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Rights and Responsibilities

Student Rights

Financial Aid Responsibility

The Financial Aid Office is responsible for processing your aid application and administering your award in a timely manner. You have the right to expect equitable treatment in the consideration of your application for financial aid assistance. Each student’s file is evaluated on an individual basis and financial aid is awarded according to eligibility and packaging guidelines.

The staff reviews files in the order they are completed. Students who provide information to complete their files during peak business times (July, August & September) may experience a delay due to the high volume of files being processed. If you apply or complete your file late, please be prepared to pay with your own funds until your file is reviewed and awarded. Students who are in good standing and have submitted all requirements and are waiting for the financial aid office to review their file, may inquire with the Financial Aid Office staff to determine if they may be eligible to charge their textbooks to their Student Account. 

Confidentiality Statement

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), a federal law that protects the confidentiality of a student's education record, specify that the College may not release information from a student's record to anyone outside of the College without the express written consent of the student. This means that Western Dakota Tech must withhold information about a student's grades, financial obligations, or standing with the College from parents and others who believe their relationship with the student entitles them to have the information. Please understand that because of these laws, Western Dakota Tech cannot release this information without the express written consent of the student. If the student wishes to give consent to non-College employees, they must complete an Authorization to Release Financial Information form.

Please refer to the Western Dakota Tech FERPA Policy and related resources for details. Students may sign a release form, kept on file electronically, granting access to certain records by designated parties. The form needs to either be signed/witnessed by a College Employee or by a notary public. 

Financial Aid Disbursement

Financial aid (grants, fee waivers, scholarships, and Direct Student Loans) are credited to the student’s account and applied toward their institutional charges prior to fee payment, provided they are enrolled for the correct number of credits and their financial aid file is complete. If a student has a credit balance after all of their institutional charges have been paid, a disbursement through U.S. Bank’s Payee Choice will be made for the remaining amount. Credit balances become available to students the third week of fall and spring semester, the second week during summer semester. All credit balances are disbursed through U.S. Bank’s Payee Choice. Students will receive notification from U.S. Bank when their disbursement is available and will need to create an account. Once the student creates an account, they will choose whether the disbursement will be a direct deposit to their bank account, a Zelle payment, or a check mailed to the student’s address on file. If an account is not created within 7 days of notification, a check will automatically be processed and mailed to the student’s address on file. Please be sure to keep the address on file current.

All fees and other institutional charges are due at the beginning of each semester. All tuition and fees are due prior to the beginning of each semester. If tuition and fees are not paid in full or other payment arrangements have not been made with the Student Accounts Office, the student will be unenrolled from their courses due to non-payment and their charges will be reversed on their student account. It is the student’s responsibility to pay any remaining balance on their account not covered by other funding sources prior to the beginning of each semester. The student is responsible for all fees and institutional charges when due, even if they expect to receive financial aid.

Bookstore charges may be available one week prior to classes starting, if all Financial Aid paperwork is complete, or written authorization has been received from Third Party agencies. Vouchers will be provided through the Student Accounts Office.


Student Responsibilities

If your enrollment plans change, you must notify the Financial Aid Office because your eligibility for financial aid may be affected.

If you receive any educational funding, such as Veteran’s Benefits, Vocational Rehabilitation, and/or Employer Assistance, or if you are awarded a scholarship, grant, or stipend, you must report this information to the Financial Aid Office in writing as soon as possible. A Financial Aid Administrator will re-evaluate your eligibility. If you are no longer eligible for part of the aid you have been offered, we will work with you to resolve any over-award as painlessly as possible. If it is necessary that you repay a portion of your financial aid, you will have to repay it before you are eligible for further aid.

After you leave school, you must stay current with your loan payments to the college or lender. If the Financial Aid Office learns that you are delinquent or in default on a loan from another school, your current award could be canceled.

Western Dakota Tech students who utilized Direct Student Loans and cease enrollment or graduate are required to complete Exit Counseling on the Federal Student Aid website.

General Financial Aid Eligibility Requirements

All financial aid recipients must meet the following eligibility requirements:

  • Be enrolled/accepted for enrollment in a degree, diploma, or certificate program.
  • Have a high school diploma or GED.
  • Be a citizen
  • Maintain satisfactory academic progress.
  • Cannot be in default on Perkins Loans or any Direct Loan at any institution.
  • Cannot owe an overpayment of Pell or SEOG.
  • If required, must register with the Selective Service.
  • Cannot have borrowed in excess of loan limits.
  • Have need, as defined by individual program requirements (except for unsubsidized Stafford
    Loans and PLUS Loans).
  • Meet any other program-specific criteria.


Request changes to your award

If you have additional expenses, such as dependent care or costs related to a disability that are not paid by another source (AFDC, Vocational Rehabilitation), you may request an adjustment in your budget. You will be required to provide documentation regarding the expenses. Standardized amounts for dependent care will be used, if you qualify.

If your previous year’s income or your parents’ previous year’s income will be considerably less than your current year’s income due to loss of employment or benefits, death, divorce, or reduction in employment hours, you may request a “Professional Judgment” re-evaluation of your financial aid eligibility. You or your parents will be required to document the change of income. Professional judgments are reviewed on a case-by-case basis in the order they are received after the student’s initial award letter has been processed. Changes due to income only will not be reviewed until after your current year’s income taxes have been filed, unless this is the result of a death or divorce. 

Contact the Financial Aid Office to request Professional Judgement – 605-718-2988 or finaid@wdt.edu

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