Students who need assistance with tuition and other costs related to their education may find help through one of several financial aid programs. Federal, state, and most institutional aid programs require the filing of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Types of aid include gift aid (grants), work study (part-time employment while enrolled), and loans (borrowed money that must be repaid with interest).
For full descriptions, disclosures, deadlines, and additional information regarding financial aid, please visit https://www.granite.edu/current-students/financial-aid/ or contact the Office of Financial Aid at 603.513.1392.
Federal Financial Aid Eligibility
To be eligible for federal financial aid, students must meet these general requirements:
- Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen; and
- Have a high school diploma or equivalent, or have been home- schooled in a setting approved by state law; and
- Not have or have resolved any drug conviction that occurred while receiving federal student aid; and
- Not owe a refund on a federal grant or be in default on a federal student loan; and
- Be accepted in an eligible degree program; and
- Be attending at least half-time (4 credits) during any term (except for Pell Grant eligibility); and
- Be making Satisfactory Academic Progress at each scheduled review; and
- Not be receiving federal or state financial aid from another institution for the same period of enrollment.
Advanced Book Funds
Federal aid (Pell, SEOG, Direct Stafford, Direct PLUS) recipients may be eligible to receive funds before the start of the term to cover the average cost for books and supplies ($150 per registered class) if, after direct charges have been paid, there is a remaining credit balance on the student account.
To be eligible, a student must be registered for classes and have aid ready to be disbursed at the time the Advanced Funds process runs 10-days prior to the term start. Generally, checks are mailed the Tuesday prior to the start of the term. Direct deposits are made the Wednesday prior to the start of the term.
Students who have a previous account balance are not eligible for Advanced Funds. Students are responsible for repayment of funds if they are dropped from any or all coursework. Students may opt out of this process by submitting the Opt Out of Advanced Funds form.
Federal Pell Grant
A Federal Pell Grant is awarded based on a student’s financial need and only awarded to undergraduate students who have not earned their first Bachelor’s Degree. The maximum Pell Grant Award is determined annually by the Federal Government. Students are eligible for Pell Grants up to the equivalent of 6 academic years of attempted course work.
Surviviors of Service Members
Students who have a Pell Grant eligible expected family contribution (EFC) will be treated as a student who has a zero EFC and will be awarded the maximum Federal Pell Grant Scheduled Award based on the following criteria:
- Parent or guardian died as a result of military service in Iraq or Afghanistan after September 11, 2001, and;
- Student was less than 24 years of age or enrolled in a postsecondary program at the time of the parent or guardian’s death.
These students are identified through the Department of Defense match conducted through the FAFSA.
Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant
A student who is not eligible for a Pell Grant but whose parent or guardian was a member of the U.S. Armed Forces and died as a result of military service performed in Iraq or Afghanistan after September 11, 2001 may be eligible to receive the Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant. Additional student eligibility requires the student to have been under 24 years old or enrolled in college at least half-time at the time of the parent or guardian’s death.
Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)
This grant is awarded to undergraduate students who have exceptional financial need, with priority given to Federal Pell grant recipients with the lowest EFC. Awards are based on availability from an annual allocation and are not guaranteed to every eligible student.
Federal Work Study Program
Federal work study encourages part-time employment related to a student’s course of study and/or career interests while pursuing a post-secondary education. Students must demonstrate financial need from the FAFSA to be eligible for this program. Awards are based on availability from an annual allocation and are not guaranteed to every eligible student.
Federal Direct Loan Programs
Direct loans are low-interest loans for students and/or parents to help pay for the cost of an education. The lender is the U.S. Department of Education and offers the following types of loans:
Subsidized: For students with demonstrated financial need, as determined by the FAFSA. No interest is charged while a student is in school at least half-time. Available to eligible students enrolled in an undergraduate or eligible post-baccalaureate program.
Unsubsidized: Loans that are not based on financial need. Interest is charged during all periods, even during the time a student is in school. Available to eligible students enrolled in an undergraduate, eligible post-baccalaureate or graduate program.
Parent PLUS: Loans that are not based on financial need which help pay for educational expenses up to the cost of attendance minus all other financial assistance. Interest is charged during all periods, even during the time a student is in school. To be eligible, the borrower cannot have an adverse credit history and the student must have a valid FAFSA on file. Available to eligible parents of dependent students enrolled in undergraduate and eligible post- baccalaureate programs.
Federal Financial Aid Penalties for Drug Convictions
The Higher Education Act states that a federal or state drug conviction can disqualify a student for federal financial aid. Without a valid FAFSA for federal financial aid, students are also ineligible for state aid and most institutional aid programs. In accordance with an HEOA provision, a student whose eligibility has been suspended due to a drug conviction is allowed to resume eligibility if the student successfully passes two unannounced drug tests conducted by a qualified drug rehabilitation program.
National Guard Tuition Waiver
This program is available to Granite State College degree students serving in the New Hampshire Air and Army National Guard. NH National Guard Waivers are for tuition costs only on a space available basis, which means that a seat is available in a course without excluding paying students.
Other Sources of Aid
Aid may be available from local sources, including local banks with education assistance trusts, community and civic groups, Veterans Administration, NH Job Training Council, Vocational Rehabilitation, and employer tuition reimbursement.
Unique Annual Grant
The Unique program provides increased, equal access and choice for deserving, high-need New Hampshire residents seeking the benefits of a NH postsecondary education. For more information please go to https://www.granite.edu/tuition-aid/types-of-aid/scholarships-and-grants/.
Vermont State Grants
State grants may be available to residents from Vermont for the College’s students. Information from the FAFSA is sent to the state to determine eligibility.
Oshner Reentry Scholarship Endowment
The Bernard Osher Foundation, headquartered in San Francisco, supports higher education and the arts and provides scholarships to selected institutions nationally. Learn more about the Osher Foundation at: www.osherfoundation.org.
The Osher Reentry Scholarship Endowment Fund, sponsored by the Bernard Osher Foundation, is designed to provide tuition assistance to eligible “reentry” students who are pursuing their first Bachelor’s Degree. A “reentry student” is a person who has experienced a cumulative gap of five or more years in their formal education and has not completed the requirements for a Bachelor’s Degree.
The College will select at least 25 recipients per year and awards may not exceed $5,000 per recipient or $50,000 total per year. Preference will be given to newly-matriculated students or returning award recipients. To be eligible, the student must:
- Have experienced a cumulative gap in their education of five years or more.
- Be an undergraduate student pursuing his/her first baccalaureate degree.
- Ideally be between the ages of 25-50 and anticipate participation in the work force for a significant period of time.
- Demonstrate financial need not necessarily identified on the FAFSA.
- Not enrolled exclusively in online classes.
- Show academic promise and commitment to obtaining their undergraduate degree.
- Must submit application, essay and references during the open application period.
Child Development Bureau Early Childhood Tuition Assistance Grant
For individuals working in licensed and licensed-exempt New Hampshire child care programs, preschools, or family child care, grants are available for enrollment in early childhood courses. This tuition assistance program is offered by the Child Development Bureau, Division of Child, Youth and Families, Department of Health and Human Services. Applications are available online at: https://www.granite.edu/tuition-aid/types-of-aid/scholarships-and-grants/.
New Hampshire Charitable Foundation
New Hampshire residents pursuing undergraduate or graduate study at approved institutions of post-secondary education are eligible to apply for grants and scholarships from this foundation. For more information, please visit www.nhcf.org.
Veterans are encouraged to take advantage of the benefits provided by the GI Bill®. All of the College’s degree programs are approved for veteran’s benefits.
If you are a beneficiary of Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment or the GI Bill® and provided a valid VA Form 28-1905, you may attend the course(s) without penalty while the VA processes payment to Granite State College.
For more information, please contact:
Department of Veterans Affairs
VA Vocational Rehabilitation
Granite State College Veterans Point of Contact:
Granite State College Military Outreach and Support Specialist:
Granite State College School Certifying Official
Note: GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government Web site at https://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill.
Vocational Rehabilitation Programs
Every state operates a vocational rehabilitation program to assist people with a variety of disabilities to return to productive activity. In certain cases, a vocational rehabilitation agency will assist disabled students to meet their college expenses. Students should contact their local agency for more information.
Online Scholarship Search Engines
Online scholarship search engines may be utilized to assist students in finding scholarships that reduce their educational costs. Trusted examples include:
- College Board Scholarship Search, and
- Peterson’s Scholarship Search.
Monthly Payment Option
The College offers a payment plan option at a nominal cost. This interest-free plan allows payments in monthly installments for a single term or multiple terms within the same academic year. The plan is administered for the College by Tuition Management System (TMS), now known as Nelnet Campus Commerce. For further information, contact TMS at 800-722-4867 or granite.afford.com.
Private (Alternative) Loans
Private loans, also known as alternative loans, are non-federal student loans that may be needed by students to fund and/or supplement the cost of their education. All private loans are credit- based and have interest rates that may be fixed or variable (meaning there is no limit to the amount the rate can increase). Students may borrow up to the cost of attendance less any financial aid and are required to complete a self-certification form. Private Loans should be used as a last resort to fund one’s education.
The Office of Financial Aid strongly encourages the use of all federal, state and institutional aid programs identified through the filing of the FAFSA before applying for any private loan option.
Employer reimbursement can help offset the cost of an undergraduate education. Check with your Human Resources Department about this option.
Rights and Responsibilities
Federal, state, and institutional student financial aid is a privilege, which creates both rights and responsibilities:
- Know and understand the authorized educational expenses involved in the cost of attendance and that aid awards are only used for these expenses while enrolled.
- Be informed about the financial aid application process/ procedures and respond promptly to all documentation and information requests.
- Understand how financial need is determined, how outside resources may affect eligibility, and report all resources received.
- Understand the award and the guidelines of the aid programs involved.
- Know and understand the refund policies pertaining to dropping and the return of federal aid as a result of withdrawing from coursework; as well as student responsibility for repayment of any returned funds.
- Understand the requirements for Satisfactory Academic Progress to receive federal financial aid and the responsibility to maintain SAP standards.
- Understand that financial aid records are confidential and maintained in accordance to the Federal Family Educational Right and Privacy Act (FERPA).
- Maintain copies of all forms and agreements signed.
- Recognize that the student and his/her family are primarily responsible for educational costs.
- Notify the Office of Financial Aid of any changes in anticipated enrollment, any drug conviction or incarceration, since it may affect eligibility.
- Satisfactorily perform and complete work assignments accepted through the federal work study program.
Financial Aid Application Process
- Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at www.studentaid.gov. Receive an estimated financial aid award within 2 weeks. Awards will be issued beginning early May.
- Complete the admissions application. Once processed, this will give access to move forward with financial aid: https://www.granite.edu/become-a-student/apply-now/.
- Requirements will vary from student to student and may include submitting additional documentation. Students may also be subject to additional verification procedures, and the award may change as a result of the verification process, so check for updates and respond to any changes. All additional documents must be submitted before any financial aid can be finalized.
- Complete Federal Student Loan Requirements, if applicable. For all new Federal Student Loan Borrowers, complete the following steps at www.studentaid.gov in order to begin classes:
- Stafford Loan Entrance Counseling: Learn the rights and responsibilities associated with borrowing Federal Direct Loan funds.
- Master Promissory Note (MPN) with Direct Lending: a legal document which explains the terms and conditions of the loan, as well as repayment responsibilities.
- Financial aid notification. Our goal is to award financial aid to meet the tuition, fees, and book expenses for 8 credits per term for those who are eligible. We assume acceptance of all loans and grants as offered, unless informed in writing otherwise. Awards will be adjusted down for actual enrollment at the time of disbursement unless we are notified otherwise via the Award Revision Request. Please complete an Award Revision Request form to: decline all or a portion of loans, request aid for more than 8 credits, or attend fewer terms or credits that are reflected on the award. Please allow sufficient time for us to process these change requests. Typically, changes are completed in 3-5 business days. During peak times, the three weeks prior to each term start, processing times may be longer.
Loan Proration for Students Nearing Degree Completion
Students with less than 24 credits remaining to complete their current degree program and who are not attending the full academic year (Fall, Winter, and Spring), may have their federal loan eligibility prorated based on federal regulations. The Office of Financial Aid will notify students nearing the completion of their programs and require them to submit the Financial Aid Degree Completion Form to determine eligibility. This process must be completed before a financial aid award can be determined.
Federal regulations require verification to be completed for some applicants and they may be selected by the U.S. Department of Education or by the College. The purpose of verification is to maintain the integrity of student aid programs by verifying the information provided by students and parents on financial aid applications.
A student should complete verification as soon as possible after notification but must complete the process prior to the last day they are enrolled at least half-time, unless the student selected is a Pell Grant recipient. For such students, the verification process must be completed no later than 120 days after the last day of at least half-time enrollment or by September 1.
Application Processing Timeline
Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. Financial aid application processing may take up to fourteen days once the FAFSA results are received. Apply as early as possible to avoid delays. Verification documents must be completed prior to the last day they are enrolled at least half-time, unless the student selected is a Pell Grant recipient. For such students, the verification process must be completed no later than 120 days after the last day of at least half-time enrollment or by September 1. Students must reapply for financial aid each academic year.
Federal, state, and most institutional aid programs are awarded based on financial need except for the Direct Unsubsidized Loan and the Direct Parent PLUS Loan, which are categorized as non- need based aid. Financial Need is the difference between the Cost of Attendance and the Expected Family Contribution added with external Educational Resources.
Cost of Attendance (COA), also known as the student’s budget, is an estimate of educational and related expenses incurred during a period of enrollment.
The Expected Family Contribution (EFC) is a measure of the family’s financial strength and resources available to assist with the cost of education, which is calculated through the FAFSA.
Any anticipated Educational Resource, paid directly to the students or to the College on the student’s behalf, is the student’s legal responsibility to report, and may affect financial aid eligibility. Examples include, but are not limited to, Vocational Rehabilitation, Veterans Administration, and employer tuition reimbursement.
The College does recognize that a student and/or family’s true circumstances may not be accurately portrayed at the time they file their FAFSA. Special circumstances may include, but are not limited to loss of job, divorce, and medical expenses above the average allowance. A special circumstance application may require completion of the verification process, supporting documentation, and providing further information upon request.
Code of Conduct
The staff of the Office of Financial Aid and designated agents of the College are expected to always maintain exemplary standards of professional conduct and to follow this code of conduct outlined by the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA).
1. No action will be taken by financial aid staff that is for their personal benefit or could be perceived to be a conflict of interest.
- Employees within the financial aid office will not award aid to themselves or their immediate family members. Staff will reserve this task to an institutionally designated person, to avoid the appearance of a conflict of interest.
- If a preferred lender list is provided, it will be compiled without prejudice and for the sole benefit of the students attending the institution. The information included about lenders and loan terms will be transparent, complete, and accurate. The complete process through which preferred lenders are selected will be fully and publicly disclosed. Borrowers will not be auto-assigned to any particular lender.
- A borrower's choice of a lender will not be denied, impeded, or unnecessarily delayed by the institution, even if that lender is not included on the institution's preferred lender list.
- No amount of cash, gift, or benefit in excess of a de minimis amount shall be accepted by a financial aid staff member from any financial aid applicant (or his/her family), or from any entity doing business with or seeking to do business with the institution (including service on advisory committees or boards beyond reimbursement for reasonable expenses directly associated with such service).
2. Information provided by the financial aid office is accurate, unbiased, and does not reflect preference arising from actual or potential personal gain.
3. Institutional financial aid offers and/or other institutionally provided materials shall include the following:
- A breakdown of individual components of the institution's Cost of Attendance, designating all potential billable charges.
- Clear identification of each aid being offered, indicating type of aid, i.e. gift aid (grant, scholarship), work, or loan.
- Standard terminology and definitions, using NASFAA's glossary of terms.
- Renewal requirements for each aid being offered.
4. All required consumer information is displayed in a prominent location on the institutional web site(s) and in any printed materials, easily identified and found, and labeled as "Consumer Information."
5. Financial aid professionals will disclose to their institution any involvement, interest in, or potential conflict of interest with any entity with which the institution has a business relationship.
The Student Services calendar includes important dates such as financial aid deadlines, disbursement of funds and credit balance issue dates. It applies to standard term courses. The calendar can be found at https://www.granite.edu/become-a-student/calendars/academic-calendar/.
September 17 is designated as Constitution Day for all schools eligible for Title IV funding. Granite State College annually celebrates Constitution Day to promote an understanding and appreciation of the U.S. Constitution.
Financial Aid Eligibility for Repeated Coursework
Students are eligible to use federal financial aid to pay to retake a previously passed course for which they earned credit only one time in an attempt to better their grade. Students are eligible to use federal financial aid to retake a failed course repeatedly (please note that eligibility based on Satisfactory Academic Progress standards still apply). However, if a student earns credit for a course and then retakes the course but fails in the second attempt, the student will not be able to receive aid to retake that course again.
Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) to Receive Financial Aid
All Granite State students are required to achieve minimum SAP standards to receive financial aid. Undergraduate students must maintain a cumulative GPA of at least 2.0, a 67% completion rate, and be able to complete their program within 150% of the published length.
Qualitative Measure (GPA)
The qualitative measure requires a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0.
Quantitative Measure (Pace)
The quantitative measure requires a completion rate of at least 67% for all attempted credits. Credit hours attempted include completed credits, incompletes, withdrawals, repeated for failed classes, as well as transfer credits. Also included are all credits attempted at Granite State College as an undergraduate student, regardless of change of major.
Maximum Timeframe (in credits)
The timeframe for degree completion is limited by federal regulations to 150% of the published credit length of the program. Associate Degree programs have a published length of 60 credits. The maximum timeframe for completion of an Associate Degree is 90 credits. Bachelor’s Degree programs are 120 credits in length. The maximum timeframe for completion of a Bachelor’s Degree is 180 credits.
The maximum number of credits attempted includes transfer credits and all credits attempted while enrolled at Granite State College as an undergraduate student. If due to withdrawals, failed courses, change in degree program, etc., it becomes mathematically impossible for the student to complete his/her program within the maximum number of attempted credits for the program, then he/she will no longer be eligible for financial aid for any future terms.
Definitions of coursework and how they affect various categories when reviewing financial aid SAP.
Credits Attempted But Not Completed
The following count as credits attempted, but not considered as credits successfully completed. “F” and “AF” grades are counted in the GPA calculation.
- “F” failing grade
- “AF” administrative failure
- “IC” incomplete
- “W” withdrawal
Courses that are dropped during the official add/drop period are not included in the evaluation of SAP.
Audited coursework receives no credit and is not counted in the evaluation of SAP.
Remedial/Developmental coursework receives no credit and is not counted in the evaluation of SAP.
Courses that are repeated will count as hours attempted and completed if the student receives a passing grade; however, only the last grade earned is calculated in the GPA.
Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) Credits
Prior Learning Assessment credits are brought in as transfer credits since credits are not paid for but the evaluation process is. PLAs are applicable as degree credits that lead toward degree completion. Therefore, PLAs are counted as credits attempted and completed.
Pass/Fail coursework is not calculated in the cumulative GPA, but will be counted as credits attempted. If the coursework is passed, the credits will also be counted as completed.
Transfer credits that are applicable to the student’s degree program are counted as credits attempted and completed.
Coursework at another institution under a consortium agreement, while a Granite State College student is enrolled in an eligible program, will be counted in the GPA and as credits attempted (and completed if a grade other than the equivalent of “F” or “AF” is issued).
A subsequent major, within the same program level, includes all attempted credits taken towards the previous degree program(s). It includes credits attempted, completed, and GPA.
SAP Review Timeframe
Granite State College will review SAP eligibility on an annual basis at the end of the each Spring payment period for undergraduate programs.
Financial Aid Supsension
Students who do not meet the minimum SAP standards during the annual review will be placed on financial aid suspension beginning with the summer term. Financial aid suspended students are not eligible for financial aid which will result in the loss of all federal, state and institutional aid, including grants, scholarships, loans, and work study.
Granite State College will allow an appeal process for students in suspended status for receipt of aid. A student whose eligibility is suspended may request an appeal if he/she feels that extenuating circumstances existed that affected the student’s ability to achieve the minimum SAP qualitative (GPA) and/or quantitative standards (completion rate). A student cannot appeal a financial aid suspension if he/she has reached or will reach the maximum timeframe before program completion.
An extenuating circumstance must exist and be supported by additional documentation in order to file an appeal to regain financial aid eligibility. An extenuating circumstance may include:
- Death of an immediate family member, or
- Other extenuating circumstance.
Extenuating circumstances do not include a lack of dedication to his/her studies, not understanding the impact of withdrawals, etc.
All submitted documentation of extenuating circumstances is confidential and only used to verify and support a student’s appeal. All documentation will be filed in the student’s financial aid records.
Granite State College students may appeal a SAP suspension for reentry in the Summer, Fall, Winter, and Spring terms. All appeals will include an academic plan that must demonstrate that the minimum SAP standards will be achieved by the next scheduled review. Official deadlines will be published annually on the aid-year specific Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeal Form.
All SAP appeals will be reviewed by the SAP Appeal Committee, which is made up of representatives from the Office of Financial Aid and the Registrar’s Office. The Committee will determine a student’s eligibility or ineligibility for continued aid. Any incomplete appeals will not be reviewed. As a result the student will not be eligible for aid. Students must have a current FAFSA on file, resolve any defaulted federal student loans, and pay any outstanding balance due to Granite State before an appeal will be considered for review.
An appeal may only be approved if there is sufficient documentation of extenuating circumstance, an explicit statement of what has changed, and an academic plan that demonstrates the student will be able to achieve the requirements of SAP within the next four consecutive terms. Decisions for academic plans may involve, but are not limited to, a reduced course load, specific courses, a required GPA by term, etc. Academic plans cannot include more than 8 credits per term. The student and the advisor will be informed in writing of the decision, any additional requirements, and the consequences of failing to follow the academic plan.
Approved students will be required to achieve at least a “C” in each course while completing 100% of the credits in the academic plan. No incompletes, failures, or withdrawals will be accepted. Any higher expectations will be communicated to the student in writing. If the student does not meet or exceed this requirement their aid will again be suspended the following term.
If a student’s appeal is approved, but the student does not attend the subsequent payment period, the student’s aid will be once again suspended and must submit a revised academic plan for approval.
Financial Aid Probation
A student who is approved through the appeal process will be placed on financial aid probation for their first term back.
Students who achieve the minimum SAP standards after the probation term will have their eligibility reinstated and will not be required to continue to follow the established academic plan, however following the plan is recommended. The student will be reviewed again for SAP at the next scheduled annual review.
If the student is unable to achieve the minimum SAP standards after probation, the student will be placed on his/her approved academic plan and continue to receive aid if the student achieves the minimum grade required in each course while completing 100% of the credits attempted during probation. Otherwise, the student’s aid will be suspended.
A student who completes probation and did not achieve the minimum SAP standards, will follow the academic plan created and approved by his/her Academic Advisor and approved by the Committee. Progress will be reviewed on a term by term basis in accordance with the academic plan. Students who fail to meet the requirements of the academic plan will have their aid suspended.
Number of Appeals
Students that are reviewed annually are allowed to appeal at two different times during their academic career at Granite State College. However, students cannot appeal in successive aid years.
Students who fail to meet the requirements of an approved appeal will have their aid suspended again. The student must, on their own, work to achieve the standard to regain eligibility. If the student then, after regaining eligibility, is suspended again, that student may appeal once more.
If an appeal is denied, the student may not submit another appeal. The student must, on their own, work to achieve the standard to regain eligibility. If the student then, after regaining eligibility, is suspended again, that student may appeal once more.
Re-Establishing Eligibility Without an Appeal
Once suspended students meet SAP requirements, they may regain aid eligibility during the next annual scheduled review.
If students wish to regain aid eligibility sooner they may submit the Request for Reinstatement of Suspended Aid form. This form is used to alert the Office of Financial Aid that the student now meets SAP requirements and wishes to have their eligibility reinstated. The student will be placed on Probation for the subsequent payment period and must continue to meet SAP standards at the end of that payment period. If they do not meet the standards, they will once again be suspended.