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Glendale, AZ Campus

Leave of Absence for Financial Aid Eligibility Policy and Procedure

Glendale, AZ Campus

Policy

  1. Students requesting a leave of absence while enrolled at Midwestern University must adhere to the policies and procedures established by the College Dean. In addition, students receiving federal financial aid must understand and follow federal Title IV and Title VII leave of absence regulations as stated in this policy, which may affect the amount of financial assistance received. As stipulated by federal financial aid regulations, any student, including a student receiving Title IV or Title VII assistance, shall be granted a leave of absence under the following conditions:
    • The student must request the leave of absence in writing to the program director, if applicable, with approval from the College Dean. The letter should clearly state the reason(s) for the requested leave of absence.
    • MWU may not charge the student tuition or any educational expenses during a long-term leave of absence (90 days or more). However, in order to continue coverage for long-term disability insurance and/or health and dental insurance, a student on an approved leave is obligated to pay an insurance premium. In addition, a student living on campus will be responsible for paying rent, utilities, and covered parking charges.
    • Students on an approved leave of absence are entitled to all the programs and benefits afforded by the student services fee; accordingly, the student will be charged quarterly.
    • A subsequent leave of absence may be granted for the same student due to an unforeseen circumstance such as military duty, jury duty or a circumstance covered under the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (FMLA).
    • Any additional leaves of absence requests may not exceed a total of 180 days in a 12-month period. This 12-month period begins with the first day of the first leave of absence.
    • A student on an approved leave of absence will retain in-school status.
    • There must be a reasonable expectation that a student will return from a leave of absence to continue enrollment at MWU.
  2. For purposes of administering federal financial aid, a student who is receiving Title IV or Title VII financial aid funds and is granted an approved leave of absence that does not meet the above guidelines will be considered to have withdrawn from MWU (for financial aid purposes only). Any student whose College Dean grants an approved leave of absence that exceeds 90 days must adhere to the leave of absence policy and reinstatement procedures established by the dean.
    • A subsequent leave of absence, not to exceed 30 days, may be granted for the same student due to an unforeseen circumstance such as a military duty, jury duty, or a circumstance covered under the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (FMLA).
    • A student on an approved leave of absence will retain in-school status.
  3. If the student who is receiving financial aid fails to return from the leave of absence at the end of the approved period, the student will be considered to have withdrawn from MWU (for financial aid purposes only) as of the first day in which the leave of absence was granted. The Office of Student Financial Services will have 45 days after the last day of an approved leave of absence to calculate a refund and return funds to the lender (30 days if withdrawal happens between quarters). For students who do not begin attendance at MWU, SFS must return the amount of unearned Title IV Funds no later than 30 days after the institution becomes aware that the student will not or has not begun attendance.  If a student who is not receiving financial aid is granted a leave of absence and fails to return at the end of the approved period, the disposition of such a case will be decided on an individual basis.
  4. Before final consideration is given to granting the requested leave of absence, a financial aid administrator will meet with the student and provide information regarding loan obligations, possible revisions in aid deferment options and consequences of not returning to MWU at the expiration of the leave of absence.
  5. A student on an approved leave of absence may receive health, dental and disability insurance coverage for the entire period of the leave, but must prepay the entire amount of the premiums during the leave. In addition a student may continue to live in on-campus housing for the duration of the leave, but must pay in advance each quarter. All outstanding balances must be paid in full prior to a student's return from a leave of absence.

Procedure

  1. Upon receiving written notification from the College Dean that a student has been granted an official leave of absence, the Office of Student Financial Services will take the following steps:
    • Recalculate the loan period and cost of attendance based on months of actual enrollment to determine the total amount of financial aid eligibility for the academic year and, if necessary, correct resulting over-awards.
    • Notify the student and lender(s) of the following:
      • Student's last date of attendance;
      • Beginning and ending dates of the approved leave of absence;
      • Revised cost of attendance and financial aid eligibility;
      • Revised loan period, if applicable;
      • Revised graduation date, if applicable; and
      • Revised student loan disbursement dates, if applicable.
  2. The Office of Student Financial Services will promptly return to the lender any loan disbursements received during the approved leave of absence and, if applicable, request that the disbursement be reissued upon the student's scheduled return to MWU.
  3. If the student fails to return at the end of the federally approved leave of absence, the student will be considered to have withdrawn from MWU (for financial aid purposes only) as of the first day in which the leave of absence was granted. The Office of Student Financial Services will perform the following functions:
    • loan return calculations; 
    • prompt return of federal funds or student loan funds to lender(s) within 45 days of receipt of notification of the student's failure to return from the approved leave of absence.
    • attempt to contact the student by telephone for a personal exit interview consultation.
    • If the student cannot be contacted by telephone, the financial aid administrator will mail exit interview materials containing information on borrower rights/responsibilities, loan repayment options, loan deferment options, consolidation, total loan indebtedness and consequences of default directly to the student.
    • The Director of Student Financial Services will notify the College Dean and the Program Director, if applicable, of the student's withdrawal status and the impact the withdrawal has on the student's financial aid award package.

  1. A student's withdrawal date is the student's last date of attendance at a documented academically related activity (exam, turning-in of assignment, academic counseling, advisement, etc.), or the midpoint of the period for a student who leaves without notifying the institution, or for students who officially withdraw, the date the student began the prescribed withdrawal process. 
  2. A student must provide written notification and documentation, if applicable, to the appropriate College Dean or Program Director, stating the reason for withdrawal from MWU. If approved, the College Dean will conditionally approve a withdrawal until all clearances are obtained.
  3. The student must receive clearance for withdrawal from the MWU departments on the http://online.midwestern.edu leave system within seven calendar days from the date of College Dean's conditional approval. This time frame will allow offices such as Student Financial Services and the Registrar to process the withdrawal, prepare the required financial aid exit, and calculate the return of unearned federal Title IV aid and all other aid, as appropriate.
  4. Upon submission of all completed documentation and adherence to all clearance procedures, the College Dean will provide an official letter of withdrawal to the student. If a student does not complete the online exit counseling requirement, the Registrar will withhold official academic transcripts.

In establishing a refund policy, MWU has instituted and adheres to all requirements included in the Federal Formula for Return of Title IV Funds as specified in Section 484B of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (as amended).   This policy will apply to Title IV and VII funding.  MWU's refund policy includes the following guidelines:

  1. Title IV funds include the following programs available at MWU, Direct Unsubsidized Stafford loans, Federal Perkins loans, Direct Graduate PLUS loans, and the Federal Work-Study (FWS) program. However, FWS monies awarded or earned by the student will always be excluded from the refund calculation.
  2. Title VII funds include Health Professions Student Loans (HPSL) and Primary Care Loans (PCL).
  3. Withdrawal On or Before the First Day of Classes of the Quarter for Which the Student Is Charged.
    • 100% of tuition, University housing, and all other fees will be credited. 
  4. Withdrawal After the First Day of Classes up to 60% of the Quarter for Which the Student is Charged.
    • Tuition and university housing charges will be prorated on a daily basis proportional to the number of days completed divided by the number of days in the payment period for which the student was enrolled.
    • University meal plans are credited based on the amount used during the quarter.
    • For students on a leave of absence, disability and health insurance fees paid to the University for the quarter will not be refunded. A student will be obligated to pay premiums through the end of the quarter.
    • For students on a leave of absence, no refund of student services fee will be made, as all campus services are still accessible by a student while on an approved leave of absence.
    • Title VII recipients will have future disbursements cancelled if the students is not enrolled full-time in subsequent quarters.
  5. Withdrawal After 60% of the Quarter for Which the Student is Charged
    • No refund of tuition or student services fee will be made.
    • University housing for the quarter will be credited according to the terms on the housing contract.
    • All credits on University meal plan costs will be based on the remaining balance in the quarter.
    • For students on a leave of absence, disability and health insurance fees paid to the University for the quarter will not be refunded. A student will be obligated to pay premiums through the end of the quarter.
  6. If a Subsequent Quarter(s) Has Been Prepaid
    • Tuition, student services fee, University housing, and health insurance fee, will be adjusted accordingly.
  7. Information technology fee - If a student withdraws before matriculation, or after the first day of classes through the 60% point of the first quarter only, the information technology fee will be adjusted accordingly provided that the equipment/software is returned in the same condition in which the student received it, as determined by the University Information Technology Service, and the student withdraws from the college.
  8. All refunds will be distributed in the following order as prescribed by federal law:
    • Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan
    • Federal Perkins Loan
    • Direct Graduate PLUS Loan
    • Other Title IV Aid Programs
    • Other Federal Sources of Aid including Title VII funding
    • Other state or private aid *
    • Institutional Aid (MWU Need-Based Scholarship, departmental loans and scholarships)**
    • The Student ***
    * MWU will refund scholarship monies in accordance with the sponsoring agency's policy.
    ** All refunds of institutional aid will be prorated based on the remaining weeks of the quarter. Subsequent quarters of awarded institutional funds will be cancelled; therefore, no refunds will be made.
    *** MWU will only refund monies to a student who does not owe a repayment of non-institutional funds or who does not have unpaid charges owed to the institution.
  9. Students who borrowed and received monies from the Federal Direct Loan Program (Stafford loans, Graduate PLUS loans); Perkins loans; Institutional (MWU) loans, Health Professions Student Loans, Primary Care loans and/or private loans will be legally responsible and obligated to repay in accordance with the terms and conditions outlined in the promissory note(s).
  10. Upon request by the student, examples of refund worksheets and calculations will be available for distribution in the Office of Student Financial Services.
  11. Students who feel that individual circumstances warrant exceptions from published policy may appeal the MWU Refund Policy. Student appeals need to be submitted to the Director of Student Financial Services.