Understanding your Award Letter
Once the student has received an award letter, it needs to be reviewed carefully and make a decision of whether to accept or decline the awards. To accept or decline the award offer please go to https://assist.utpa.edu. This is what a typical 1st page of an award letter may look like. Below we will explain what is contained in each of the sections of the award letter.
*This letter is for demonstration purposes only; award packages vary by student depending on their eligibility
This section will show the awards that have been given for Fall and Spring semesters. Most awards are split equally between Fall and Spring unless the award is specifically for one term only, such as for exaple the State Top 10 Percent scholarship below:
It's important to look at the totals for the Fall and SPring semesters as unequal awards will mean student may have unequal financial aid disbursements for the appropriate terms.
The following section will inform students that fiancial aid offers are based on full-time enrollment (12 or more hours). Thus, if a student enrolls below 12 hours adjustments will be made to the financial aid award as the student may be eligible for lesser amounts.
This section explains how finanancial need was determined be taking the Cost of Attendance (an average cost estimate for attending a particular school) and subtracting the Expected Family Contribution (EFC that is generated from FAFSA information). Then it explains the components of the estimated cost of attendance for the student (also based on 12 hours of enrollment). Keep in mind that some of the components of Cost of Attendance are not necessarily paid up front. For example, a student living in their parent's home will not neccesarily pay for room and board.
On the back of the letter students will find important financial aid responsabilities that they are agreeing to by accepting the offer.
The next two sections will give students additional information regarding possible effects of dropping or withdrawing, information on disbursement of financial aid funds, hor to request additional funds and other important notices.
Finally, the last section will give you the student specific information and requirements for the specific awards that he/she has. It's extremetly important that students read these sections since some awards may require completion of a workshop or specific enrollments in order to keep these awards. Please note that there is not a message for the GM/EEOC Endowed Scholarship in this award letter. These scholarships are awarded much earlier than other financial aid and a separate award letter is sent for scholarships awarded through scholarship office. That award letter would contain the information regarding requirement for those scholarships.
Award Letter recap:
- > Award offers are always initially based on full-time enrollment, if student enrolls for less than full-time, the award package is highly likely to change. View sample here.
- > Awards must be accepted in a timely manner to prevent cancellation
- > Its important to read each of the messages related to the specific awards to see if there are additional requirements needed for that particular award
- > Complete additional specific award requirements in a timely manner to prevent cancellation