Withdrawing from South Dakota Mines and Refund Calculations

Due to circumstances that may or may not be within your control, it may become necessary to withdraw from all classes prior to the end of a semester of attendance. Students should review the SATISFACTORY ACADEMIC PROGRESS and Federal Student Aid information to determine the affect withdrawing may have on meeting the Pace of Completion (Quantitative measure) requirement for future Federal Aid eligibility.  Students are advised to review the South Dakota Board of Regents Policy Number 5:7 regarding refunds.

Withdrawal Process

The Registrar’s Office (O'Harra Administration Building Main Floor, Room 201) must be notified if a student decides to withdraw from all courses at the University. The preferred notification method is in person, but may be made in writing, by phone (605.394.2400), by e-mail (Registrar@sdsmt.edu) or by dropping all classes via Self-Service (if the student is not enrolled for an upcoming semester they will be able to drop all but one class; they will have to contact the Registrar's Office to drop the final class). The student’s withdrawal date is the date the student began the withdrawal process or officially notified the University of intent to withdraw by contacting the Registrar’s Office.  In the event the student begins the withdrawal process, but then decides to remain in school, the student must notify the Office of the Registrar immediately. If the student changes their mind and decides to complete the withdrawal process, the withdrawal date becomes the date in which first notification to the Registrar's Office of the intent to withdraw was made. However, if it can be documented from course instructors that the student had engaged in academically related activities since the first notification of intent to withdraw, the later date will be considered the date of withdrawal.

For students who fail to officially withdraw, the institution may administratively withdraw the student. The withdraw date for an administrative withdrawal will be determined at the University’s option to be 1) the midpoint of the enrollment period, or 2) the last documented date of attendance at an academically related event, or 3) the date an event occurred which prevented the student from officially withdrawing from the institution. Such events include illness, grievous personal loss, or other such circumstances beyond the student’s control.

To be considered ‘withdrawn’ a student must have ceased enrollment in all classes at all SD Regental Universities (BHSU, DSU, NSU, MINES, SDSU and USD) and any courses at a non-SD Regental University for which a Financial Aid Consortium Agreement was initiated. If a student reduces their course load from 12 to 9 hours for example, the reduction represents an enrollment change, not a withdrawal.

Refund Policy

Refunds for room and board are based on the percent of the enrollment period remaining after the date of withdrawal. No refunds will be issued after 60% of the enrollment period has been completed.

Students who withdraw, drop out, or are expelled from the University within the drop/add period receive 100% refund of tuition and related fees.

Students who withdraw, drop out, or are expelled from the University after the 60% point of the enrollment period will receive no refund.

Students who withdraw, drop out, or are expelled from the University after the drop/add period and before 60% of the enrollment period has been completed may be entitled to a refund as identified below:

Students Who Do Not Receive Federal Title IV Financial Aid

The refund shall be determined by computing the percentage of the enrollment period remaining after the date of withdrawal times the tuition and fees originally assessed the student.  At no time will refunds be awarded after the 60% point of the enrollment period.

Students Who Receive Federal Title IV Financial Aid (Return to Title IV Policy, also known as R2T4 Policy)

General Information

The US Department of Education requires institutions to apply the R2T4 Policy for students withdrawing from a University who receive Title IV financial aid. The Title IV programs include: Federal Pell Grants, Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grants, Direct Loans, Direct Plus Loans and Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (FSEOGs).

The requirements for Title IV program funds when you withdraw are separate from any refund policy used by the University. Therefore, you may still owe funds to the school to cover unpaid institutional charges. The University will charge the student for any Title IV program funds that the University was required to return.

A student who withdraws after the 60% point of a semester is entitled to retain all Title IV aid for that semester. However, if the student withdraws prior to the 60% point of the term, unearned Title IV funds as determined by the federal policy must be returned to the various programs the student received funding from, other than Federal Work-Study. These funds must be returned even if the University provides no refund to the student. This means the student could owe the University and/or the U.S. Department of Education a significant amount of money.

Post Withdrawal Disbursement

If the student did not receive all of the funds that were earned prior to withdrawing, a post-withdrawal disbursement may be due. If the post-withdrawal disbursement includes loan funds, the student must give permission before the funds can be disbursed. The University may automatically use all or a portion of the post-withdrawal disbursement of grant funds for tuition, fees, and room and board charges. Permission is required to use the post-withdrawal grant disbursement for all other school charges. Students will be notified of post-withdrawal disbursement eligibility within 30 days of the date of withdrawal determination. The school must return the Title IV funds within 45 days of the date the school determines the student withdrew.

Documenting Attendance

Before processing a Return to Title IV Funds, the University must verify the student began attendance in all classes used to determine financial aid eligibility. The University will contact all instructors to verify class attendance. If a faculty member indicates that a student never attended, the University will first adjust the disbursed aid if there is a resulting change in eligibility and then calculate the Return of Title IV Funds. As a result, the student may end up owing the institution for the amount of unearned aid. If the student never attended any classes, all aid will be cancelled and the student billed for all outstanding charges.

Determining Earned Aid

Though your aid is posted to your account at the start of each semester, you earn the funds as you complete the semester. Title IV financial aid is earned by the calendar day, not class day. This includes weekends, holidays, and breaks of less than five consecutive days. The University is required to determine the amount of Title IV aid the withdrawing student has earned and then either disburse any additional funds the student may be entitled to up to the amount earned, or return funds in excess of the amount earned which the student has already received.

If you withdraw during your enrollment period, the amount of Title IV program assistance that you have earned up to that point is determined by a specific formula. If you received (or your school or parent received on your behalf) less assistance than the amount that you earned, you may be able to receive those funds. If you received more assistance than you earned, the excess funds must be returned by the University.

When a student receiving Federal Title IV financial aid withdraws from the University during the enrollment period, the amount of the Title IV funds (not including Federal Work Study) that the student earned during the enrollment period is calculated as of the student's withdrawal date.

Title IV funds are earned at a fixed rate on a per day basis up to the 60 percent point in the enrollment period. Title IV funds are 100 percent earned if the withdrawal date is after the 60 percent point in that period.

If the date a student withdraws from the University is prior to or on the 60% point of the semester, the University is required to determine the portion of the aid disbursed that was "earned" by the student before the withdrawal date. The "unearned" Title IV funds must be returned to the respective federal aid programs. Unearned aid is the amount of disbursed Title IV aid that exceeds the amount of Title IV aid earned based on attendance in the enrollment period.

See the Examples below of how Earned and Unearned Federal Student Aid is calculated.

The following formula is used to determine the percentage of unearned aid that has to be returned to the federal government:

  • The percent earned is equal to the number of calendar days completed up to the withdrawal date, divided by the total calendar days in the payment period (less any scheduled breaks that are at least 5 days long).
  • The payment period is the entire semester. For students enrolled in modules (courses which are not scheduled for the entire semester or term), the payment period only includes those days for the modules(s) in which the student is registered.
  • The percent unearned is equal to 100% minus the percent earned.

Order of Aid to be Returned

In accordance with federal regulations and University policy, if you are eligible for a refund of tuition and fees and housing/meal plan costs, and you are a Title IV aid recipient for the enrollment period, the refund will be returned to the student aid programs. Returned Title IV Funds are allocated in the following order:

  • Direct Unsubsidized Loans
  • Direct Loans (subsidized)
  • Direct PLUS Loans (Graduate student)
  • Direct PLUS Loans (Parent)
  • Federal Pell Grants
  • Federal SEOG
  • Iraq Afghanistan Service Grant
  • Other Federal Sources of aid
  • Other State, Private and Institutional Aid.

Grant Overpayment

Any amount of unearned Federal Grant funds that the student must return is called an overpayment. The maximum amount of a grant overpayment the student must repay is half the grant funds that were received or scheduled to receive. The student does not have to repay a grant overpayment if the original amount of the overpayment is $50 or less. Arrangements must be made with the University or the U.S. Department of Education to return the unearned grant funds. The student will be notified of any grant overpayment within 30 days of the date the school determined the student withdrew.

Notification to student

Once the Return to Title IV Funds calculation has occurred, the Financial Aid Office will notify the student of the results of the calculation and the aid that was returned. The student will be notified of any outstanding balance that may be due to the institution as a result.

Unofficial withdrawals

Title IV aid recipients who fail to withdraw but stop attending class are considered unofficial withdraws. The Return to Title IV Funds policy requires the University to calculate the "earned" amount based on the last day of attendance of the semester. If the student stopped attending prior to the 60% point of the term, the student will be billed for the outstanding charges as a result of the Return of Title IV funds. Unofficial withdrawals are processed within 30 days of determining the student was an unofficial withdrawal.

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Always Here to Help

Financial aid is new territory for many students and their parents, and can some times be complex.

Please feel free to contact the South Dakota Mines Financial Aid Office if you have questions or need assistance on financial aid matters.