Louisiana Tech University - Financial Aid - FAQs: Tops
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School Code:  002008

 

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FAQs: Tops

 

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How long can I wait after high school before attending college and still be eligible for TOPS?
You must enroll no later than the term, excluding summer, immediately following the first year anniversary of the date of your high school graduation. If you joined the armed forces within one year after gradation, you must enroll no later than the term, excluding summer, immediately following the fifth anniversary of the date of high school graduation or within one year from the date of discharge, whichever is earlier. If you were home schooled, contact the TOPS office for guidelines at (800) 259-5626.

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How many hours must I enroll in each quarter to receive TOPS?
Students must enroll in a full-time load which is defined as 8 or more credit hours per quarter. Students enrolled for fewer than 8 hours must be pre-approved for exception to the "continuous, full-time enrollment" rule (e.g. Nursing clinical, academic related internship, graduating senior).

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I need to withdraw from a class. How will that affect my TOPS for this quarter?
Students must remain enrolled on a full-time basis through the 10th class day to ensure that they are eligible for their TOPS funds. Withdrawal before the 10th class day will result in ineligibility for TOPS and will require an appeal to the state agency for reinstatement consideration. Retroactive withdrawals will result in the student being required to refund the TOPS payment for that quarter and will require an appeal to the state agency for reinstatement consideration.

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I have to resign for health reasons. How will I regain my TOPS eligibility?
Students who resign are not maintaining continuous enrollment (Summer excluded) and must appeal the break in enrollment to the state agency for reinstatement consideration.

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How many hours do I have to successfully earn each year to keep my TOPS?
Student must successfully earn, through class attendance, 24 credit hours during the Fall, Winter, and Spring quarters. Summer can be used to make up a credit hour deficiency for the same academic year, and Summer can be used to make up a cumulative GPA deficiency (NOTE: Student may not regain may not regain Performance or Honors level stipend, if at the end of Spring Quarter the cumulative GPA drops below 3.0.) The student cannot use CLEP, credit by exam, credit by Standardized Test Score, nor AP credits to meet the requirement. College courses taken prior to graduation from high school do not count toward the 24 hours requirement but do count in the cumulative GPA for TOPS qualification.

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I am transferring from a semester school. I cannot enter Louisiana Tech until the Spring quarter. Do I have to earn 24 hours for the year?
Transfer students are held to the same cumulative GPA and 24 credit hour completion rules as are continuing Louisiana Tech students. If a student is transferring into Louisiana Tech from a semester school, they must enroll in sufficient hours at Louisiana Tech to complete 24 credit hours during the academic year. (e.g. A student earns 12 semester hour credits at a Louisiana school and transfers to Louisiana Tech in the Spring quarter. That student must complete 12 credit hours in Spring at Louisiana Tech to earn the 24 hours required for the academic year.)

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If I am transferring schools, how do I transfer my TOPS?
Your TOPS will transfer automatically because the TOPS roster is sent to all schools receiving TOPS. If you transfer at the beginning of a new academic year, you would receive TOPS at your new school as long as you met all of the TOPS requirements for the prior academic year. However, you need to be aware that you will not receive TOPS for overlapping terms at different schools when Tech is one of the schools, since Tech is a quarter school and most other schools in the state are semester schools.

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What GPA do I have to maintain to keep my TOPS award?
While students must ultimately earn the GPA specified below, they must also earn a 2.0 minimum cumulative GPA to be considered as making "steady academic progress" and remain eligible for the next quarter. This affects the Fall to Winter and Winter to Spring progression. The student must earn a cumulative GPA commensurate with the award level at the end of the Spring quarter.

Opportunity - 2.3 cumulative GPA at the end of the first year or 24 credit hours; 2.5 cumulative GPA at the end of the second year or 48 credit hours and all subsequent years. If used for graduate study then GPA rises to 3.00.

Honors and Performance - 3.0 cumulative GPA at the end of the first and all subsequent years.

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I failed to meet the GPA requirements. How do I regain eligibility?
Students who fail to meet the cumulative GPA requirement may regain eligibility by continuing to enroll as full-time students and maintain continuous enrollment, earning 24 hours per academic year for up to two years. Only Opportunity level payment will be made in the future.

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I am receiving the Honors TOPS award but will only achieve a 2.75 cumulative GPA at the end of the year. Will I lose my TOPS? Can I regain my TOPS and Honors stipend?
Students receiving the Honors or Performance stipend who fall below the required 3.00 cumulative GPA but remain at or above the 2.3/2.5 cumulative GPA for Opportunity TOPS will have their stipend canceled and remain eligible for the Opportunity TOPS level of payment. The stipend cannot be regained.

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