisfactory Academic Progress policy will not have their financial aid awards packaged until they have been approved on an appeal, even though they may have completed all other necessary requirements on their file.
You are considered to be in good standing for your program:
“SAP – Not Making Satisfactory Academic Progress”
You will be placed on SAP status and will not be eligible to receive financial aid at MSU Denver for one or more of the following reasons:
If you are placed on financial aid SAP, you have the right to submit a written appeal to our office. Appeals must be based on extenuating circumstances that prevent you from meeting the requirements of this policy. Extenuating circumstances can be defined as medical problems, a death in the immediate family, and/or extreme personal problems. Documentation of these circumstances must be submitted with the appeal. The appeal must also explain why the circumstances no longer exist and what you will do to ensure meeting the Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy in the future.
There have been changes in our SAP appeal process, we will no longer be accepting on-line appeals. You can submit an appeal by dropping it off, mailing it, or faxing it. Please visit our office or click on the SAP Appeal button below to submit your personal statement and supporting documentation.
The appeal will be reviewed by a financial aid counselor. You will be notified via email of the result of the appeal. If the appeal is denied, you may submit additional documentation in writing to the Professional Judgment Committee or pay for a semester on your own and re-appeal after earning a semester GPA of at least 3.0, in a graduate course for your Master’s program. If you have an appeal approved, your status will be updated to Probation and you will be expected to complete 100% of your attempted credits with at least a 3.0 semester GPA until you are meeting SAP requirements.
*Processing times will vary based on volume.