Disbursements and Adjustments
FINANCIAL AID DISBURSEMENTS
Before aid can be disbursed to student accounts each semester, the Office of Financial Aid is required to confirm students’ enrollment status and cost of attendance for the academic year or term. Additionally, students must establish eligibility, i.e., begin attendance in all classes within the first three weeks of the term.
Students selected for verification must submit all requested documents before aid can be disbursed. Documents are reviewed on a rolling basis and in the date order that they are received by this office.
First-time Federal Direct Stafford Loan borrowers at Kean University must complete an entrance counseling session and sign a Direct Loan Master Promissory Note (MPN) before loan funds can be disbursed. The Entrance and MPN can both be completed online by logging in at https://studentloans.gov.
Annual financial aid awards are generally disbursed in two payments during the fall and spring semesters. Students attending only one semester will receive one disbursement during that term of enrollment.
Disbursed aid is first applied toward outstanding balances from tuition and fees, room and board (if applicable), and other direct charges. Any overpayments from financial aid and/or cash payments are refunded by the Office of Student Accounting to the student by check or direct deposit, to be used for other educational expenses. The Office of Student Accounting will contact eligible students when a refund is available or a balance is due.
FINANCIAL AID ADJUSTMENTS
Awarded aid is subject to change, for several reasons:
Change in Enrollment Status. Financial aid is initially awarded based on full-time enrollment (12 or more credits per semester for undergraduates; 9 or more credits per semester for graduates). Dropping and/or adding courses during the registration period and the first week of class can change student enrollment status from full-time to part-time and this can affect aid eligibility.
- New Jersey State Aid such as Tuition Aid Grant requires full-time enrollment (12+ credits per semester).
- Federal Direct Loan borrowers must be enrolled at least half-time (6 or more credits per semester for undergraduates; 4.5 or more credits per semester for graduates).
- Federal Pell Grant is prorated for three-quarter time (9-11 credits per semester), half-time (6-8 credits per semester), and less-than-half-time (1-5 credits per semester) status.
- Garden State Guarantee Program requires full-time enrollment (minimum 12 credits per semester).
- Certain scholarships (Kean and external) require continuous full-time enrollment.
Third Week Attendance. The University adopted a policy to monitor the enrollment of students receiving financial aid. Students who are not attending a class for which they are registered during the first three weeks of the semester will have their aid reduced. Registration credits and tuition charges are adjusted to reflect non-attendance, and a Never Attended fee is assessed. For more information, click here.
Second Half-Term Courses. For students whose fulltime or halftime enrollment is based in part on registration for one or more Second Half-Term courses, federal and state aid disbursements are delayed until the second half of the semester. If a course(s) is dropped prior to the start of the second half-term, awards will be reduced or canceled accordingly.
Housing Status. Changes to on-campus housing status can affect a student’s annual or semester cost of attendance, which is higher for residents than commuters.
Repeated Coursework. For financial aid purposes, students are allowed to retake a previously passed course (any grade higher than F) one additional time and still maintain eligibility for funding. A student may also be eligible for financial aid when repeating failed courses. Note that the normal Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress policy will still apply in these cases.
If a student receives financial aid for a course that he or she is repeating and then withdraws from the course before the term ends, then that course is not counted as the one allowable retake for that course. Additionally, if an aid recipient student repeats a previously passed course but fails the second time, he or she cannot receive assistance for taking the course a third time.
Withdrawal from All Classes. The University is required by federal and state regulations to recalculate awards when a student withdraws, is dismissed, or takes a leave of absence before the end of the term. This includes unofficially withdrawn students, i.e., earned no passing grades at the end of a term. Withdrawn students are notified of their adjusted aid eligibility within 30 days of their withdrawal. For more information, click here.
Verification. The U.S. Department of Education and Kean University select particular applications for verification, which is a “validation” of certain information reported on the FAFSA by having the student submit the family’s tax return transcript(s) and other documents. Changes to FAFSA information can result in change(s) to previous awards, and affected students will be notified of any changes following our review. Awards for incoming freshman and transfer students will be “estimated" until the verification process is completed. Continuing students will not receive a financial aid award until all requested documents are submitted and verification has been completed. For more information, click here.
Additional Aid. Students’ resources (scholarships, grants, loans and work-study) cannot exceed their cost of attendance for the academic year or term. While the Office of Financial Aid initially awards students within their financial need, additional resources (such as an external scholarship) may be added later, resulting in an overaward of assistance. In such cases, total aid will be reduced to need in the following order: loans, work-study, scholarships, grants.
Request for Aid Decrease. A student may choose to decline or decrease a financial aid award (such as a loan or work-study) offered by Kean. Students can cancel or reduce aid by requesting a form from the Office of Financial Aid, and then complete and return the form. Offered loans can also be declined (but not decreased) online.
Any or all of the above situations can change semester or academic-year aid eligibility at any time prior to enrollment or after aid has already been disbursed. In either case, students may contact the Office of Financial Aid for assistance in reviewing options for financing their education. For the full Financial Aid site, click here.