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The Students First Tuition Scholarship

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Purpose

Apply to ESUThe purpose of The Students First Tuition Scholarship is to recognize and reward qualified out-of-state freshmen, transfer and current ESU students for their high school and college performance.

Eligibility

To be eligible for The Students First Tuition Scholarship, a student must be offered admission to ESU and qualify as an out-of-state undergraduate student. Freshmen and transfer students are both eligible for the scholarship.

Entering freshmen who have completed a college preparatory program of study and present a cumulative high school grade point average (GPA) of 3.00 or above on a 4.00 scale will receive the Students First Tuition Scholarship.

College students transferring from a community college, a four year college or a university with twenty-four (24) college credits and a cumulative college grade point average (GPA) of 3.00 or above on a 4.00 scale will receive The Students First Tuition Scholarship.

Currently enrolled out-of-state ESU undergraduates who complete the 2016-2017 academic year successfully completing 30 or more college credits with a cumulative ESU GPA of 3.00 or above will receive The Students First Tuition Scholarship in the 2017-2018 academic year.

Students who receive The Students First Tuition Scholarship are not also eligible to receive the STEM, ACE or The Out-of-State Tuition Award during the same academic year.

Tuition Rate

The Students First Tuition Scholarship, currently valued at $7,492, has a four year value of $29,968.

The scholarship is applied in equal parts to the fall and spring semesters ($3,746 per semester in the current academic year).

In this current year, that represents a savings of $7,492.

The Students First Tuition Scholarship involves no cash transactions. The value of the award will be adjusted whenever the Pennsylvania resident tuition is changed.  Micro-scholarships earned from ESU on raise.me are included in these awards.

Scholarship Renewal Requirements

The Students First Tuition Scholarship is renewable for the duration of a student’s undergraduate study without regard to the selected college major. Students must maintain non-Pennsylvania resident undergraduate status in order to continue to receive the scholarship. Students who enroll may earn this scholarship by successfully completing 30 college credits in an academic year while maintaining an ESU cumulative GPA of 3.00 or above.

The Students First Tuition Scholarship Q & A:

How do I know if I qualify for The Students First Tuition Scholarship?

The purpose of this program is to recognize and reward qualified out-of-state freshmen and transfer undergraduate students for their high school and college performance.

Entering freshmen who are admitted to ESU and have completed a college preparatory program of study and present a cumulative high school grade point average (GPA) of 3.00 or above on a 4.00 scale will receive The Students First Tuition Scholarship beginning the fall 2017 semester.

College students transferring from a community college, a four year college or a university with twenty-four (24) college credits and a cumulative college grade point average (GPA) of 3.00 or above on a 4.00 scale will receive The Students First Tuition Scholarship beginning the fall 2016 semester.

Current out-of-state ESU undergraduate students who have a cumulative ESU GPA of 3.00 and who have successfully completed 30 credits by the completion of their 2016-2017 academic year will be eligible to receive The Students First Tuition Scholarship beginning the fall 2016 semester.

The Students First Tuition Scholarship is renewable for the duration of a student’s undergraduate study beginning the fall 2016 semester without regard to the selected college major as long as they meet the renewal criteria.

When will I be notified if I qualify for The Students First Tuition Scholarship?

New students will be notified by the Office of Admission by late January 2017. Current students will be notified by the Financial Aid Office after spring 2016 grades are posted and ESU GPA calculations are complete.

Will I be eligible for The Students First Tuition Scholarship for the duration of my ESU education?

Yes. The Students First Tuition Scholarship is applicable to your entire ESU education beginning the fall 2016 semester if you continue to meet the renewal criteria. However, if you have a break in attendance and return to ESU at a later time, it is possible you may not qualify for The Students First Tuition Scholarship in a future semester.

What if I have to withdraw for a semester, will I be eligible for The Students First Tuition Scholarship when I return?

If you withdraw from ESU or have a break in attendance, it is possible you will no longer meet the requirements for The Students First Tuition Scholarship upon return to ESU.

What are the renewal criteria for The Students First Tuition Scholarship?

In order to maintain The Students First Tuition Scholarship, you must successfully complete 30 college credits within the academic year and maintain a 3.00 cumulative ESU GPA by the end of the academic year. Students do have the opportunity to take summer classes at another institution or at ESU following the academic year to help boost their GPA and successful credit completion.

Students who need to improve their GPA in order to meet the GPA renewal requirements may need to attend summer school at ESU.

Is there a maximum amount of tuition savings with The Students First Tuition Scholarship?

No. There is no maximum limit of scholarship opportunity with The Students Frist Tuition Scholarship. However, scholarship opportunities are tied to achieving the renewal criteria discussed above.

What if I am in academic jeopardy? Am I still eligible for The Students First Tuition Scholarship?

No. You must maintain a cumulative ESU GPA of 3.00 while at ESU and successfully complete a minimum of 30 credits during each academic year in order to be eligible to receive The Students First Tuition Scholarship. An academic year includes fall, winter, and spring. The summer following the academic year may be used to make-up credits or to help boost your GPA to the cumulative ESU GPA of 3.00 if needed.

What does successful completion of 30 credits mean?

A grade of C or higher is required in a class in order for those course credits to be considered successfully completed.

For classes that are offered as pass/fail, you must receive a passing (P) letter grade in order for the credits to count toward successful completion.

Transfer courses that are articulated as a “T” letter grade will count toward courses that are successfully completed. However, only transfer courses taken within the relevant academic year count toward credits considered successfully completed.

What if I get an incomplete (I) grade or a withdraw (W or Z) grade?

Incomplete (I) and withdraw (W or Z) grades do not count toward successfully completed credits. You have until August 1st of each calendar year to resolve “I” grades in order for those grades to be included in the 30 credit academic year renewal requirements.

What if I have a change of grade?

Final determination of The Students First Tuition Scholarship eligibility will be made by August 1st of each academic year. If students do not meet the renewal eligibility criteria by August 1st they will be considered ineligible for the following academic year. You must submit a financial aid appeal for grade changes that are made after the August deadline.

Students who do not meet The Students First Tuition Scholarship renewal requirements will resume eligibility for the Out-of-State Tuition Award if they are undergraduate, out-of-state students.

If the spring semester ends and I have a cumulative ESU GPA of 3.00 or above, but I have not successfully completed 30 credits, may I make up the missing credits at another college over the summer and transfer the credits back to ESU?

Yes, by the end of the spring semester if you have an ESU GPA of 3.00 or above and you take a summer course at another college to make up the 30 successfully completed credits criteria, you will be able to maintain The Students First Tuition Scholarship for the next academic year. However, transfer credits from another institution must be successfully articulated as a “T” grade in order to count toward your 30 credits. Summer transfer credits can only be used toward the prior year’s credit count for The Students First Tuition Scholarship. You do not have the option of choosing which academic year the credits will be applied to in regards to The Students First Tuition Scholarship renewal requirements.

If I take a course that is Pass/Fail at another college and receive a passing “P” grade, will those credits count toward the required 30?

Typically, Pass/Fail courses with a grade of “P” are not considered transferrable college credit. Please consult with your advisor and the ESU Transfer Center regarding how such courses would be transferred back to ESU.

If the spring semester ends and my ESU cumulative undergraduate GPA is less than a 3.00 required for The Students First Tuition Scholarship renewal, what can I do?

In such a situation, you may be able to raise your cumulative ESU GPA to the required minimum of 3.00 by completed coursework during the ESU summer sessions. Please note transfer credits that are articulated as a “T” grade from another institution will not change your ESU GPA. In order to change your ESU GPA, you must take ESU summer classes or classes as a PASSHE visiting student where grades are transferred back to ESU as a grade. It is advisable you speak with your advisor to determine if such action would be appropriate.

Is there an appeal process if I have not been awarded The Students First Tuition Scholarship for the Fall semester?

Yes. You can submit a financial aid appeal by emailing scholarships@esu.edu.