Now that registration for next semester is open, I’ve been hearing different things about the fees part-time students have to pay and the requirements on campus for full-time vs. part-time students. Normally I would just ignore rules for part-time students because I have always been full-time, but this year is different. I will only be taking 6 credits next semester to finish out my senior year, so I figured it’s time to get the facts straight since they now apply to me.
After talking to tech support and emailing Paul Stern, Coordinator for University Information, and Financial Aid Enrollment Counselor Katie Sveen, I can now confidently clarify what applies to part-time and full-time students regarding fees and requirements. Here are some questions you might be asking, and I have the answers!
- What is the difference between undergraduate and graduate part-time status?
If you are an undergraduate student, part-time is defined as being enrolled in 6 credits. For graduate students, you are considered part-time if you are enrolled in 3 credits.
- Is there an additional tech fee if you’re not enrolled as a full-time student?
No. It doesn’t matter if you are a full-time or a part-time student; all students who are enrolled at WSU pay the required built-in fee, and no additional cost is added for part-timers.
- How will becoming a part-time student affect my student loan repayment plan?
If you are at least a part-time student, you are advised NOT to use any of your grace period yet for your federal subsidized or unsubsidized loans. In addition, you have to be at least part-time to possibly qualify for these loans.
- What will happen to the financial aid and scholarships I receive as a full-time student if I switch to part-time?
Grant amounts will adjust for students who are enrolled in less than 12 credits (part-time). Be sure to double check that you are able to receive your scholarships at less than full-time status; the financial aid office will need special permission from the benefactor to pay a scholarship out at a lesser credit level if that scholarships requires you to be full-time.
If you have questions about your specific situation, call the financial aid office at 507.457.5090.
- Is there a minimum credit requirement to work on campus?
Students need to be AT LEAST part-time to work on campus. That means 3 credits for graduate students and 6 credits for undergraduate.
- Am I able to enroll as a part-time student if I’m not a senior?
This is usually not advised, but every student’s situation is different. Talk to your advisor if this is something you are interested in attempting. It is very important to know your timeline while at WSU and what classes you need to get done and when to take them in order to graduate on time. One thing that students sometimes overlook is that fact that some senior courses you are required to take in order to graduate are only offered in the spring. But again, be sure to talk to your advisor!