'Show Me the Money': Changes in Federal Student Aid Program Coming Soon

Mar. 8, 2010


FLORENCE, Ala. – Faster loan disbursements, more efficient loan processing and more Pell Grant funding are just around the corner for students at the University of North Alabama, thanks to changes to the federal student aid program and UNA’s transition to Direct Loans.

Starting this summer, students who are Pell Grant eligible and have already exhausted their fall and spring Pell awards may be eligible for additional Pell Grant money. Eligibility requires students to be enrolled for at least six credit hours and maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP). Students receiving their second Pell award during the summer semester must remain enrolled in and attend at least six credit hours to avoid risk of having to repay their summer Pell Grant.

UNA’s transition to Direct Loans is also scheduled for this summer. The move is being made “due to the uncertain outcome of student loan legislation pending in Congress,” said Amanda Sharp, associate director of student financial services at UNA.

“The transition to Director Loans will allow UNA to ensure that students will continue to receive their federal student loan disbursements on time. Students should closely monitor their UNA e-mail and Self-Service for announcements and instructions,” she said.

With Direct Loans, the U.S. Department of Education serves as the lender, rather than a bank or other financial institution. All new and returning students will need to sign a new electronic Master Promissory Note (eMPN) at dlenote.ed.gov. The site also includes additional information on the direct-lending process.

The transition to Direct Loans will also affect the Parent PLUS loan application process. Parents applying for a PLUS loan for summer 2010 and for the 2010-11 academic year must submit a PLUS request form to UNA Student Financial Services and complete the eMPN at dlenote.ed.gov. The PLUS request forms will be posted at www.una.edu/financial-aid.

For more information on Direct Loans or summer 2010 Pell Grant awards, contact Sharp in the UNA Office of Student Financial Services at 256-765-4278 or vasharp@una.edu.