The mission of the Office of Financial Aid is to reduce the financial barriers to a Lehigh education for those families whose resources alone would make it impossible to meet the cost of attendance. The university is deeply committed to providing need-based financial aid.
Lehigh expects each family to make every effort to pay tuition and other educational expenses. Our aid program is designed to measure the difference between our costs and the amount of money your family can be expected to contribute towards those costs. That difference is called “financial need” and represents financial aid “eligibility.” The majority of Lehigh’s funds are awarded on the basis of financial need. Students must file on time and meet academic progress requirements to be eligible for consideration. Our merit-based aid program is explained below.
The basic components of financial aid consist of gift aid (grants and scholarships) and self help (employment and loan assistance). Gift aid is generally not repayable. The majority are awarded on the basis of “need” and are renewable on the basis of continuing “need”, satisfactory academic progress criteria and on time filing. Employment provides money for books and personal expenses, and is paid through biweekly payroll checks based on hours worked. Loans are repayable funds from one or more sources, repayable after the student ceases to be enrolled on at least a halftime basis.
Additional sources of aid include, but are not limited to: state agencies, employers, and various clubs, churches, religious and fraternal organizations, and foundations. High school guidance counselors are able to provide information about local aid programs. There are also database scholarship search organizations that can be accessed via the World Wide Web. Some examples are www.fastweb.com, www.collegeboard.com, www.collegenet.com and www.gocollege.com. (Caution: there are many scam operations that promise great things if you send them a check. It is better to limit your efforts to the proven sites referenced above. ) You are expected to take maximum advantage of any outside financial assistance for which you may qualify, including Federal Grant and state grant programs to enable Lehigh to spread its own funds further and to limit student borrowing.
The financial aid office website carries complete information: www.lehigh.edu/financialaid
Application Procedures for 2012-2013
All students are required to file both the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA – online www.fafsa.ed.gov) and College Scholarship Service CSS PROFILE (online www.collegeboard.com). Additional forms, such as tax returns (2011 for the 2012-13 academic year) business supplements for self employed and Non Custodial Parent Statements for those who are divorced or separated should file on-line at www.collegeboard.com. The financial aid website: www.lehigh.edu/financialaid details the timeline for all applicants (early decision, transfer and continuing) and provides links for all forms.
International students are eligible for university-funded financial aid. Opportunities are limited. Two forms are required: the International Student Financial Aid Application and the Certificate of Finances. The forms can be found on the Admissions website under “Applying to Lehigh.” Students not funded as entering first year students are generally not considered eligible in future semesters.
Renewal of Aid
It is necessary to reapply for financial aid for each year of study and is limited to four years, for a four year program. Extensions beyond that time period require petitions to the Committee on Undergraduate Financial Aid. Applications and filing instructions are available in December in the Office of Financial Aid, or as otherwise posted. In general, renewal requires on time filing, continued financial need and satisfactory academic progress. Some awards carry specific GPA requirements which are outlined on your award notification.
To receive any type of aid, you must be making satisfactory academic progress. The written university policy on satisfactory academic progress is available in the Office of Financial Aid. Generally speaking, it includes 1) remaining in good standing (based on your GPA), 2) advancing a minimum of 24 new credits per academic year (minimally, 12 credits per semester) 3) keeping pace with your class, progressing from freshman to sophomore, etc. and 4)filing all required paperwork on time. Recipients of Lehigh grants and scholarships are expected to achieve at least a 2.00 GPA each semester (or higher as noted on the financial aid notification). Students on academic or disciplinary probation are not normally eligible for university grant aid during any period of the probation. Students not maintaining satisfactory progress, as defined by Lehigh or the appropriate governmental agency, may be ineligible for all forms of federal aid, including loans and employment. Appeals, based on extenuating circumstances, may be submitted to the Committee on Undergraduate Financial Aid using forms provided by the Office of Financial Aid.
Sources of University Aid
Several forms of university-funded aid, based on need and merit, are available.
Lehigh University Grants
Funds budgeted from general income to provide need-based, non-repayable assistance. Lehigh University Grants are also used as a ‘placeholder’ until we are notified of the amounts we are able to award for each of the endowed funds.
Individuals, foundations, and corporations provide these funds through annual contributions to the university. Lehigh has 60 such sponsored funds. Lehigh University grants are also used as a “placeholder” until we are notified of the amounts we are able to award for each of the endowed funds.
Income from invested gifts to the university make these need based scholarships possible. The university has over 800 such funds, half of which are for general, unrestricted use. Curriculum, geographic, outside interests, etc. restrict most of the others.
Lehigh University Academic Merit Awards
The equivalent of seven full tuition awards (awarded as one half or full tuition) will be awarded to entering freshmen. Selections are made by the Office of Admissions based on academic excellence, extra curricular and leadership activities. Awards are renewable for four years of undergraduate study and require a 3.0 average and satisfactory progress toward a Lehigh degree.
Approximately 70 scholarships, in an annual amount of $10,000 will be awarded to entering freshmen. Selections are made by the Office of Admissions based on academic excellence and significant extra-curricular and leadership activities. Awards are renewable over four years of undergraduate study, and require a 3.00 average and satisfactory progress toward a Lehigh degree.
Baker Gifted Arts Scholarships
Awards are given to students from Northeast Pennsylvania and are valued at $3,000 per year, renewable over four years. Selections are made by the faculties of the Music and Theatre departments, and are based on taped performances and letters of recommendation.
Army ROTC Leadership Awards
In certain instances, the university may supplement an Army ROTC scholarship with a leadership award that is equal to the cost of room and board. These are highly competitive and require a 2.5 average for renewal.
Lehigh is a collegiate sponsor of the National Merit Scholarship program. Scholarships ranging from $1,000 to $2,000 per year may be awarded to Merit finalists selecting Lehigh as their first choice college, and who are not also receiving another form of National Merit scholarship.
Rodale Scholarship in Journalism
Qualified students may receive a $2,500 scholarship (which may be renewed for three additional years); opportunities to intern at Rodale Press or other prominent media; and one-on-one instruction with Lehigh faculty.
Alumni Student Grants are awarded on the basis of financial need and exceptional athletic talent as evaluated by the Department of Intercollegiate Athletics. Alumni Student Grants replace the loan and employment portion of a financial aid package. Lehigh also awards NCAA grants in the sports of wrestling and men’s and women’s basketball and a limited number of full or half tuition awards in other sports.
President’s Scholars Program
This program provides an opportunity to receive free tuition for a fifth year of study, up to 12 months immediately following the awarding of the baccalaureate degree. The Registrar is responsible for determining eligibility. For further eligibility requirement information please go to the Registrar’s Office Web page at lehigh.edu.
Availability of Jobs
If you are offered work-study as part of your aid package, the Office of Financial Aid will provide you with the necessary forms and orientation to student employment. Jobs are available throughout the university and are funded through federal and university sources. Pay rates range from the federal minimum wage to $10.00 per hour. You are paid on a bi-weekly basis, as you work and submit timesheets. Your work-study earnings are not deducted from your billed expenses.
The Job Locator Development Program is designed to assist you if you do not qualify under the Federal Work-Study program to find employment off-campus or with a number of incubator companies located on the Mountaintop Campus. This program is coordinated through the Office of Career Services.
Aid from the Government
Lehigh University is an eligible participant in federally funded student aid programs. Campus-based programs, where the university makes the awards based on the dollars available, include:
Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants
Federal Perkins Loans
Federal Work Study
Direct entitlement programs (where the government directly, or through commercial lenders for loan programs, provides the necessary funds) include:
Federal Pell Grants
Federal Direct Stafford Loans
Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loans
Direct Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS)
Alternative Educational Loan Programs
There are a number of private educational alternative loans available. We suggest reviewing options available at www.elmselect.com. It is the family’s responsibility to evaluate and select a lender. Federal loan options are our first recommendation.
Army ROTC Scholarships
The U.S. Army awards tuition scholarships supplemented with $480 toward course-related books and a $250 per month stipend. Recipients incur an obligation to serve on active duty as commissioned officers. Contact the Department of Military Science for details.
Information for all financial aid applicants
Confirm that the correct Lehigh Identification Number (LIN) is listed on all forms.
Keep copies of all forms filed for your records.
In our efforts to “go green” we no longer print copies of your award notification. Current students must check their portal accounts for information on awards and missing information. Students may add parents to their accounts to enable them to view this information. Additional information on setting this option, contact the Registrar’s Office
Submit the appropriate state grant application, especially if a resident of Ohio, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware, Vermont, or West Virginia - states from which Lehigh students have brought scholarships. Be guided by the specific instructions. The FAFSA will be the basic form for state grant consideration, although some states do require a supplemental application. Students should be sure to meet all filing deadlines to be eligible for assistance.
Students have the right to know
the cost of attendance;
the refund policy for students who withdraw;
the financial assistance available from federal, state and institutional sources;
procedures and deadlines for submitting applications for financial aid;
how financial aid recipients are selected;
how eligibility was determined, including all resources the aid office considered available to the student;
how and when funds will be disbursed;
an explanation of each type of award received;
for any student loan received: the interest rate, total amount to be repaid, when repayment begins, the length of the repayment period, and the cancellation or deferment provisions of the loan;
for any Federal Work-Study or university-funded job: a description of the job, the hours to be worked, the rate of pay, and how and when the student will be paid;
the criteria used to determine satisfactory academic progress for financial aid purposes; and
how to appeal a decision by the Office of Financial Aid concerning any aid award.
It is the student’s responsibility to:
read directions thoroughly, complete all application forms accurately, and to comply with any deadlines;
provide any supplemental information or documentation required by the Office of Financial Aid or other agency if applicable;
read, understand, and keep copies of any forms the student is required to sign;
repay any student loans received;
attend an entrance interview and an exit interview if federal, state or university loans are received while in attendance at Lehigh;
notify the Office of Financial Aid of any change in enrollment status or financial status (including any scholarships or grants received from outside sources); changes of address and enrollment status must also be reported to lender(s) for any loan(s);
satisfactorily perform the work agreed upon in a Federal Work-Study or university-funded work program; and
know and comply with all requirements for continuation of financial aid, including satisfactory academic progress requirements.
For additional information write to the Office of Financial Aid, Lehigh University, 218 W. Packer Avenue, Bethlehem, PA 18015; telephone (610) 758-3181; FAX (610) 758-6211, email email@example.com or visit our website www.lehigh.edu/financialaid.