The Texas Tech University Office of Financial Aid announces some changes in student financial aid for the Fall 2003 semester.
A major change is that there is decreased funding for the Texas Grant Program. The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board has informed universities that while the Texas Legislature did add more than $50 million to the Texas Grant Program, sufficient funds are not available to cover all eligible incoming students.
Paul Blake, Assistant Director of Operations in the Office of Financial Aid, said that Texas Tech will be able to award Texas grant funds to all prior recipients who meet state eligibility requirements. "We will also use reserve funds to honor awards to those incoming students who have already received estimated Texas grant awards," said Blake.
The Office of Financial Aid has also received notification from the state that a new loan fund, the B-On-Time Program, will provide another alternative for students who may be eligible for, but enable to receive, a Texas Grant Program loan. The B-On-Time Program is a zero interest loan that may be forgiven if a student graduates within a specified number of years and within six hours of the required number of hours for his or her major with a B average.
The state commissioner of higher education's office anticipates the B-On-Time Loan Program will launch in January. State officials are now in the process of developing rules and procedures for this new program.
There are also two changes in the disbursement of loan funds to students for the fall semester. First, due to a change in the way Texas Tech receives Alternative and College Access Loan funds, the process of making those funds available to students will allow students access to the money faster. Secondly, for the first-time freshman borrowers. there will be a 30-delay for the disbursement of Stafford Loan funds, in which participating freshman have been notified. This change does not include Parent Plus Loans for freshmen.
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