2012 – 2013
Office of Graduate Studies and Extended Education
McKelvie Hall, 102 W. Rosedale Avenue
West Chester University
West Chester, PA 19383
Revised August 2012
Withdrawal/Enrollment Change and Aid
Student Consumer Rights and Responsibilities
Federal Perkins Loan Program
Direct Graduate PLUS Loan
Frederick Douglass Graduate Assistantships
Residence Hall Graduate Assistants
Institute for Women Graduate Grant
Federal Work Study
Scholarships and Awards
The purpose of financial aid at West Chester University is to provide financial assistance and counseling to students who can benefit from further education, but who cannot obtain it without such assistance. Financial assistance consists of gift aid in the form of scholarships or grants and self-help aid in the form of employment or loans. The main responsibility for meeting educational expenses rests with students. Financial aid is a supplement to family contributions and is to be used for educational expenses.
Eligibility for financial aid, with the exception of some assistantships and scholarships, is based on demonstrated financial need. Family income, assets, and family size influence the demonstrated financial need of the student.
All documents, correspondence, and conversations among the aid applicant, his or her family, and the Office of Financial Aid are confidential and entitled to the protection ordinarily arising from a counseling relationship.
In order to receive need-based financial aid, the student must
The submission of the information described above does not automatically entitle a student to receive financial aid. The Office of Financial Aid follows the regulations established by the federal government in awarding aid. Aid applicants are ranked according to unmet need (based on budget, federal and state grants, and expected family contribution), and available funds are offered to the neediest students first. Students must apply for financial aid each academic year.
Direct questions concerning financial aid to the Office of Financial Aid, 25 University Avenue, West Chester University, West Chester, PA 19383, 610-436-2627 or write to firstname.lastname@example.org. Office hours are Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; and Wednesday, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Students who officially withdraw or change their enrollment status may be entitled to a refund of certain fees, in accordance with University policy. (See section entitled "Fees and Expenses".) If the student has been awarded financial aid for the semester in which the withdrawal or enrollment change occurs, a portion of the refund will be returned to financial aid program funds. Financial aid refunds due to withdrawals or enrollment changes are processed in accordance with federal, state, and awarding agency guidelines and regulations. A student considering withdrawal or an enrollment status change should consult the Office of Financial Aid to determine the impact of that action on current and future financial aid.
You have the right to ask a school the following:
You have the responsibility to do the following:
The Federal Perkins Loan Program is a cooperative effort of the federal government and West Chester University which enables qualified students to secure educational loans under attractive conditions. Each borrower must do the following:
The combined total of undergraduate and graduate loans cannot exceed $60,000. Approval of loans depends on the student's financial need and the availability of loan funds. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid must be filed. For further information contact the director of financial aid.
Direct Loans are low-interest loans for students and parents to help pay for the cost of a student's education. The lender is the U.S. Department of Education rather than a bank or other financial institution.
To be eligible for a loan, a student must do the following:
The maximum loan per academic year for graduate students is $20,500 (unsubsidized) or the cost of the education. The total maximum indebtedness for all years of undergraduate and graduate study is $138,500 with no more than $65,500 subsidized.
Graduate students may borrow under the PLUS program up to their cost of attendance, minus other financial aid received. Each borrower must do the following:
A limited number of graduate assistantships are available to qualified, full-time and part-time graduate students. Interested students should consult their department chairperson or graduate coordinator and the Office of Graduate Studies to determine the availability of assistantships and their own eligibility. Notification for the first round of awards will be made by May 15. Many assistantships become available after this date or at the beginning of spring semester. To be eligible to receive a graduate assistantship, the student must satisfy the following requirements:
Assignments are made by the department in which the assistantship is located and may involve part-time undergraduate teaching, participation in research projects, or other professional duties under faculty supervision. Applications are available in the Office of Graduate Studies.
Full-time graduate assistants must be enrolled as full-time graduate students (9-15 credits). In return for 20 hours of assigned duties per week, full-time graduate assistants receive tuition remission for up to 12 credits (except for programs that require more than 12 credits per semester) and a stipend of $5,000 for the academic year. Half-time assistantships involving 10 hours per week of assignments also are available. For these, students enroll in six credits of course work and will receive tuition remission for those credits as well as a stipend of $2,500 for the academic year. Full-time graduate assistants are not allowed to hold other on-campus employment simultaneously. Part-time graduate assistants may work on-campus a maximum of 10 hours per week in addition to holding an assistantship.
For maximum consideration for support, applications for the fall semester should be submitted by April 15, although some departments occasionally consider assistantship applications at later dates. Assistantships also are offered by the Academic Programs and Services Division, Residence Life and Housing, the Academic Computing Center, and other offices. Please contact these offices, the adviser and/or graduate coordinator of your academic program, or the Office of Graduate Studies for additional information.
Maintaining graduate assistantships requires students to demonstrate both satisfactory performance in meeting assigned hours, dates, and responsibility, as well as good academic standing.
Students holding graduate assistantships who fail to maintain good academic standing (minimum GPA of 3.0) will have their assistantships revoked or will not have them renewed. This policy includes courses taken during summer sessions. Departments also may stipulate higher academic standards for maintaining assistantships. Full-time graduate assistantships are given for a maximum of four semesters. Half-time assistantships may be granted for up to six semesters.
These graduate assistantships are named after Frederick Douglass, a great nineteenth-century American abolitionist and writer and a frequent visitor to West Chester. Douglass gave his last public lecture at West Chester Normal School on February 1, 1895. Applicants with excellent academic credentials may apply for these assistantships. Efforts are made to appoint qualified candidates from historically underrepresented and underserved populations who have leadership experiences in their backgrounds or as part of their academic goals. This consideration is in keeping with the spirit of Douglass' life of public service and the University's mission to be a source of encouragement to the African American, Native American, Hispanic American, and Asian American communities. Students with Frederick Douglass graduate assistantships serve the Frederick Douglass Institute. These are full-time (20 hours per week) assistantships that provide a tuition waiver and $5,000 stipend for the academic year. The awards are made on an annual basis and are renewable for a second year. Students may use these assistantships to pursue a master's degree in one of the University's graduate programs. Interested individuals with excellent credentials should contact the Office of Graduate Studies and Extended Education or the Web site, www.wcupa.edu.
Opportunities to serve as residence hall graduate assistants are open to all full-time graduate students. Graduate assistants live in the University residence halls and assist the full-time, professional resident director in providing direction for the personal, social, and educational development of the resident students. Residence life graduate assistants are also supervisors for student workers and serve as University judicial hearing officers. These positions are full-time (25 hours a week) graduate assistantships that offer a stipend, tuition remission, and room and meal plan. Preference is given to students enrolled in the M.S. higher education counseling/student affairs program and to those with prior residence hall living experience. Applications may be made through the Office of Residence Life and Housing, Sykes Student Union, 610-436-3307.
The Institute for Women at West Chester University offers an annual grant of $750 to a woman graduate student who is accepted into a master's degree program at West Chester University. The award is based on high academic achievement; evidence of potential for contribution to the applicant's field of study; a record of leadership in school, community, church, or other setting; and evidence of service to others. Applications, including reference forms, are available from the Office of Graduate Studies and Extended Education. Completed materials must be submitted by March 15. Only students who have filed all required admission credentials and plan to enroll for a minimum of six graduate credits are eligible.
Graduate students may apply through the Office of Financial Aid for University or federal work study funds. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid also must be filed.
Applied Statistics Scholarship. This scholarship supports a graduate student in the applied statistics major who has shown exceptional academic achievement in his or her studies. Interested students should contact the director of the applied statistics program.
Michael Bannon Scholarship Fund. The fund supports a student in the M.S. in education degree program with at least 15 credit hours completed. Application is by invitation only. Students must be recommended by a department chairperson or Phi Delta Kappa member, and two additional WCU faculty members.
Communicative Disorders Graduate Scholarship. This award is given to a graduate student enrolled in SPP 501 (Foundations of Research) and is based on the quality of his or her research proposal. Interested students should contact the graduate coordinator in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders for more information.
Sharon H. Ennis Graduate Study Scholarship. This fund was established in memory of Dr. Sharon H. Ennis, associate vice president for information services at West Chester University in 1998. To be eligible, an applicant must be a female M.B.A. student with a concentration in technology and electronic commerce who strives to be versed in management, business, e-commerce, computer technology, the Internet, telecommunications, and related emerging technologies. In addition, an applicant must have a GPA of 3.0 or higher and have completed 12-15 credits at West Chester University. Consideration will be given to candidates with financial need. A committee comprised of M.B.A. faculty and chaired by the associate provost and dean of graduate studies will choose the recipient.
Sender Frejdowicz Scholarship. This scholarship supports a graduate student in the holocaust and genocide studies master's degree program who has demonstrated academic excellence. Interested students should contact the director of the holocaust and genocide studies program.
Cheryl Hamel Counseling Scholarship. This scholarship supports a full- or part-time graduate student pursing a master's degree in elementary or secondary school counseling with a GPA of at least 3.50. The application is available online; more information is available from the Department of Counselor Education.
Ian Hancock Graduate Scholarship in Holocaust and Genocide Studies. This award is given to a full-time graduate student enrolled in the holocaust and genocide studies master's degree program. An application and additional information are available from the director of the holocaust and genocide studies program.
Institute for Women Fund. This award supports a female graduate student enrolled in a master’s degree program who has high academic achievement, contributes to a field of study, and has a record of community, church, or other leadership. Applications are available from the Office of Graduate Studies and Extended Education.
Charles Mayo Scholarship. A financial grant is awarded yearly to an upperclass or graduate student in political science in memory of Charles Mayo, former president of West Chester University. Funded by contributions, the award is administered by faculty of the Department of Political Science. The value of the scholarship is approximately $200.
Irene Shur Holocaust and Genocide Studies Scholarship. This scholarship supports a graduate student in the holocaust and genocide studies master's degree program who has demonstrated academic excellence. Interested students should contact the director of the holocaust and genocide studies program.
Mustalish Graduate Scholarship in Holistic Health. This scholarship supports a graduate student studying for the master of public health degree, integrative health track. Interested students should contact the College of Health Sciences for more information.
Dr. Charles S. Swope Scholarship Foundation. The Memorial Scholarship Trust Foundation was established by Charles E. Swope and Richard M. Swope in memory of Dr. and Mrs. Charles S. Swope. Dr. Swope served as president of West Chester University for a quarter of a century. Applicants must be enrolled full time and be graduates of West Chester University. Scholarships are $1,000 each. Applications must be filed on or before April 9. Selection is made during May, with scholarships commencing in September.
Shirley Walters Memorial Research Scholarship. This scholarship supports a graduate student majoring in secondary education who is involved in scholarly research and has a GPA of at least 3.25. Interested students should contact the Department of Professional and Secondary Education for more information.
WCU Alumni Association Graduate Scholarship. This scholarship supports a graduate student with demonstrated financial need, meritorious academic achievement, and involvement in campus activities. Applications and additional information are available from the Office of Alumni Relations.
Greater West Chester Chamber of Commerce M.B.A./James Hamilton Scholarship. Established by the West Chester Chamber of Commerce, this scholarship is awarded to an M.B.A. student who has resided in the greater West Chester area for at least the previous 12 months. Candidates should have completed a minimum of nine graduate credits with a 3.0 GPA or better. A committee comprised of M.B.A. faculty will choose the recipient.