Uconnect Parent Newsletter - April 2014
U and the President
At the University of Mount Union, academics are truly at the heart of our educational experience. Ours is a vigorous academic program that arms students for success after graduation by combining a liberal arts foundation with practical, career-based preparation. Students are challenged to develop competencies that will guide them in life both during and after college through the four pillars of the academic program – the major, the minor, the Integrative Core and electives. When combined, your students’ experiences in these four areas will lead to his or her successful completion of our degree requirements for graduation.
It’s in celebration of this distinctive academic experience that we launched “Academics in April.” Every day during the month of April, we are highlighting one of our exceptional academic programs or offerings via social media using the hashtag #UMUAcademics. We encourage you to follow us on Facebook and Twitter to see the campaign in action!
During the month, you’ll have the opportunity to learn about our undergraduate and graduate programs, Integrative Core, SCHOLAR Day and Honors Program and how each is impacting Mount Union and your students’ experiences. Read about the path to academic success and how Mount Union students proceed successfully to graduation. Check out the “hands-on” opportunities offered by our Department of Theatre and this year’s production of Edges. Explore the benefits of the First Year Seminar courses offered through the Integrative Core and the interesting topics that they introduce. Learn about our chemistry students’ outreach to local K-12 students through their demonstration at Rodman Public Library.
April is truly a month of celebration as we highlight academics at Mount Union. Each and every day, our dedicated faculty members are helping students build an intellectual foundation for today’s realities and tomorrow’s possibilities through a combination of theoretical understanding and practical application. It’s an education that equips our students to stay competitive – no matter how times change or technology evolves.
Thank you for allowing us the opportunity to educate your students. It’s a privilege to meet their needs, see them grow and help them succeed.
Dr. Richard F. Giese
President of the University of Mount Union
U and Students
Congratulations to our upcoming 2014 graduating students and their parents! A packet full of information was sent in late February to students plus a copy sent to their home address for parents. Details including dates, tickets, reservation forms and more are included. Information is also available online on the University Marshal page.
Family Day: September 27, 2014
Registration will begin on August 1, and more information, including the schedule, is forthcoming to families. Please contact the Office of Student Involvement and Leadership at (330) 823-7288 for details.
U and Mount Union
Office of Business Affairs
The Office of Business Affairs wants to make sure you are aware of the dates that will be of importance to you and your student.
Accounts not current have been placed on hold. Those on hold do not have access to view grades or register for fall 2014 classes. Transcripts will not be released to any account on hold. Accounts with balances at or below $400 or those that are up to date on the Nelnet monthly payment plan are considered current. If your student is a senior planning on graduating in May, please make sure your balance is paid in full prior to April 4.
Our office hours are Monday - Friday, 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us at 1-800-992-6682 ext. 4137 or 6557.
Student Financial Services
The Office of Student Financial Services is located in the lower level of the Gartner Welcome Center. You can send email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 1-877-543-9185.
As the 2013-2014 Academic Year comes to a close, the Office of Student Financial Services offers the following reminders:
- The last day to apply for a Federal Stafford or Federal Parent PLUS loan for the 2013-2014 Academic Year is Friday, May 2.
Summer School is considered to be a part of the 2014-2015 Award Year
- Interested in financial aid for summer school? Contact our office about the possibilities after you schedule your classes.
- You can now file the 2014-2015 FAFSA online at www.fafsa.gov. We highly encourage you to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool embedded in the FAFSA. This tool allows the IRS to transmit your 2013 Federal Tax Return data directly onto your 2014-2015 FAFSA. This reduces the number of errors as well as the amount of documentation our office will request from you.
- Not everyone is eligible to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool, you will not be able to use the tool if you are self-employed, filed an amended tax return or if you filed under the status ‘married-filing separately.’
Financial Aid Awards for 2014-2015
- Our office begins evaluating returning students’ aid awards in mid-April for those who have filed the FAFSA. Financial aid awards will be available online beginning May 2014.
- Keep in mind returning students do not get a paper aid award mailed to them, unless otherwise requested. Your student will get an email notification that their award is ready to be viewed online.
- Check the ‘Missing Documents’ section of the aid award to see what needs to be turned into our office.
Loans for 2014-2015
- Students and parents who choose to borrow loans to help with the educational costs are required to reapply each year. Forms for the Federal Stafford Loan and Federal Parent PLUS Loan are available on our website (www.mountunion.edu/financial-aid) under ‘2014-2015 Forms.' Private loan applications can be filed on our website under the PRIVATE LOAN link.
Study Abroad/International Experiences
- Many of our students are either spending the fall semester abroad or are participating in an international experience with one of their classes. We are very excited that our students have this opportunity! Keep in mind that our office is a resource to you and we can assist you in finding loan options to help finance these trips.
Off Campus or Commuting (for juniors and seniors)
- In collaboration with the Office of Residence Life, students who wish to live off campus for the upcoming year are required to meet with a financial aid staff member. The purpose is to determine if any of the student’s need-based financial aid will be reduced due to moving off campus. We will use the 2014-2015 FAFSA results to calculate the estimate, so it will be important for you to file if you have not already. This will allow us to provide the most accurate information to you so that you can make an informed decision about whether to live on or off campus for the upcoming year.
- If your son or daughter borrowed a Stafford loan during their undergraduate education, they will be asked to complete EXIT COUNSELING online at www.studentloans.gov. We will send email reminders to them 1 month prior to graduation.
- www.nslds.ed.gov is a great place to track all federal loans. Your son or daughter can view the total amount borrowed and which companies are servicing their loans.
Campus Jobs – Fall 2014
- On campus jobs will be posted beginning August 18 on iRaider. You must be eligible for Federal Work Study or Campus Employment to work. Please contact our office for details.
Satisfactory Academic Progress for Federal Financial Aid
Federal regulations require the University of Mount Union to establish satisfactory academic progress (SAP) standards for federal financial aid recipients. We will review the following three areas annually: cumulative grade point average (GPA), completion rate, and maximum time frame. This only impacts federal funds such as Federal Pell Grant, Federal Perkins Loan, Federal Work-Study (FWS), Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG), Direct Loans (Stafford and Parent PLUS Loan) as well as financial aid from the state of Ohio. Details of the policy can be found online in the Undergraduate Catalogue on page 10. You can also contact our office with questions. Our next review will be May 2014.
The Office of Student Financial Services is located in the lower level of the Gartner Welcome Center. You can send emails to us at email@example.com or call us at 1-877-543-9185.
Fall 2014 Meal Plan
Learn more about our meal plan options.
Residence Life at UMU
Thinking Ahead to Summer...
Summer housing is available for students who wish to remain on campus for all or part of the summer. Students will have an opportunity to sign up for summer housing soon! At that time students can indicate that they require housing for the entire summer or simply contract for a specified number of weeks.
Students typically move into their summer school assignment the week after graduation (they can stay in their halls until they are relocated) and move back to the halls at the end of the summer about three weeks before the start of school. Students will typically have a roommate (or roommates) over the summer as well.
There is no meal plan option available over the summer, so students should plan on preparing their own meals during this time. The cost for summer housing is $100 per week or $1,500 for the entire summer. If you have questions about summer housing, please feel free to contact the Office of Residence Life at (330) 823-7288.
Ready Or Not Here They Come...
Checking-out already! It doesn’t seem possible, but before we know it, students will be loading up their cars and taking home three times the amount of stuff they came here with in August! Students who came here in a Volkswagon are likely to need a U-Haul to get them back home. At any rate, here are a couple of items for you to know so that you can plan ahead:
Students are required to check out of their residence halls or houses within 24 hours after their last final, unless they are graduating, an official participant in the graduation festivities, an athlete still participating in his/her sport at the close of the spring semester or those students living in summer school housing. All final exams conclude by Tuesday, May 6, 2014; therefore all students except those listed above should be checked-out of their rooms by Wednesday, May 7, 2014 at the latest.
Students must also follow a few simple procedures when checking out of their rooms.
- First, rooms must be returned to the original condition that students found them in when they checked in. Students may ask their Community Educator for a vacuum or trash bags. Some cleaning supplies are available on a limited basis.
- Students must arrange to check out of their room with a Community Educator.
- Students in houses without Community Educators living there should arrange a specific time in advance with the Office of Residence Life to be sure that they will be available at the time that they decide to leave campus.
The Community Educator will obtain the room condition report that was completed with each student upon their move in to their room and they will go through and note any differences in condition that they observe at that time. Students will have an opportunity to make any comments on that form that they wish to as well at that time. Students should also be sure to turn in their keys at this time.
Please be aware, however, that after the rooms are completely empty, the professional hall staff and Physical Plant staff also go through each room and make note of any room damages or excessive cleaning that may be required. This is the staff who ultimately assesses room charges, so although no damage may have been noted on the Room Condition Report that a student receives upon their check out, it is possible that the professional staff may feel that it is appropriate in some cases.
Students have 30 days from the date they are notified of the damage charges to appeal if they so desire. All appeals must be made in writing from the student to the Office of Residence Life via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have questions, please don’t hesitate to give us a call at (330) 823-7288.
Ways to Stay Entertained Over a College Summer
Although it's great for your student to be home for the summer and be free of papers and exams, there might come a time when they will have that moment of – shall we say it – boredom!
To help give them some ideas, we found a great website that might help them ease into summer!
The Mount Union Fund - Honor the Graduating Class of 2014
Philanthropy, like many things, begins at home – whether it is one’s childhood home or Mount Union, our student’s home away from home. Each year, members of the senior class work closely with the Office of the Mount Union Fund to establish a concept for a Senior Class Gift. Last year, seniors participated in record numbers and raised almost $33,000 to build a new clock tower on campus. This year’s project is a personalized sidewalk near the lakes. Every graduating senior has the ability to participate. Graduating seniors can give at one of the Senior Gatherings. As a parent, you can help as well. For more information or to make a gift in honor of a senior, visit this page.
Spring sports are finishing their seasons this month! Cheer on the Purple Raiders at an away game near your hometown or stop by campus. Check the athletic website for team news and sport schedules.
- April 30: Final exam period
- May 1, 2, 5, 6: Final exam period
- May 10: Commencement
Magazine and The Dynamo
The Mount Union Magazine and student newspaper, the Dynamo, are wonderful ways for parents to stay connected with what is happening on campus. Visit the website to read the latest issue of the magazine and the Dynamo.
Looking to Volunteer?
There are a few opportunities parents have to volunteer:
Become involved with Mount Union Women! Mount Union Women was founded in 1933 to support the education of women. Any female graduate or friend of the University may be a member. The organization has active chapters in Alliance and Canton/Massillon that work the concession stands at home football games and host programs throughout the year to raise money for scholarships. Numerous scholarships are awarded each year to deserving female students at Mount Union. Contact the Office of Alumni Engagement at email@example.com indicating your interest.
Become a career mentor through our web-based Exceptional Connections program. This exciting program was designed specifically for Mount Union and recently launched to connect students, alumni and friends of the institution. Connect for mentoring, shadowing or internship opportunities, classroom speaking possibilities and connecting for general career advice.
Participate in M Club events. M Club is the alumni varsity letter winner association that holds several events throughout the year to support current Raider athletic programs. All Raider fans are invited to its annual Reverse Raffle and Silent Auction and summer Golf Outing.