Financial Aid COVID-19 Information

Illinois Institute of Technology is committed to caring for our students during the COVID-19 outbreak. We understand that many students may face unexpected financial circumstances as a result of the outbreak. The Office of Financial Aid is available to assist with all considerations during this time.

We will continue adding updates to this page as we have more information. If you have questions not outlined here or need clarity on any details, feel free to reach out to us at finaid@iit.edu or 312.567.7219. 

For university-wide updates, please refer to the main COVID-19 webpage

Commonly Asked Questions

Financial Assistance
Billing
Financial Aid
Campus Employment
Miscellaneous

Financial Assistance

Q: My family is facing financial hardship due to a parental job loss or furlough, medical bills, or other COVID-19-related expenses. Is there any assistance available?
A: If you are in this situation, we want to hear from you. Please complete the
Student Assistance Form and a staff member will be in touch to discuss options.

Q: I want to move home for the summer but I cannot afford a plane, bus, or train ticket. Can Illinois Tech assist with my moving/transportation costs?
A: If you are in this situation please complete the
Student Assistance Form and a staff member will contact you to discuss the next steps. 

Q: I heard the CARES Act designated funds for federal grants to assist students with unanticipated expenses based on COVID-19. How can I be considered?
A: The CARES Act includes direct grants for students via the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF). These funds are designated for those who are eligible to complete the FAFSA and receive federal funds. Eligible students can apply through the Student Assistance Form by selecting the HEERF option and indicating relevant expenses and any other relevant details.

Under U.S. Department of Education guidance, continuing students must be meeting satisfactory academic progress (SAP) requirements to be eligible for Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) grants. Students can appeal their SAP status by completing a the SAP appeal form below and sending it to finaid@iit.edu.

Required reporting information for CARES Act funds can be found here.

Q: I’ve heard about the Hawks4Hawks fund. What is this, and how can I apply?
A: Hawks4Hawks was created by the Class of 2017 and is aimed at assisting students facing financial challenges to completing their degree. Illinois Tech’s advancement team has been working to increase donations to this fund during this time of crisis. Undergraduate students faced with financial hardship will be considered upon completion of the Student Assistance Form.

Billing

Q: Will my tuition be refunded or discounted for the spring semester? What about activity and/or student fees?
A: Our goal is to ensure academic instruction continues throughout the semester. Because instruction has continued, tuition and applicable fees will not be refunded.

Q: Have room and board costs been prorated for spring 2020?
A: Yes. Students not living on campus have received prorated room and/or board credits, as applicable, based on original charges for the term. The value of the credit was calculated based on the daily rate of the room and/or board plan from March 23, 2020 (the day the university officially transitioned to online instruction) through May 10, 2020. Any room or board scholarships have been similarly prorated. If you have any questions about room and board credits, please contact the Office of Residence Life at
housing@iit.edu.

For other details regarding moving off-campus, including information about personal belongings, please reference the email sent by the Dean of Students on March 13 to all on-campus housing students linked on the Illinois Tech COVID-19 website

Q: Were students who graduated or applied to graduate charged a graduation fee?
A: No. If you were assessed a graduation fee at any point during this academic year, the fee has been waived. Degrees were conferred on Saturday, May 16, 2020, in a virtual ceremony. Additionally, all graduating students will be invited to return to campus to walk in future commencement ceremonies. 

Q: I still have a balance for the spring term. Will I be assessed late fees?
A: No, the university will not assess late fees until further notice. If you are experiencing a financial hardship as a result of COVID-19, please complete the Student Assistance Form. If you would like to arrange a payment but have questions, contact the Office of Student Accounting at sa@iit.edu.

Q: Can my U-Pass fee be refunded or partially refunded since I’m not traveling around the city right now?
A: Unfortunately, no. As long as the U-Passes are active, per our contract with the CTA, we must charge all eligible students the full fee. We are not able to refund fees or issue partial refunds at this time.

Financial Aid

Q: Will my financial aid be impacted for the spring 2020 and summer 2020 terms due to courses going online?
A: No, as your tuition and fee charges will not change, nor will your federal aid or institutional scholarships.  

Q: Will my veteran benefits be impacted for spring 2020 and summer 2020 due to courses going online?
A: The VA has specific rules around distance learning and VA benefits. However, these specific rules have been waived due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Veterans benefits will not be impacted by the transition to online learning.

Q: I heard there will be no interest charged on my student loans. Can you confirm?
A: All student loans owned by the Department of Education will not accrue interest from March 13, 2020, through September 30, 2020. Loans owned by the Department of Education include all Direct Loans—Unsubsidized Stafford Loans, Subsidized Stafford Loans, Parent PLUS Loans, and Graduate PLUS Loans.

However, if you have a private loan, or a federal loan not owned by the federal government, such as a Perkins Loan, please contact your servicer. Servicers of these loans each individually determine if they will grant any reduction in interest rates or forbearance periods.

Q: I’ve graduated or left the university. Am I required to make payments on my federal student loans?
A: Payments on Unsubsidized Stafford Loans, Subsidized Stafford Loans, Parent PLUS Loans, and Graduate PLUS Loans will not be required from March 13, 2020, through September 30, 2020, as student loan borrowers were automatically placed in an administrative forbearance. Borrowers can still make payments they wish to reduce their debt burden. If you have another federal student loan, please check with your loan servicer to see if forbearance was granted or is an option. 

You can find more information regarding how your student loans will be impacted during the COVID-19 outbreak on the Department of Education’s COVID-19 web page.

Q: If I experience increased costs (such as travel or medical) as a result of COVID-19, can these be considered in my cost of attendance (COA)?
A: Yes. Any student experiencing an increase in travel costs in order to move off-campus for the remainder of the term or an increase in medical costs can have these costs considered in their costs of attendance. The goal of such an increase would be to increase a federal loan offer for any student with remaining eligibility. If you experience increased costs and want to confirm your eligibility, please contact the Office of Financial Aid directly. Documentation of travel expenses will be required.

Additionally, students facing increased expenses are encouraged to apply for HEERF grant funds by completing the Student Assistance Form.

Q: I had to withdraw from all of my classes because of concerns related to COVID-19. Do I qualify for any financial aid considerations because of the pandemic?
A: Students who were using federal aid prior to withdrawing qualify for certain benefits. Please contact the Office of Financial Aid at finaid@iit.edu if you meet this criteria. If you have any documentation (i.e. a notice of increased working hours for first responders, medical guidelines from a physician, etc.), please include it with your inquiry.

Q: I was able to secure a scholarship from an outside organization. What do I do with the check to make sure it’s applied to my bill?
A: Congratulations! The check can be sent to the following address, where it will be processed and posted to your student account:

Illinois Institute of Technology
7539 Solution Center
Chicago, IL 60677-7005 

Q: How will pass/ fail grading impact my Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) status for spring 2020? 
A: SAP consists of three components: grade-point average (GPA), pace, and timeframe. Since GPA is qualitative (ie, the letter grade impacts the calculation), this portion of the SAP calculation cannot be completed with pass/fail grading. If you were counting on your spring term GPA to improve as part of a SAP Plan or to prevent being moved to an ineligible status, you are invited to work directly with the Office of Financial Aid to avoid this grading method hindering your ability to receive aid in future terms. All situations will be handled individually so please reach out directly if you receive a notice from the Office of Financial Aid regarding lost eligibility or if you have any questions. Pace and timeframe are both quantitative measurements of SAP, can still be accurately measured with pass/fail grading and thus will not be impacted.

Q: Will the pass/fail grading this semester impact my institutional scholarships? 
A: No, you will continue to receive your institutional scholarships for spring 2020 and if not graduating, into the next academic year on the standard fall/spring awarding schedule. Check your student portal to view your awards and let the Office of Financial Aid know if you have any questions by emailing finaid@iit.edu.

Campus Employment

Q: I am a student and have a job on campus. Will I continue to be paid if I’m not working?
A: No, any student who has moved home or is no longer working their former hours will not be paid for hours not worked.

Q: I am still on campus. Can I keep earning money through my on-campus job?
A: Departmental needs vary and this will impact whether or not your job is still available. Please contact your supervisor and Student Employment to confirm your individual situation. If your job is not available, you may want to consider reviewing other opportunities on
Handshake.

Q: I am still on campus and would like to be considered for a campus job that has a preference for a student with a Federal Work-Study (FWS) offer. I originally declined my FWS offer. Can I be reconsidered?
A: Yes, if you were originally offered the funds and declined them, please contact the Office of Financial Aid at finaid@iit.edu and we will confirm if you are still eligible, add the funds to your portal, and communicate to Student Employment so they know you qualify for an FWS position.

Q: I am still on campus and would like to be considered for an on-campus job that has a preference for Federal Work-Study (FWS); however, I was not offered FWS. Can I be considered for this position?
A: Yes, if you are eligible to complete the FAFSA, your eligibility can be reviewed. Please contact the Office of Financial Aid at finaid@iit.edu after you’ve completed your FAFSA and we’ll review your eligibility. Financial aid will review your account and confirm directly with you and Student Employment if you qualify for this award.

Miscellaneous

Q: I moved off-campus for the term. Does my university health insurance through Aetna cover me at home?
A: Aetna is a nationwide network, and in most instances an in-network provider is available, although students may also use out-of-network providers. Students can use the “DocFind” tool to locate in-network providers wherever they reside.

Q: I chose to stay on-campus for the spring 2020 semester. Is the meal plan I purchased impacted?
A: The Commons, Global Grounds, and 10 West were open regularly for the remainder of the semester. Please check the Illinois Tech Culinary and Hospitality Services website for up-to-date information.

Q: Can I still use my UPass?
A: Your UPass remained active through May 10, 2020.

Q: My study abroad trip was cancelled for spring 2020. What happens to these costs?
A: Study abroad costs vary by university and program type. Please complete the Student Assistance Form and a staff member will contact you to discuss the next steps.

Q: Will I be fined for overdue library books?
A: No. All items owned by Galvin Library have been renewed until August. If you have any questions about loans or fines, please contact library@iit.edu.

Q: My major requires me to use materials that I do not have at home. Will I need to buy these materials on my own due to the online learning model?
A: This will depend on the individual course and the curriculum. Please connect with your faculty member to clarify any assignments that require physical materials. If something is needed and you are struggling to pay for it, please let us know by completing the Student Assistance Form.