Need-based Financial Aid Overview

At Sewanee we understand that an investment in private higher education is a substantial one for most families.  Support from alumni and the University's endowment enables us to provide students with scholarships, grants, and other financial aid programs in an attempt to keep cost from being the primary factor in your decision-making process.

In 2017-2018, Sewanee will invest over $33 million of institutional resources to our undergraduate students through academic scholarships, need-based grants, tuition remissions, and institutional employment opportunities.  We estimate 87% of our undergraduate population will receive institutional, federal, state or private gift funding in 2017-2018.  In August 2017, 91% of entering freshman will receive funding from Sewanee in the form of scholarships, need-based grants, tuition exchange or tuition remission.  Their average gift aid was $24,835.  55% of the incoming class is eligible for need-based aid.

Award Criteria

Financial aid funds are always limited.  To guarantee fairness in awarding institutional funds, Sewanee combines three factors when determining how to allocate institutional need-based aid:

  1. A student must have need-based aid eligibility, computed on the basis of family financial information submitted on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and the CSS Profile.
  2. Priority consideration will be given to students with a complete actionable application on file by December 1.
  3. A student’s academic performance will be considered in the composition and extent of the aid award.

Federal Student Aid

Students wishing to apply for only federal student aid funds must submit the FAFSA. The 2018-19 FAFSA will be available October 1, 2017. Sewanee's school code for FAFSA is 003534.

Institutional Need-Based Aid

First-time need-based aid applicants must submit the CSS Profile. The 2018-19 CSS Profile will be available after October 1, 2017. Sewanee's school code for the Profile is 1842.

What is available?

It is important to understand that the responsibility for financing the cost of a higher education must be primarily assumed by students and/or their families to the extent of their ability. To this end, a number of the aid programs administered by the Office of Financial Aid are awarded first and foremost on the basis of calculated need-based eligibility. Need-based awards are considered to supplement, not replace, the family’s obligation in financing the student’s education.

Applying for Aid

All students who think they need financial assistance to attend Sewanee should apply for financial aid. Prospective students are not considered for financial aid until they have been admitted to the college. Students must re-apply each year for need-based aid, as this assistance is not automatically renewed. Circumstances may change for the applicant and/or the University with regard to the amount of available funds.

ALL STUDENTS: To establish your eligibility for need-based aid, you are required to complete and submit certain forms. 

  • After October 1 and prior to December 1, complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). In order for the data from the FAFSA to be available to the University, you must designate on the FAFSA Sewanee’s institution code, which is 003534.
  • Use of the IRS Data Retrieval Tool within the FAFSA is strongly encouraged. Assets must be reported as of the date you complete the FAFSA and are not subject to update.
  • Tennessee residents who wish to apply only for the non-need-based Tennessee Education Lottery Scholarship Program must file a FAFSA to be considered for this scholarship.

NEW STUDENTS AND FIRST-TIME NEED-BASED AID APPLICANTS: For institutional need-based funding by December 1, you must

  • Submit the CSS Profile. Our school code is 1842.
  • Submit a signed copy of the first two pages of the custodial parent(s) federal 2016 tax return.
  • Copies of all IRS Form W-2’s for each source of employment income received by the parent(s) in tax year 2016.

We reserve the right to request additional schedules or documentation to administer institutional funds.

For aid applicants selected for verification, by December 1, you must

  • Use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool (DRT) imbedded in the FAFSA process OR
  • Submit tax transcripts and provide all applicable W-2 forms for both parent and student.
  • Submit any other required verification documents.

Tax returns cannot be used to complete federal verification but are required to receive institutional funding. Transcripts can be requested online.

Application Deadline

Financial aid applicants submitting their complete application by the stated deadlines are given priority consideration for institutional funds.

Types of Aid

There are two basic types of need-based financial assistance available through the Office of Financial Aid to help students meet the cost of their education: gift aid and self-help programs (loan and work).

Gift Aid

Gift aid includes grants and scholarships; they do not have to be repaid. Beyond any scholarship you may receive through the admission process your award may include grant money whenever guidelines and funding levels permit. Grants available include:

  • Federal Pell Grants. This federal program makes direct grants available to all students who are pursuing their first undergraduate degree, are citizens or permanent residents of the United States, and show eligibility according to the federal formula which applies to this grant. Qualifying family incomes and grant amounts vary from year to year, depending upon federal guidelines and appropriations.
  • Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (SEOG). Under this program, the federal government makes funds available to the institution to award to students who have exceptional calculated need-based eligibility. This grant will be included as part of a total financial aid offer to qualified students.
  • State Grants. These grants are offered by various states for residents, are often based upon financial need, and vary in amount depending upon both federal and state appropriations for this program.
  • Sewanee Funds. These come from over 200 endowed scholarship funds, annual gifts, tuition remissions, and additional amounts budgeted from the University's operating funds.  These are awarded on the basis of calculated need-based eligibility, and applicants are automatically considered for these funds as part of the normal need-based financial aid award process.



We assume a number of our students will accept some personal financial responsibility for their education. For this reason, a federal student loan is included as part of many need-based awards. The type of loan offered depends upon level of eligibility.


Sewanee offers need-based aid recipients an opportunity to work during the academic year as part of taking responsibility for the financing of their education.

Over 500 job opportunities are available for students in administrative offices, academic departments, the University library, and numerous other campus locations. Some positions are offered with off-campus, non-profit agencies in addition to community service positions.

What loans are available to me?

Federal Direct Loan

  • Student is the borrower
  • Completed, valid FAFSA is required
  • Must be enrolled at least half-time each year in a degree-seeking program
  • Interest rate for 2017-2018 is fixed at 4.457% for undergraduate subsidized and unsubsidized loans (as of July 1, 2017)
  • Aggregate undergraduate limit of $23,000 with annual amounts of:
    • Freshmen (less than 32 completed hours): $3,500
    • Sophomores (32-63 completed hours): $4,500
    • Juniors and Seniors (64 + hours): $5,500
    • Undergraduate students may be eligible for an additional $2,000 unsubsidized to above amounts for a total aggregate limit of $31,000
  • Repayment of principle is deferred while the student is in school.
  • Repayment length: up to 10 years

More information on repaying your student loans can be found here.

  • Interest rate is fixed at 6% for unsubsidized loans (as of July 1, 2012, graduate students are no longer eligible for subsidized loans) 
  • Annual loan limit of $20,500 unsubsidized
  • Complete the Direct Loan Request Form and return it to the Financial Aid Office

Parent Financing Options

Sewanee offers a monthly payment plan and participates in the Federal parent loan program to help parents finance their portion of their student’s educational expenses at the University of the South.

Monthly Payment Option: The University offers this short-term plan in conjunction with Tuition Management Systems to assist parents of all students (regardless of income level) with financing of the cost of a Sewanee education. Using this plan, a parent may pay the semester direct cost (minus pre-registration deposits) or any portion of that cost in 4 or 5 interest-free monthly installments each semester. Apply at

  • Who should Consider: Parents wanting a short-term plan to pay for the family's share of college expenses
  • Eligibility: All Parents
  • Credit Check: No
  • Yearly Maximum: Annual Cost of Tuition, Fees, Room and Board less required deposits
  • Interest Rate: None
  • Disbursement: To the institution
  • Application Date: Fall June 1 and Spring November 1
  • Repayment Length: Four or Five month plans
  • Insurance Coverage: Included
  • Fee: $40 application fee per semester

Federal Direct PLUS Loan: This federal loan program offers parents of dependent students annual loans up to the total cost of education, minus other financial aid received. There is no income restriction or needs test for this program, but loan approval is subject to a satisfactory credit check. These loans require no security or collateral. In 2017–2018, the interest rate is 7%. Currently the federal government deducts a 4.45% fee to help defray the costs of making a Direct Loan. These fees are deducted from the loan prior to its disbursement. Thus, on a $10,000 loan, parents should not expect to receive more than $9,555 and the University does not cover the difference between the gross amount of the loan awarded and the net amount disbursed. The student or his/her family must plan to pay the difference between the gross and net amount.)

The borrower has the option of beginning repayment on the PLUS loan either 60 days after the loan is fully disbursed or deferring until six months after the dependent student, on whose behalf the parent borrowed, ceases to be enrolled on at least a half-time basis. Additional details and the PLUS loan application are available at

  • Who Should Consider: Parents wanting a source of supplemental funds and an extended repayment term
  • Eligibility: Either parent with data on the FAFSA or the non-custodial natural parent
  • Credit Check: Yes
  • Yearly Maximum: Annual Cost of Education less any other financial aid
  • Interest Rate: 7% through 7/1/2018
  • Origination Fee: 4.45%
  • Disbursement: To the institution
  • Application Date: July 1, pre-approval required
  • Repayment Length: Normally up to 10 years
  • Insurance Coverage: N/A

Student Rights and Responsibilities

Recipients of federal student aid have certain rights they should know and responsibilities they must meet. Knowing what these are will put students in a better position to make decisions about their educational goals and the best means to achieve them.

Student Rights

All students have the right to know:

  • What financial assistance is available, including information on all Federal, state, local, private, and institutional financial aid programs.
  • The names of the school’s financial aid personnel, where they are located, and how to contact them for information.
  • What the procedures and deadlines are for submitting applications for each available financial aid program.
  • How the school selects financial aid recipients.
  • How the school determines your financial need. This process includes how costs for tuition and fees, room and board, travel, books and supplies, and personal and miscellaneous expenses are considered in your cost of education. It also includes the resources considered in calculating your need (such as parental contribution, other financial aid, assets, etc.).
  • How much of your financial need, as determined by the school, has been met.
  • How and when you will receive your financial aid.
  • How the school determines each type and amount of assistance in your financial aid package.
  • What the interest rate is on any student loan you have, the total amount you must repay, the length of time you have to repay, when you must start repaying, and what cancelation or deferment (postponement) provisions apply.
  • If you are offered a Federal Work-Study job: What kind of job it is, what hours you must work, what your duties will be, what the rate of pay will be, and how and when you will be paid.
  • The school’s policy in reconsidering your aid package if you believe a mistake has been made, or if your enrollment or financial circumstances have changed.
  • How the school determines whether you are making satisfactory academic progress and what happens if you are not.
  • The school’s refund policy if you do not complete an enrollment period in which you received financial aid.

Student Responsibilities

All students must:

  • Pay special attention to the application for student financial aid, complete it accurately, and submit it on time to the right place. Errors can delay or prevent your receiving aid.
  • Know and comply with all deadlines for applying or re-applying for aid.
  • Provide all documentation, corrections, and/or new information requested by either the Office of Financial Aid or the agency to which you submitted your application.
  • Notify the school of any information that has changed since you applied for financial aid.
  • Read, understand, and keep copies of all forms you are asked to sign.
  • Repay any student loans you have. When you sign a promissory note, you are agreeing to repay your loan. You must repay your loan even if you do not receive a bill.
  • Attend both an entrance and exit interview at the school if you have a Federal Perkins Loan, or Federal Stafford and/or Direct Student Loan.
  • Notify the school of a change in your name, address, or attendance status (changing the number of credit hours you are attempting). If you have a loan, you must also notify your lender of these changes.
  • Satisfactorily perform the work agreed upon in a Federal Work-Study job.
  • Understand the school’s refund policy.

Need Based Eligibility

The Student Budget

The student budget used to calculate aid eligibility includes the cost of tuition, fees, room and board as well as allowances for personal expenses, books, supplies and travel.

For 2018-2019 Sewanee did not raise tuition from the 2017-2018 rates.

Tuition $44,848
Fees $272
Room and Board $12,880
Total Billed (direct) costs $58,000
In addition you can expect the following out of pocket expenses:  
Estimated Books and Personal Expenses $2,000
Estimated Travel (based on state of residence) $400-$1,200
Total estimated (indirect) costs $2,400 to $3,200

NOTE: A travel allowance based on state of residence is included in this budget to assist in meeting the partial expense of trips home within the continental United States.

It is important to note that student fees and tuition do not cover the actual cost of a Sewanee education. Gifts from alumni and friends and income from the University’s endowment provide every student with a subsidy to cover the difference between actual and assessed costs. Given every effort to keep costs down, they will nevertheless probably rise, at least to keep pace with inflation.

For the purpose of determining your aid eligibility, the formula is a family’s calculated contribution, subtracted from the total student budget, determines aid eligibility.

Expected Family Contribution

Parental Contribution

Parents must provide detailed financial information on the FAFSA and CSS Profile to determine eligibility for institutional need-based funding. (It should be noted that all colleges to which a student submits his/her FAFSA will base their calculations on the same data; however, you should expect that different institutions will interpret and utilize the data differently.) Sewanee will merge the FAFSA data with the Profile data and use both the nationally-mandated procedure and an institutionally-established methodology to analyze the data and determine the family’s ability to contribute to educational expenses. In addition to considering both income and assets, the analysis makes allowances for individual circumstances such as family size, number of children in college, and age of the parents. The Office of Financial Aid reviews the information, taking into consideration any special family circumstances (such as reported losses and situations which affect tax liability, but not usable family income), and arrives at an expected parental contribution to administer institutional funds. Eligibility for federal student aid is determined solely with federal methodology.

Divorced or Separated Parents

In situations involving separated or divorced parents, Sewanee believes the non-custodial parent retains an obligation to assist the student with his or her educational costs. To this end, in awarding institutional aid, Sewanee will calculate an expected contribution from the non-custodial parent which is added to the calculated contribution of the custodial parent. Special circumstances regarding the non-custodial parent obligation will, as circumstances warrant, be taken into consideration.

Re-Married Parents

In situations involving re-married parents, financial data from the step-parent(s) is mandated by law, and such data will be utilized in calculating the expected parental contribution. Pre-nuptial agreements do not apply.

Family Members in College

Parents enrolling in college are not counted in the federal formula for determining a family’s contribution. Siblings attending graduate school will not be automatically counted in the “number in college,” as they qualify as independent students for federal aid purposes. If circumstances warrant, these situations will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis. The University may confirm through the home institution the enrollment of any siblings included in your total number of family members in college. Should they not enroll as anticipated; your aid eligibility will be recalculated as necessary.

Student Contribution

You will be expected to provide your own contribution toward your educational expenses from previous earnings, your savings, and any other external resources. This contribution will be used only for determining eligibility for institutional funds. Twenty percent of your reported savings or any other assets (including the value of trust funds set up on your behalf) will be included as part of your own available resources. If you are eligible to receive Veteran’s Benefits these amounts will also be considered as part of your personal contribution in calculating your eligibility for institutional need-based scholarships. College pre-paid tuition plans established on your behalf are treated as an asset in determining the calculated parental contribution. Additionally, child support payments made on your behalf to the parent with whom you reside will be considered an available resource. Again, all federal fund eligibility is determined using federal methodology.

Independent Students (Students who are not dependents)

Your eligibility status as a dependent or independent student is currently determined by federally-mandated criteria. Students meeting one of the following criteria qualify as independent students:

  1. A student who is at least 24 years of age by December 31 of the award year. (For 2018-2019 this is any student born before January 1, 1995.)
  2. A veteran of, or on active duty in, the Armed Forces of the United States.
  3. A ward of the court or both your parents are deceased.
  4. A student providing more than half support for his/her children, or for dependents other than a spouse.
  5. A student working on a master’s or doctorate program.
  6. A married student.
  7. If at any time since you turned age 13, both of your parents were deceased, you were in foster care or  you were a dependent or ward of the court
  8. If  you are or were an emancipated minor as determined by a court in your state of legal residence
  9. If you are or were  in a legal guardianship as determined by a court in your state of legal residence
  10. At any time on or after July 1, 2017, did your high school or school district homeless liaison determine that you were an unaccompanied youth who was homeless?
  11. At any time on or after July 1, 2017, did the director of an emergency shelter or transitional housing program funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development determine that you were an unaccompanied youth who was homeless?
  12. At any time on or after July 1, 2017, did the director of a runaway or homeless youth basic center or transitional living program determine that you were an unaccompanied youth who was homeless or were self-supporting and at risk of being homeless.

If you meet any one of the above criteria, you are considered to be an independent student, and the determination of an expected family contribution will not include consideration of your parent’s income and assets.

If you do not meet any of the above criteria, you are considered to be a dependent student, and the income and assets of your parents must be considered in determining your expected parental and family contribution.

If you qualify as an independent applicant, you will still be expected to file all of the forms a dependent student must file. Additionally, you may be asked to submit documentation of your independent student status. Whether you are single or married, your student budget will be identical to that of a dependent single student, due to federal requirements governing independent student budgets. Your spouse’s income (if applicable) will be included as a resource in determining your total aid eligibility, again due to federal requirements.

How Are Awards Made?

Financial aid funds are always limited. To guarantee fairness in awarding institutional funds, Sewanee combines three factors when determining how to allocate institutional need-based aid:

  1. A student must have need-based aid eligibility, computed on the basis of family financial information submitted on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and CSS Profile.
  2. Priority consideration will be given to students whose complete applications are received or postmarked by December 1.
  3. A student’s academic potential or performance will be considered in the composition and extent of the aid award.

The University has different award criteria for the current undergraduate population, depending upon when students entered Sewanee. The different criteria, though, contain some common elements:

  1. All students are first considered for federal, state, and institutional grant eligibility. 
  2. Students with significant need beyond the initial grant funding will be considered for work eligibility. Currently, the maximum work award is $1,650 per academic year; as the federal minimum wage changes, this amount could also change in future years.
  3. Student loan options are reflected for all FAFSA filers. 

Continuing eligibility for all funding is contingent on maintaining appropriate satisfactory academic progress standards.

Should fiscal considerations warrant, the University reserves the right to adjust the work and/or loan expectation to more fully utilize its institutional grant and scholarship funds in any academic year.

The Award Notice

Prior to April 1, prospective students eligible for need-based aid, with a complete  and actionable application, will receive a comprehensive award notification. This award will indicate the financial assistance for which these students are eligible at that time. 

Aid cannot be credited to bills until (a) Sewanee is notified of its federal allocation under the applicable aid programs and (b) the verification process is completed.  Additionally, prospective students must submit their reservation deposit before aid will be credited. Continuing students begin receiving Award Notices after grades are issued for the Easter Semester.

The Award Notice is for your information, and need not be returned to the Office of Financial Aid. You may accept all or part of the financial aid award package.

While the amounts shown on an Award Notice are usually fixed, the award amounts are subject to revision due to changes in Pell Grant eligibility, receipt of additional funds, changes in family circumstances, changes in the number of family members in college, federal reductions in prior appropriations, etc.

Terms of the Award

The acceptance of financial assistance carries with it certain conditions and expectations:

  • The offer of aid assumes truthful and correct information. If an individual deliberately falsifies information, that individual will be denied all aid and is subject to potential legal consequences.
  • Should you receive any other assistance not awarded by the Office of Financial Aid, whether it be from private, state, or federal sources, you must inform the Office of Financial Aid. Such assistance is considered an additional resource and will result in the adjustment of your aid award.
  • If your aid award is based upon the assumption that other dependent siblings will be attending college during the award year, this assumption will be verified through the sibling's home institution. Should other dependent siblings not enroll as planned or as defined by federal regulations, or not meet the conditions to be considered a dependent sibling, your award will be revised accordingly.
  • To receive aid you must agree to enroll as at least a half-time, degree-seeking student during each semester covered by the aid award. Pell Grant funding is available for degree-seeking students enrolled less than half-time.
  • If you are a male student who has reached eighteen (18) years of age, you must have registered with the Selective Service or provide proof of why you are not required to be registered.
  • You must use all funds received solely for the purpose of meeting your educational expenses.
  • You must not be in default on a federal student loan, or owe any refund on a previously-received federal student grant.
  • You must make satisfactory progress toward attaining a degree.

How Do I Actually Receive My Aid?

With the exception of Federal Work-Study and Work Scholarships, aid at Sewanee is received through a voucher system; that is, aid is credited to the student’s account by the Office of the Treasurer to help offset the charges for tuition, fees, room and board. Should the aid amount credited exceed these charges, a refund is issued by Student Accounts in the amount of the credit balance in the account.

Federal Work-Study and Work Scholarship earnings are paid directly to the student in the form of a monthly check or direct deposit based upon actual hours worked, and are to be used to meet ongoing student costs, such as travel costs and day-to-day living expenses.

The student and his/her family should plan to have funds available from the family to pay for books and other indirect costs when school begins as earnings from work will not be available until later in the semester.

Financial Aid for Summer School

Generally, students attending summer school at Sewanee are eligible to apply for student loans to pay the costs of enrollment. Consistent with federal regulations, students must enroll for at least six credit hours and make satisfactory academic progress to qualify to borrow for summer school. University need-based and merit-based scholarships, and need-based student employment, are not available during summer school.  Tennessee Hope and Pell Grant recipients should contact this office to determine if any state or federal funding is available for summer enrollment.

Some summer school programs which are external to, but affiliated with, the University (such as Island Ecology and British Studies at Oxford) occasionally offer scholarships to participants. Interested students should contact the program directly to determine if such assistance is available and, if so, what steps need to be taken for consideration.

Financial Aid for Study Abroad

As part of a well-rounded liberal arts education and specifically as noted in the University’s Strategic Plan: “Intercultural engagement, both local and global, offers unmatched opportunities for students to develop humane sensibilities, and to appreciate the differences in the nation and the world. Through study, understanding, and action, students learn to interpret complex societies firsthand and to communicate with a variety of people, whether from other national cultures or other demographic groups. These skills form an important foundation for our students to apply the knowledge and concepts they learn through the disciplines, enabling them to lead the larger communities in which they find themselves. More broadly, students come to realize that the local and the global are, finally, connected.” To this end we offer a wide array of opportunities and where possible provide funding to assist as many students as funding permits, who may choose to include external study as part of their curriculum.

Advent and Easter Programs

Following are the guidelines used for allocating traditional financial aid for external study programs for Advent and Easter semesters (referred to as “portable funding”.):

Given limited University financial aid funds available, use of university grants and scholarships to support external programs is not guaranteed.

Any student wishing to receive institutional funding (any scholarship or grant funded by Sewanee) for any external program must apply for funding consideration by the following deadlines: February 15 for those students wishing to study externally for the Advent Semester of the upcoming academic year and October 10 for those wishing to study externally during Easter Semester of that year. A student wishing to receive portable funding for external study must attend an approved Sewanee program. Only programs approved by the institution are eligible for portable funding.

Students who plan to use only federal or state financial aid for external study must also be receiving credit for their coursework, recorded by Sewanee, be enrolled at least half-time and obtain an approved study abroad leave of absence to receive consideration for funding.

The application process begins with a mandatory meeting with the Associate Dean of Global Education held each semester. Each student must submit their application and rationale for study abroad. A faculty statement is also required that supports and provides further confirmation of the specific benefit and academic program relevance for the student. 

Each student is ranked on a 10 point scale—GPA (4), Student Essay (4), and Professor Recommendation (2). In the student essay the student must address how the chosen program is integral to the progress of the student’s academic pursuits and/or longer-term goals and aspirations, justify the choice of program, and explain the anticipated scholarly and personal benefits of the proposed period of external study. The professor’s recommendation should respond to the student’s proposal, evaluate its feasibility and whether the choice of program is appropriate, and explain whether the student should be granted portability. Students who participate in an official exchange program for which tuition payment is made to Sewanee may receive a bonus point. The ranking by the Standards Committee is then used as a basis for portability decisions, given the amount of financial support which is available for the given term.

The policies above apply to study abroad programs but also to those specific domestic programs which have been approved for special portability consideration (e.g., the Yale-Directed Research Program, Washington semester).

NOTE: Students planning to attend University-sponsored external study programs, such as European Studies, Sewanee in Spain, etc. also need to apply to receive portable funding consideration. Acceptance into University-sponsored external study programs does not carry with it automatic approval of portable funding.

No portable funding can be released if there is a hold on the student’s account and until a leave of absence for study abroad has been properly filed with and approved by the Office of the Associate Dean of the College.

Summer Internships and Programs

Opportunities exist for both formal study and internships during the summer. Many departments and programs have funding beyond traditional financial aid available to assist students participating in these programs. You should refer to the individual departments for information on their specific funding availability. For credit bearing programs students may be eligible for federal student loans and Tennessee residents may have Hope Scholarship eligibility Please contact the Office of Financial Aid regarding federal student loans or Tennessee Hope Scholarship funding for summer, credit bearing programs. Coursework through summer external study, not accepted for credit at Sewanee, cannot be funded through federal or state aid.

Satisfactory Academic Progress

Satisfactory academic progress for need-based financial aid recipients in the College of Arts and Sciences of the University of the South is defined as follows:

  1. maintenance of a minimum cumulative grade-point average (GPA) of at least 2.00 on the 4.00 scale
  2. achievement of a passing grade for all credit hours attempted during any enrollment period, with allowance for the grade of W, I, or F to be received for no more than on full four-credit hour course in an enrollment period
  3. for institutional aid, attainment of a degree in not more than eight academic semesters. Summer semesters attended will count toward your allotted eight semesters of aid eligibility. Please consult with Financial Aid if you have any questions regarding financial aid and summer enrollment
  4. attainment of at least a 1.85 cumulative GPA after the freshman year at Sewanee.

Satisfactory academic progress will be monitored at the end of each semester for all students receiving any form of need-based financial aid for which monitoring is required (i.e., all University-administered need-based scholarship,loan, and work programs; all Federal grant, loan, and work programs; tuition remissions; and Tuition Exchange programs).

Satisfactory academic progress for merit scholars is administered by the Associate Dean of the College, and questions regarding specifics should be referred to that office.

Financial Aid Warning, Probation and Suspension

A need-based recipient will be considered to be on Financial Aid Warning if: he/she does not achieve a 2.00 GPA for any semester, but his/her cumulative GPA remains at least a 2.00; or, if he/she fails to achieve a passing grade for more than one full four-credit-hour course attempted during any enrollment period and it is the first enrollment period during his/her academic career at Sewanee that more than one full four-credit-hour course was not passed. (Grades of W, I and F count as hours attempted, but not passed.) A student on Financial Aid Warning will still be eligible to receive need-based aid. If the student's cumulative GPA drops below the required minimums, or the student again fails to pass more than one four-credit-hour course attempted during a given semester, he/she will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension. Students may appeal financial aid suspension to the College Standards Committee (as described below).

Any student placed on academic suspension by the College of Arts and Sciences will automatically be placed on financial aid suspension.

Please note: Academic progress standards are not the same as the standards required to maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress for financial aid.

Appeals and Reinstatement of Aid

Appeals of the loss of need-based aid will be considered by the College Standards Committee for the following reasons:

  1. Aid has been terminated for failure to make Satisfactory Academic Progress, and the student feels there are reasons for this happening which the Committee should consider
  2. The student has received a grant/scholarship reduction for failure to comply with the priority application date, and he/she feels the reasons for missing the priority date should receive Committee consideration

Should a student wish to appeal either situation, he/she must do so in writing, addressing his/her appeal to the College Standards Committee and mailing it to the Office of Financial Aid, University of the South, 735 University Avenue, Sewanee, Tennessee, 37383-1000. The Committee meets regularly to consider all appeals received by specified dates. The Committee's decision is sent to the student shortly after the meeting takes place.

If the College Standards Committee denies a student’s academic progress appeal, need-based aid may be reinstated if:

  1. The student enrolls as a regular student at the University without benefit of need-based aid and raises his/her cumulative GPA above the required minimums
  2. The student takes an approved leave of absence for one or more regular (i.e., Advent or Easter) semesters. This method of attempting aid reinstatement can be utilized only once during an academic career at Sewanee.

If the student is successful at the first method of reinstating aid eligibility, aid will be automatically reinstated. The second method (approved leave of absence) does not automatically reinstate aid eligibility; rather, at the end of the approved leave, the student must submit a written request for reinstatement to the College Standards Committee, outlining what activities he/she has pursued during the leave and how these activities have prepared him/her to return to, and academically succeed at, Sewanee. The Committee will consider the reinstatement request, and the student will be informed of the Committee's decision.

What happens if I withdraw?

A student withdrawing from the University after registration and before the end of an enrollment period may, per federal regulations, have financial aid funds returned to the source from whence they came. The federal regulation governing the return of federal Title IV funds when a federal aid recipient withdraws or leaves school prior to the end of an enrollment period is 34 CFR 668.22; it specifies what amounts must be returned to aid programs and at which points in time in the enrollment period certain refund percentages apply.

Once the amount of funds (if any) to be returned to the various sources is established, funds will be returned to financial aid sources in the following federally-mandated order: To your Unsubsidized Direct Loan; Subsidized Direct Loan; Federal Perkins Loan; Direct PLUS Loan; Federal Pell Grant; Federal Supplemental Grant (SEOG); other Federal Title IV Grant Programs; and to other sources of aid. Any funds remaining after such required returns are made will be returned either to the student or to the non-federal fund from whence they came.

For fee refund policies please view the Student Account Refund Policy.

Code of Conduct

Universities that participate in Title IV loan programs must adopt a code of conduct with respect to such loans with which the university's officers, employees, and agents must comply. This code of conduct prohibits a conflict of interest between the responsibilities of an officer, employee, or agent of the university and financial institutions with respect to such loans and includes the following provisions:

The University of the South shall not enter into a revenue-sharing arrangement

A revenue-sharing arrangement is defined as an arrangement between a university and a lender under which the lender pays a fee or provides other material benefits, including revenue or profit sharing to the university, or an employee or agent of the university and in exchange, the university recommends the lender or distributes the lender's loan products and the lender makes Title IV loans to the students and parents of the students attending the university.

The University of the South is prohibited from soliciting or accepting any gift from any lender, guarantor, or servicer of education loans

A gift is defined as gratuity, entertainment, loan hospitality, discount, lodging, meals, favor, or any other item having monetary value more than the minimum amount. However, the university is not prohibited from accepting certain items and services that are specifically exempt from the definition of gift such as:

  • Materials, activities, or programs related to a lender's workshop or training
  • Food, refreshments, training, and/or informational material given to the university as for a training session designated to improve the service of the lender, guarantor, or servicer of education loans, only if such training promotes professional development of the university's staff
  • Entrance or exit counseling as long as the university's employees are conducting the counseling and the counseling does not favor any particular lender
  • Philanthropic contributions to the university from a lender, servicer, or guarantor that are a separate entity from education loans
  • State granted scholarships or financial aid

Also, a gift to a family member of the university's employee shall be considered a gift if the employee was aware of the gift and believed it was given to the family member on behalf of the employee's position at the university.

The University of the South is prohibited from making certain contracting arrangements

The university's employees with education loan responsibilities will not accept any financial benefits, including the opportunity to attain stock, from any lender for compensation for any type of arrangement or contract to provide services to a lender or on behalf of a lender.

Exceptions to the rule are:

  • An employee of a university who is not employed in the university's financial aid sector and does not have any educational loan responsibilities may perform paid or unpaid services to the Board of Directors of a lender, guarantor, or servicer of education loans.
  • An employee of the university who has responsibilities with education loans may perform paid or unpaid service on a Board of Directors of a lender, guarantor, or servicer of education loans, only if the university has a written conflict of interest policy that states the employee must disqualify themselves from taking part in any decision of the Board regarding education loans at the university.
  • An employee or representative of the university may serve on a board of directors, or as a trustee of a university, if the university has a written conflict of interest policy that states the board member or trustee must disqualify themselves from taking part in any decision regarding education loans at the university.
The University of the South prohibits offers of funds for private loans

The university shall not request or accept funds from any lender for private education loans including funds for an opportunity pool loan to its students in exchange for the university providing concessions or promises to the lender regarding the number or volume of Title IV loans or a preferred lender arrangement.

For any first-time borrower, the University of the South will not assign a first-time borrower's loan to a particular lender or refuse to certify or delay certification of any loan based on the borrower's selection of particular lender or guarantor.

The University of the South will not request or accept any assistance from any lender with call center or financial aid office staffing

Professional development training for financial aid administrators, educational counseling/financial literacy/debt management materials for borrowers that disclose the identification of the lender that assisted in preparing and providing the materials, or staffing services on a short-term, non-recurring basis during State or federally declared natural disasters, federally declared natural disasters, and other localized disasters and emergencies identified by the Department of Education are not prohibited.

Any university employee, in the financial aid office or with responsibilities regarding education loans or financial aid, who serves on an advisory board, commission, or group established by a lender, guarantor, or group of lenders or guarantors shall be prohibited from receiving anything of value from the lender, guarantors, or group of lenders or guarantors. However, the employee may be reimbursed for reasonable expenses incurred in serving on the advisory board, commission, or group.

Consumer Information

The University of the South makes information available to students and employees as required by federal law. The reports provide information on topics ranging from campus safety to copyrights and peer-to-peer file sharing to financial aid. Links to the most recent versions of these reports and policies are below. Print copies of this information are available, upon request, from the Office of Marketing and Communications or as indicated below.

Academic programs






Documents describing the University’s accreditation are available upon request from the Office of the Provost in Walsh-Ellett Hall.

Annual Security and Fire Safety Report (includes crime statistics) 

Assistance for Disabilities



Drug and Alcohol Abuse Prevention Statement  

Equity in Athletics Report
To see a copy or for more information, please contact the Office of the Director of Athletics in the Fowler Center. 

File sharing and copyright 

Graduation rates 

Refund Policy 

Satisfactory Academic Progress


Student Body Diversity 

Additional data about Federal Pell Grant recipients and disaggregated graduation rates is available in the Office of Institutional Research in Cleveland Annex. 

Student education records and privacy



Transfer of credit policy



Tuition, fees, and financial aid




Withdrawal Policy





2018-2019 Forms

Required application forms with a priority deadline of December 1

FAFSA Filing Instructions

Financial Aid Application Checklist‌

IRS Tax Return Transcript Request Instructions

Contact Us


  • Beth A. Cragar, Associate Dean of Admission for Financial Aid
  • C. Denise Barry, Assistant Director of Financial Aid
  • Hunter Stocker, Financial Aid Systems Administrator
  • Ally Hollis, Financial Aid Counselor
  • Bethany S. Denton, Student Loan Administrator |YES Prep Scholars Advocate
  • Tricia L. Swider, Financial Aid Assistant



Mailing Address

Office of Financial Aid
735 University Avenue
Sewanee, TN 37383-1000

Phone: 931.598.1312

Fax: 931.598.3273


Financial aid applications submitted by prospective and continuing students received by December 1 of each year are given priority consideration. This means that you are assured your share of available institutional funds under Sewanee’s aid allocation system. You must re-apply for need-based aid annually.

Prospective student applicants who have met the priority deadline should receive their aid notification no later than April 1. Continuing students who meet the priority deadline will begin receiving their aid awards during Easter Semester. Applicants who fail to meet the priority deadline will be awarded aid only upon availability and are subject to a reduction in the grant/scholarship portion of any award they may receive.

No later than December 1 complete:

CSS PROFILE (1842) All first-time aid applicants interested in need-based institutional funding
FAFSA  (003534) All students applying for federal or state financial aid