MaconCatalog : Financial Information : Financial Assistance : Student Financial Aid Policies
Student Financial Aid Policies
Students are encouraged to visit the Financial Planning Office website at to learn more about financial aid policies and to email their financial planning counselor with any questions related to financial aid. Please review the policies listed below:
1. An applicant for financial assistance must be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen.
2. An applicant for financial assistance must be admitted as an eligible degree-seeking student to the University before financial assistance can be officially awarded. Provisionally accepted students are not eligible for financial aid.
3. In most instances, institutional financial assistance is granted only on the main undergraduate campus to students who enroll in a course load of at least twelve semester hours per term, although assistance from certain Federal and State programs may be available to those attending less than full-time. A student must be enrolled and attending class at the end of the term’s drop/add period to receive financial aid for the class. Since financial aid is based on enrollment, enrollment changes during the term may affect student financial aid award(s). Please contact your Financial Planning Counselor before making enrollment changes.
4. Financial assistance is generally awarded for two semesters (i.e., Fall and Spring) of the regular academic year. One-half of the annual financial assistance award will be paid each semester after the drop/add period, provided all the necessary paperwork is completed, except for work-study awards and Pell Grant. Based on year-round Pell, eligible students who attend summer at least half-time may be able to receive an additional Pell award for the summer semester. Work-study funds are paid directly to the student after the funds are earned. If a student chooses to use work-study funds to pay their balance, they must sign up for a payment plan through the Bursar’s Office. Students interested in the summer session(s) will have their files reviewed for any remaining loan, Pell, HOPE, Zell, and GTEG eligibility once they have enrolled for summer classes. The Undergraduate Mercer scholarship and grant funds are not available for summer terms.
5. Students receiving awards from sources other than Mercer University are required to advise the OSFP. A written statement that identifies the sponsor(s), the term(s) applicable, and the amount of the outside award(s) are required. Some adjustments to the financial aid originally awarded may be necessary. The University reduces any self-help (i.e. loan and work) awarded to the student before reducing any scholarships/grants. A student’s financial aid package cannot exceed COA.
6. No financial aid will be disbursed while a student is in the “verification” process. Verification is the process by which the Federal Government requires schools to verify the accuracy of the information reported by students and families on the FAFSA. Some students’ will be selected by the federal processor for verification, while other students FAFSA’s will be selected through specific FAFSA edits or by Mercer Financial Planning Office. If a student’s FAFSA is selected for verification, he/she will be notified by the OSFP of all documents required to be submitted to complete verification. In most cases, students are originally awarded based on information submitted on their original FAFSA. IMPORTANT: Should any information change based on verification of data, the student’s original financial aid package may be reduced.
7. Except for various University funds, such as academic, ROTC, and music scholarships, assistance is generally granted only in cases of financial need. The fact that a student receives an award one year in no way automatically renews the award for subsequent years. However, every effort is made to see that awards are renewed according to established University criteria. Applicants are reminded to submit a FAFSA annually by February 1st to be considered for all types of assistance.
8. Recipients of financial assistance who become the subject of disciplinary probation may forfeit financial aid during any period of probation.
9. This institution complies with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and does not discriminate against the handicapped or on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.
10. Academic scholarships and other University awards on the main undergraduate campus are made only to students who are enrolled full-time (minimum 12 semester hours per term after the drop/add period each semester). Following the initial semester award, University awards are typically renewed for seven additional semesters (fall and spring only), as long as the student continues to meet eligibility criteria. These awards must go towards tuition.
11. Financial assistance may be available for Mercer's Study Abroad programs. Students planning to study abroad must notify their Financial Planning Counselor at least 30 days in advance of their travel date to have their files reviewed.
12. Certain Veterans’ Benefits must be considered part of the student's financial aid package. It is the student's responsibility to advise the OSFP if any VA benefits are being (or will be) received.
13. To be considered for financial aid, the student must not be in default or owe a refund on Federal or State funds.
14. Students must be making progress towards the completion of their course of study according to the “Satisfactory Academic Progress Standards” in the following section to receive Federal and State funds. SAP will be checked at the end of each term.
15. Students who fail to earn a passing grade in all classes for a particular semester will be considered to have “unofficially withdrawn” from the University. If the institution cannot document that the student earned at least one grade for the semester, Federal and State financial aid will be returned to the original sources of funds, in accordance with Federal Title IV Refund Policies.
16. Presidential and other full-tuition scholarships cover full tuition and Facility and Technology (lab fees are excluded) MINUS all entitlements, e.g., Pell Grant, State Grant, HOPE Scholarship, and Zell Miller Award.
17. Any student receiving Mercer funds who leaves the University and re-enrolls the following academic year or later will be reviewed as a new, incoming transfer student for scholarship purposes. The student’s original Mercer scholarship is not automatically reinstated.