Required Courses and Student Outcome Tracking

Students must enroll in required courses to qualify for federal and/or New York State, including loans. Buffalo State systemically reviews students’ enrollment for required courses using Student Outcome Tracking (SOT). SOT compares students’ enrollment to their Degree Works audit to verify that each course is required and fulfills specific degree requirements. If the SOT process identifies courses not required, students will be notified so they can take the appropriate actions (e.g., change their registration, work with the advisor to update Degree Works, etc.). Students’ financial aid will be adjusted after the drop/add period elapses to reflect the number of required credits they are enrolled in, which could result in a reduction or cancellation of financial aid.

Eligibility for Federal Work-Study

Eligibility for the Federal TEACH Grant

Eligibility for Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan

Eligibility for Federal Direct PLUS Loans for Graduate Students

Eligibility for Federal Work-Study

The Federal Work-Study program provides employment opportunities in various on-campus offices and in off-campus community service agencies. Students who qualify for the Federal Work-Study program will be paid at an hourly rate and receive bi-weekly paychecks for the hours worked. Federal Work-Study will not be credited to your account. It is the responsibility of the student to secure employment. Federal Work-Study positions are limited; therefore, there is no guarantee of eligibility from one year to the next. Students are encouraged to complete the FAFSA by the priority filing date to receive full consideration to participate in the Federal Work-Study program.

Eligible students will receive a letter before the start of the semester with details regarding the steps to visit the job database in Online Resource for Career Advancement (ORCA). Students who do not qualify for Federal Work-Study or who are not successful in securing a job may be able to secure employment with the assistance of the Career Development Center in Cleveland Hall 306.

Eligibility for the TEACH Grant

TEACH Grant eligibility is determined after the fall, spring, and summer semesters start. Those students who meet the eligibility requirements will be invited to apply for the TEACH Grant. Students must complete Entrance Counseling and an annual Service Agreement at studentaid.gov.

In exchange for receiving a TEACH Grant, students must agree to serve as a full-time teacher in a high-need field in a public or private elementary or secondary school that serves low-income students.

A TEACH Grant recipient must teach for at least four academic years (within eight calendar years). If a student fails to complete his or her service obligation, all amounts of TEACH Grants that were received will be converted to a Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan. Students must then repay this loan to the U.S. Department of Education. Interest will be assessed from the date the grant(s) was disbursed. Note: TEACH Grant recipients will be given a six-month grace period before entering repayment if a TEACH Grant is converted to a Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan. All federal loans require students to be enrolled in at least six (6) credit hours of required coursework each semester.

Eligibility for Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan

Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan is a low-interest loan for eligible students to help cover the cost of higher education. Students are not required to demonstrate financial need to receive a Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan. Students can pay the interest while in school and during grace periods and deferment or forbearance periods, or students can allow it to accrue and be capitalized (that is, added to the principal amount of your loan). Students that choose not to pay the interest as it accrues will have an increased total amount to repay because interest will be charged on a higher principal amount.

If you are a first time Federal Direct Loan borrower you must sign a Master Promissory Note. The electronic Master Promissory Note (e-MPN) is the agreement to pay back any Direct Loans. The e-MPN is available online.

Online Entrance Counseling is required for first-time Direct Loans borrowers. Entrance Counseling will educate students on the rights and responsibilities associated with receiving funds that must be repaid. To satisfy your online Entrance Counseling requirements, students must complete the tutorial and pass a quiz. Failure to comply with this requirement will prevent the disbursement of the student's loan proceeds.

The U.S. Department of Education issued FSA ID is required to complete Entrance Counseling and the e-MPN.

Eligibility for Federal Direct PLUS Loans for Graduate Students

Graduate students can borrow a low, fixed interest rate guaranteed Federal Direct PLUS Loan up to the cost of attendance less any other aid received to help cover educational expenses. This loan requires the student to be credit-worthy.

Buffalo State must determine the student’s maximum eligibility for the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan before a student can receive a Federal Direct PLUS Loan.

The first time a graduate student applies for a Federal Direct PLUS Loan, he/she will need to complete a Federal Direct PLUS e-MPN. This e-MPN is separate from the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan e-MPN.