The federal government mandates that students who withdraw from all classes may keep only aid earned up to the time of withdrawal. A student can complete an official withdrawal by contacting their Academic Advisor. The Academic Advisor will log the date on a withdrawal form which will act as the official document for withdrawal processes. If a student does not complete an official withdrawal, Ohio Christian University (OCU) identifies these students through attendance tracking. A student who misses two weeks of class is flagged as at-risk of withdrawing from the University. University personnel contacts the student to determine the student's intent. The result of this process determines the need for a Return to Title IV form.
Both official and unofficial withdrawal OCU processes ensure that any Title IV funds that need to be returned to the Department of Education are completed within 45 days from the date of the institution's determination that the student withdrew.
If the student has federal Title IV aid and fails to complete at least 60 percent of a term, the Financial Aid Office must determine how much of the student's aid, if any, must be returned to the federal aid programs based on the percent of the term the student completed. After the completion of the Return to Title IV calculation, any credit remaining on the account will be applied to any outstanding charges on the student account and the remaining credit will be remitted to the student no later than 45 days after the date of the institution's determination that the student withdrew. If the R2T4 calculation results in an amount to be returned that exceeds the school’s portion, OCU will return the amount to the federal programs on behalf of the student and the student must repay the funds to OCU.
A student may be eligible for a post-withdrawal disbursement (PWD) if, prior to withdrawing, the student earned more federal financial aid than was disbursed. OCU must make a PWD of grant funds as soon as possible, but no later than 45 days after the date of the school’s determination that the student withdrew If a student is eligible for a PWD for Title IV funds, it will be processed for the student and, if necessary, a refund will be issued within 14 days of the credit balance.
If the PWD includes loan funds, OCU must get the student’s permission before it can disburse the loan. Students may choose to decline some or all of the loan funds so that s/he does not incur additional debt. A notice will be provided to the student or parent within 30 days of the date of the school’s determination that a student has withdrawn, and the signed, original document must be returned to the University within 14 days.
Ohio Christian University may automatically use all or a portion of the post-withdrawal disbursement of grant funds for tuition and fees. However, the University needs the student’s permission to use the post-withdrawal grant disbursement for all other University charges. If the student does not give his/her permission, the student will be offered the funds. However, it may be in the student’s best interest to allow the University to keep the funds to reduce the student’s debt at the University.
It is also important to understand that accepting a post-withdrawal disbursement of student loan funds will increase a student’s overall student loan debt that must be repaid under the terms of Loan Agreement. Additionally, accepting the disbursement of grant funds will reduce the remaining amount of grant funds available to the student should the student continue his/her education at a later time.
The Return to Title IV calculation may identify Title IV funds that need to be returned to the Federal Government. These funds are returned to the Federal Government no later than 45 days after the date of the institution’s determination that the student withdrew. Once the student completes 60 percent of the term, the student is considered to have earned 100 percent of their aid. The term length for the Residential Undergraduate program is defined as the first day of classes through the last day of finals. The term length for Online Campus is defined as the first day a semester starts to the last day of the published end date of the last class. Please visit the course schedule to see the start and end day for each semester.
The federal regulations determine the order in which program funds are returned. Funds returned to the federal government are used to reimburse individual federal programs. Financial aid returned (by the University and/or the student/parent) is allocated, in the following order, up to the net amount disbursed from each source:
- Unsubsidized Federal Direct Stafford loans
- Subsidized Federal Direct Stafford loans
- Federal Direct PLUS loans
- Federal Pell Grants
- Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grants
- FSEOG Program aid
- TEACH grants
The Title IV aid that is required to be returned to the federal government may result in a balance due to the University. If the student is considering withdrawing from a class or a University program, they should contact the Financial Aid Office to determine the impact on their financial situation.