Student Financial Services
How to Apply for Financial Aid
In order to receive financial aid, a graduate student must be matriculated and registered for at least 6 credits per semester. S/he must complete the Federal Application for Financial Aid Form (FAFSA) online at www.fafsa.ed.gov. If your Student Aid Report is selected for verification, you must also complete a verification form and submit signed copies of your current federal 1040 tax return. WCSU graduate students are eligible to apply for the Connecticut State University Grant Program, the Federal Family Educational Loan Program and the Federal Workstudy Program. Please contact the Office of Student Financial Services concerning application deadlines for these programs.
Satisfactory Academic Progress
Students receiving financial assistance under the federally supported *Title IV Programs/Veteran’s Benefits must comply with the following set of standards to be eligible for such assistance. Academic Progress is measured on an academic-year basis. Measurement is conducted at the close of the spring semester. An academic year extends from the beginning of the fall semester to the end of the spring semester.
A. Quality of academic performance:
Students must be matriculated and must maintain that quality of academic performance required to remain a matriculated graduate student at the university. A student is subject to dismissal from the graduate program at Western if his/her cumulative GPA is:
- Less than 3.0 with up to 18 completed semester hours
- Less than 3.0 with 24 completed semester hours if in the MBA program
Students who are on academic probation, unless otherwise ineligible, will be eligible to receive financial aid if they meet the “speed of completion” standard of the Academic Progress Policy outlined below.
B. Speed of completion of the graduate degree:
- For full-time graduate students: Satisfactory Academic Progress is defined as the successful completion of a minimum of 18 credit hours of academic work per academic year and 9 credit hours of academic work for those enrolling in one semester. Failed courses, audited courses, withdrawals, incompletes, repetitions and courses transferred from another institution prior to attendance at Western will not be counted toward the number of required credits.
Full-time graduate students may not receive financial assistance for more than four semesters of full-time attendance or until the student is certified for program completion by the university, whichever comes first. Matriculated M.B.A. students may not receive financial assistance for more than six semesters of full-time attendance or until the student is certified for program completion, whichever comes first.
- For part-time graduate students: Satisfactory Academic Progress is defined as the successful completion of the number of credits with which the student begins a semester. Failed courses, audited courses, withdrawals, incompletes, repetitions, and courses transferred from another institution prior to attendance at Western will not be counted toward the number of required credits.
Part-time graduate students will not be eligible for assistance for more than eight semesters of part-time attendance or until the student is certified for graduation by the university, whichever comes first.
Matriculated M.B.A. students may not receive financial assistance for more than 12 semesters of part-time attendance or until the student is certified for program completion, whichever comes first.
C. Alternatives for Completion of Academic Progress
- Graduate students who do not attain the above levels of Satisfactory Academic Progress may complete the needed hours in winter Intersession and Summer Sessions. The student needs to submit in writing to the Financial Aid Office that they have completed their credits.
- Upon presentation of evidence of medical emergencies, graduate students who have been denied financial assistance under this policy may appeal to the Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeals Committee.
* Title IV Programs are:
Federal College Work Study Program
Federal Family Educational Loan Program
Several graduate assistantships are available to matriculated graduate students. Application forms can be secured in the Office of the Division of Graduate Studies, Old Main 206.
Student employment is an integral part of university life for many students. Student labor benefits the university in almost every academic and administrative department on campus. Student employment may be related to a student’s major and/or interests and work schedules can be designed around a student’s academic schedule.
Western employs approximately 400 students during the academic year. The types of jobs available are as diverse as the students themselves. A complete list of job descriptions is available in the Office of Student Financial Services.
Students are paid bi-weekly, and the hourly rate is contingent on the difficulty of position and the experience of the student. The first paycheck is delayed for two weeks, as required by the state.
There are two major funding sources for the student labor force at Western Connecticut State University: the Federal College Work Study Program and institutional payroll.
The Federal College Work Study Program is a federally funded program based on financial need. Because the program is financially need-based, work experience is not the qualifying factor. In order to work under the Federal College Work Study Program, a student must meet the conditions listed under the Pell Grant section.
Western’s institutional payroll is not based on a student’s financial need. Students are employed based on the needs of each department, availability of funds, and the student’s experience in specific areas.
All federal and state funds are subject to federal and state regulations as mandated.
The Office of Student Financial Services assists veterans and National Guard in certifying educational benefits. Our office is located in Old Main 105 on the Midtown campus. The office hours are Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Any student who would like information about benefits earned through the armed services should report to Veterans Affairs/Office of Student Financial Services.
The Connecticut Department of Higher Education has approved WCSU’s educational programs for the training of veterans. Veterans may take advantage of their benefits under chapters 30, 32, 35 and 106.
Additionally, wives, widows and children of veterans seeking approval for educational benefits should apply to Veterans Affairs.
To explore available benefit programs, please go to: www.gibill.va.gov/GI_Bill_Info/benefits.htm.
If you served on active duty during a time of war or conflict, and are admitted as an IN-STATE resident, you may be eligible for a waiver of tuition.
A tuition waiver relieves the benefactors from the responsibility for payment of tuition. The tuition waiver does not apply to other costs and fees, such as student activity fees, insurance fees, and laboratory fees. There are two main categories of tuition waivers:
National Guard Tuition Waiver
National Guard members, who have received a certificate of eligibility from the adjutant general, and have been admitted to the university as full-time students and who have registered for classes, can submit the certificate to the Office of Student Financial Services, Old Main 105, for a waiver of tuition.
Connecticut State Tuition Waiver
Public Act 78-175 and Public Act 74-266 authorized the Board of Regents of the Connecticut State University System to waive the payment of tuition for veterans, or a dependent child * of a person classified as a prisoner of war or missing in action. The board also declares that qualified summer and part-time students (registered for less than 12 credits) are entitled to a waiver of 50 percent of tuition cost.
* Dependent children: Must be a dependent child of a person whom the armed forces declared to be missing in action or to have been a prisoner of war while serving in the armed forces after January 1, 1960.
To be eligible for this tuition waiver at Western Connecticut State University, a veteran must:
- Be honorably discharged or released under honorable conditions from active service in the U.S. Armed Forces (U.S. Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force and Coast Guard). National Guard members, activated under Title 10 of the United States Code, are also included.
- Have served at least 90 days active duty in time of war (see Periods of Service) except if separated from service earlier because of a federal Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) rated service connected disability; or the war, campaign or operation lasted less than 90 days and service was for the duration.
- Be accepted for admission at Western Connecticut State University.
- Reside in Connecticut at time of acceptance.
Periods of Service
Only those who served in the following manner may qualify:
- Active duty for at least 90 days during:
World War II –– December 7, 1941 to December 31, 1946
Korean Conflict –– June 27, 1950 to January 31, 1955
Vietnam Era –– February 28, 1961 to July 1, 1975
Persian Gulf War –– August 2, 1990 until an ending date prescribed by presidential proclamation or by law (no end date at this time).
All military war service subsequent to August 2, 1990 is covered, including but not limited to, Enduring Freedom, Noble Eagle, Iraqi Freedom, Somalia and Bosnia.
- Engaged in combat or in a combat-support role in:
Lebanon – July 1, 1958 to November 1, 1958 or September 29, 1982 to March 30, 1984
Operation Earnest Will – February 1, 1987 to July 23, 1987 (escort of Kuwaiti oil tankers flying U.S. Flag in the Persian Gulf)
Panama – December 20, 1989 to January 31, 1990
Reservists must be mobilized in time of war for other than training purposes.
Documents Required for Veterans’ Educational Benefits
- WCSU Veteran’s Registration Form;
- Criteria depends on the benefit for which you’re applying:
- Montgomery G.I. Bill (Chapter 30) candidates: Form DD-214.
- Montgomery G.I. Bill (Chapter 106) candidates: Form DD-22384.
- Post 9/11 (Chapter 33) candidates: Form DD-214.