Accelerated Semester Classes & How They Affect Financial Aid

Accelerated Semester Classes are classes that begin after the starting date of a fall or spring semester. These courses are less than 15 weeks (full-term). Students enrolled in Accelerated Semester Classes may have their financial aid delayed until classes begin. Dropping an Accelerated Semester class within the refund period, not attending, having a class cancelled or dropped for non-payment may result in a reduction of your financial aid.

Federal Pell Grants

The Pell eligibility date (sometimes referred to as the Pell recalculation date or census date) is a date in the semester when the Financial Aid Office is required by federal financial aid rules to evaluate a student’s Federal Pell Grant eligibility based on the student’s current enrollment status. If the Pell Grant awarded does not match with the student’s current enrollment status, the award must be adjusted. 

The Pell Recalculation Date for the fall and spring semesters is at the end of the refund period, which is normally the 21st day of the semester. Courses added after this date are not counted toward a student’s Pell Grant eligibility. Dropping a course after the refund period that was registered for by the Pell eligibility date and adding a different section of that same course (even exchange) will be considered as registered by the Pell Recalculation Date and, therefore, will be eligible for a Federal Pell Grant.

Students are able to finish the financial aid award process after the Pell Eligibility Date. However, only your registrations processed by this date are used to calculate your Pell Grant amount.

NYS Grants and Scholarships

For NYS awards a student who takes Accelerated Semester courses must be registered in the required credit load for the particular award and at least one course that meets for the full 15 weeks by the start of the semester. The student cannot add courses at a later date during the semester to achieve the required course load or enrollment status.

Certification for NYS awards cannot take place until the Accelerated Semester course begins.

Federal Direct Student Loans

A student must be enrolled in at least six degree-bearing credits at the time of disbursement of a federal loan.  A student that is enrolled in only Accelerated Semester classes may have their cost of attendance adjusted to reflect expenses related only to the period of time during which the student is in classes. For example, the room and board component will reflect costs only for the number of months of the late session, not for the entire fall semester. A reduction in the cost of attendance may affect both the loan amount and eligibility for a subsidized loan.

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