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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 8. Education
Agency 40. State Council of Higher Education For Virginia
Chapter 132. Virginia Student Financial Assistance Program Regulations
5/25/2022

8VAC40-132-50. Award schedule and award amount restrictions.

A. Institutions shall construct award schedules to determine priority for and amount of awards, ensuring that the schedule conforms to the conditions and restrictions listed in this subsection.

1. The institution:

a. Must define its neediest students;

b. Must use the same award schedule for all students whose awards are packaged at the same time;

c. Shall not include the assessed tuition and fee surcharge at four-year institutions when calculating the remaining need and financial need of students exceeding 125% of their program length, pursuant to § 23.1-509 of the Code of Virginia;

d. For students enrolled at multiple institutions or in study abroad programs, shall include as the tuition and required fee component of the cost of attendance the lesser of the amount that would be charged by the home institution for the student's combined enrollment level and the sum of actual tuition and required fees assessed by each institution;

e. May include minimum award amounts for VGAP and Commonwealth Awards;

f. May construct a new award schedule based on the time of packaging and available funds; however, for students whose awards are packaged at the same time, the same schedule shall be used; and

g. Shall define equivalent need between Commonwealth Award and VGAP students.

2. Award amounts must be:

a. Based on remaining need, and

b. Proportional to remaining need (i.e., students with greater remaining need receive larger award amounts than students with lesser remaining need).

3. VGAP-eligible students:

a. Must receive an award before Commonwealth Award-eligible students with equivalent need.

(1) Administratively, all VGAP and Commonwealth Award students are packaged according to the institution's award schedule in use at the time of the packaging run. The award schedule should provide for larger VGAP awards than Commonwealth Awards at equivalent need and should ensure that the neediest students are prioritized over less needy students.

(2) The practical effect is that at the point at which funds are exhausted, the VGAP students at that last level of need to be funded are awarded before Commonwealth Award students at the equivalent level of need. This process ensures that VGAP students are prioritized over Commonwealth Award students with equivalent need;

b. Must receive award amounts greater than Commonwealth Award-eligible students with equivalent remaining need;

c. Who fall into the neediest category must receive an award amount of at least the tuition charged to the individual student;

d. Who fall into the neediest category may receive an award amount of up to tuition, required fees, and book allowance; and

e. If approved for enrollment of less than 12 hours under an ADA exception, should receive an adjusted award amount, calculated in accordance with institution's awarding policies.

4. Two-year colleges electing to use a modified award schedule must:

a. Define "remaining need" as (i) any positive difference between a student's cost of attendance and the student's EFC or (ii) the financial need determined by the U.S. Department of Education and reflected in its payment schedule of EFC ranges for the Federal Pell Grant program;

b. Construct an award schedule that is based on remaining need and the combination of federal and state grant aid; and

c. Include a minimum award amount for the neediest VGAP-eligible student.

B. The following award amount restrictions apply to awards:

1. Financial need over awards are prohibited.

a. An award under the program, when combined with other gift assistance applied to the student's institutional account, shall not exceed the student's financial need.

b. For purposes of the over financial need calculation, only the tuition and fee portion of veterans education benefits and national service education awards or post-service benefits (e.g., AmeriCorps) shall be included.

2. Tuition over awards are prohibited.

a. An undergraduate Commonwealth Award, when combined with tuition-only assistance such as a tuition waiver, tuition scholarship or grant, or employer tuition reimbursement, shall not exceed the student's actual charges for tuition and required fees;

b. A VGAP award, when combined with tuition-only assistance such as a tuition waiver, tuition scholarship or grant, or employer tuition reimbursement, shall not exceed the student's actual charges for tuition, required fees, and standard book allowance.

Statutory Authority

§ 23.1-636 of the Code of Virginia.Derived from Virginia Register Volume 34, Issue 5, eff. November 1, 2017.

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