Coping with a financial aid suspension | 04.05.10

Some people believe that once they qualify for a federal student loan, the money automatically belongs to them. Not true. In reality, to be eligible to receive federal student loans, you must meet your school’s standards of satisfactory academic progress.

Generally speaking, the minimum grade point average for undergraduates to meet satisfactory academic progress is 2.0. If you fail to meet that minimum, you will become ineligible for your federal loans. Many scholarships and grants make this a requirement as well.

So what can you do once you are placed on suspension?

First, you may consider appealing your suspension to your financial aid office. THIS IS ONLY if you have a legitimate reason; neither the school, nor the federal government will have pity on you if you failed your classes because your boyfriend broke up with you. If you suffered, for example, from an extended illness, you may be able to appeal the suspension. Be prepared to show documentation, such as a doctor’s note.

Second, you have to find a way to cover the costs yourself. Because you are now ineligible for federal aid, you may consider a private student loan to cover some of the cost. Private loans do not have an academic requirement. Or, if you are in your first two years at a four-year school you could transfer to a community college where the costs are lower and you can get back on track.

Third, get your grades up! Improve your study habits and regularly visit your professors during office hours. Chances are, if you are only slightly below the minimum requirements, one good semester can get you right back where you need to be.


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3 Responses to “Coping with a financial aid suspension”

  1. cori says on January 6, 2013 at 5:03 am:

    I am suspended for my first time.
    I am a new yorker studying in puerto rico.
    Its called” inter-american university” but only english courses are taught in english.
    I admit, I haven’t put all my effort into my final a.p. english research course. But that is because I had about 5 other classes that are all strictly spanish. I would like to return to ny, but under decent educational status.
    Its my third year here, and I don’t want to quit.
    I am unemployed and live alone.
    the house was already paid for by my great-grandmother. But there are still bills to pay.
    I used to receive disability from the campus, but that was suspended as well.
    What is my best option?
    Could I perform my semester coming up the 22nd with just one class to make it cheapest possible? I tried looking for a job, but most places in my town ask for experience. And I don’t have a car. I usually walk on the highway hoping someone will be passing through the same destination. I honestly don’t think I will be able to leave puerto rico in a long time.
    what if I pull out a loan to buy a house and then rent it?

    Reply To This Comment
  2. james edward mckenzie says on December 31, 2011 at 9:50 pm:

    I have been placed on academic suspension for the spring semester of 2012 at State College of Florida due to the fact of having max hours at this particular college. My ending GPA is a 2.5 and I have a few dilemas. I was awarded a scholarship via John Captain for $2500 and I read that I could still be awarded a scholarship even after haven been suspended. Can I use this scholarship for the Spring 2012 semester at the State College of Floirda and what am I to do next? For I am a first generation student and I haven’t been to school in 30 thirty years. I am only four credits shy of receiving my associate degree. The last four credited courses that I have left to complete are very difficult. If you were in my shoes, what would you do?

    Reply To This Comment
    • Student Loan Guru says on January 6, 2012 at 3:31 pm:

      Whether or not you can use the scholarship depends on the rules of the provider. Financial aid suspensions are typically only for federal financial aid. Talk with your scholarship provider and your financial aid office to learn more about your options.

      Reply To This Comment

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