Student Loans

The Student Enrollment Center, located in Zimbar-Liljenstein Hall, welcomes the opportunity to provide information and to assist students. The Financial Aid Office is located within this center.

Please call 570-422-2800 or 1-800-378-6732 to schedule an appointment.

Prospective graduate students should contact the Student Enrollment Center to discuss regulations and processes required in order to determine eligibility for loans and university student employment programs.

The Student Enrollment Center administers the federal educational loan programs available to graduate students. Applicants must complete and submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Students are encouraged to submit the FAFSA online at . Recipients must be enrolled in at least six credits of graduate-level class work and must maintain satisfactory academic progress.

Graduate students doing graduate-level course work may borrow up to a maximum of $20,500 in an unsubsidized Federal Direct Loan. Graduate students enrolled in undergraduate-level course work should contact the Student Enrollment Center to determine eligibility. Total borrowing amounts for the loan term, however, cannot exceed the cost of education less other financial assistance.

After your completed application is received and processed, information from the FAFSA will be electronically transmitted to ESU. The Financial Aid Office will determine your financial aid eligibility. Once eligibility is determined, your financial aid awards will appear on your online portal. If a Direct Loan has been offered, you will need to take action in order for a loan to be originated. Online you may accept the full amount, partial amount or choose to decline the loan. If you are a first-time borrower, you will be required to complete a Master Promissory Note (MPN) and entrance counseling. These can be completed online at

Teacher Certification Students

Students enrolled in a post-baccalaureate teacher certification program are eligible for federal Stafford Loans at the undergraduate level.

Students simultaneously enrolled in a master’s degree program and teacher certification should check with the Student Enrollment Center regarding their eligibility for student loans.

Verification Requirements

Verification is the process of comparing actual financial data from tax returns to the data provided on the FAFSA. Much of the selection process is random. 

However, some applicants are selected because the information on the FAFSA is inconsistent. Applicants for financial aid should save all records and other materials used to complete the FAFSA such as U.S. federal income tax returns, and other records which will substantiate sources of income available. 

If a file is selected for verification, the required information will be requested from the applicant. Failure to supply this information will result in the cancellation of all financial aid. Verification may also result in a revision to any aid awarded prior to the completion of the verification process.

Payment of Financial Aid

Financial aid awards are credited directly to the student’s university account each semester. Refunds from financial aid will not become available until the student’s university account is satisfied. Students should plan to arrive on campus with enough personal money to purchase books and pay any off-campus housing expenses.

Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy

To be eligible for federal financial aid, a student must maintain satisfactory academic progress. A student must meet all of the following requirements in order to be making satisfactory academic progress for Title IV aid:

  1. Successfully complete 70 percent of the total cumulative credits attempted. Credits attempted are credits you were enrolled in including credits for courses you failed or withdrew from. Transfer credits that have been accepted will be included in credits attempted when determining SAP.
  2. Graduate students must have a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0.

Each student will be reviewed for progress on an annual basis after the completion of the spring semester. The review determines student aid eligibility for the next enrollment period (which includes the summer session and/or the following academic school year).

Maximum Time Frame

Graduate students may receive federal aid for up to 72 cumulative credits attempted. Students who have attempted more than 72 credits with or without the benefit of financial assistance are no longer eligible to receive federal financial aid.

Effect of Incompletes, Withdrawals, Failures, and Repeats

All incompletes, withdrawals, failures, and repeats are included as attempted credits when determining SAP for financial aid. Remedial courses successfully completed will count toward satisfactory academic progress. They do not count toward graduation.


  • Credits Attempted: Credits for which a grade of A, A–, B+, B, B–, C+, C, C–, D, E, F, I, L, P, S, U, W, Y, Z, X has been received.
  • Successfully Completed Credits: Credits for which a grade of A, A–, B+, B, B–, C+, C, C–, D, L, S, or P has been received. Grades of E, F, X, U, W, Y, Z and grades in repeated courses do not count as successfully completed credits.

Repeated classes will not count toward academic progress if the class was passed the first time the student was enrolled and received a passing grade. Only repeated classes that the student originally failed will be counted toward academic progress. Each time a class is repeated it will be included in the cumulative credits attempted.

Reentry to East Stroudsburg University

A period of non-enrollment does not reinstate financial aid eligibility. Students who are readmitted to ESU will have their financial aid progress reviewed and all previous coursework will be measured according to this policy upon reentry.

Financial Aid Appeals

A student who has been denied federal aid for failure to meet the satisfactory academic progress requirements may appeal that denial. By federal regulations, the grounds for an appeal are 

  1. the death of a relative of the student
  2. an illness or injury of the student
  3. other extenuating circumstance which is beyond the student’s control. 

The student must submit a written appeal indicating why he/she failed to make satisfactory academic progress and what may have changed in the student’s situation that will allow the student to demonstrate SAP at the next review (one semester). Supporting documentation must be included with the appeal such as medical documentation, a copy of a death certificate, etc.

The appeal must be submitted to the Student Enrollment Center where the Academic Progress Review Committee will review the request. Students who are granted an appeal will have one semester to regain eligibility. Submitting an appeal does not guarantee approval. The deadline to submit an appeal for the fall semester is July 15. The spring semester deadline is December 15.

Simultaneous Enrollment in Undergraduate and Graduate Classes

ESU and the federal government use different rules and regulations to classify students as undergraduate or graduate.

If a graduate student enrolled in a graduate degree program takes six credit hours of undergraduate course work and only three credit hours of graduate course work, the student is considered an undergraduate student and is only eligible for the maximum amount of federal aid for undergraduate students.

There is a significant difference in the amount of federal loan aid available to an undergraduate student and a graduate student. Students who are classified as graduate students in fall and undergraduate students in spring may find that they are only eligible for a small fraction of the federal loan that they would be eligible for in spring if they were classified as graduate students.