Students anticipate refund check arrival

The first round of refund checks will be sent out on Sept. 4Photo courtesy of: www.sxc.hu

Alanna Navin

For many students on campus, financial aid refund checks are a way to pay for other necessities, however, some issues can arise concerning refund check disbursement.

“The first refund checks will come out Wednesday, September fourth,” Kristie Sanders, assistant director of financial aid, said. “After that we will continue to run dispersal every Tuesday, and if the student’s financial aid is complete and ready for dispersal then that aid will pay out.”

The refund checks are not just limited to traditional students.

International students are eligible to get refund checks if they are under scholarship, Sanders, said.

Many students expect checks to be sent out on a Tuesday because of past procedures.

This semester’s first disbursement of checks are going out on Wednesday instead of Tuesday because of Labor Day, Elise Bogett, associate director of financial aid, said.

Refund checks can be used however the student wishes.

Generally students use their refund checks on books, rent, gas and other miscellaneous school costs, Sanders said.

Student verification, or the lack thereof, is often a hindrance in the disbursement process.

“Hopefully within the first two weeks students are verified in all of their classes,” Sanders said.

“That’s why we wait until 10 days after classes start to send out the first disbursement,” Bogett said.

However, students are at risk of returning their federal refund if they withdraw from classes or school altogether.

“When students withdraw from classes or from college altogether, they don’t get to take their financial aid refund money and run,” according to the howstuffworks.com website.

“Failure to complete courses may result in students actually owing financial aid money back to the institution since they didn’t technically earn the award,” according to the website.

On other occasions, students will come in with complaints about how much money their refund check does not contain, Sanders said.

For example, refund checks for HOPE scholarship students are awarded at the 15-hour rate and if a student is only attending 12 hours worth of classes, that student will not receive as much as a 15-hour student, Bogett and Sanders said.

Students receiving refunds from federal loans can also experience delays in disbursement due to incomplete pre-loan documents.

“For loans, if they haven’t done their promissory note or entrance loan counseling that will hold up the loans from paying,” Bogett said.

Students can view how much their refund is going to be by going to their WINGS account and setting up direct deposit, Sanders said.

Cindy Durden, administrative director of the office of student accounts, could not be reached for comment by press time.