What Does Estimated Cost of Attendance Mean

How to Write A Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeal That Gets Results

3 Easy Steps To Appeal Your Financial Aid Suspension
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So you had a bad semester last year; death in the family, outside projects, too many credit hours, and the general temptation to drink until you kill brain cells are some of the many reasons thousands of people each year lose their financial aid eligibility. Now what do you? You don’t want to drop out, but you can’t pay for school on your own. If you want to win and get back on track, here are three tips that can make all the difference between getting back to school and working at Taco Bell.

Admit the Problem

Be upfront on your SAP Letter and make it clear what likely caused the problem. Did you take on to many credit hours? Did someone die in the family? Be upfront at the beginning of the letter and make it clear to the appeals committee what the issue is. Don’t sugar coat it. If it was bad, make it clear how bad it was. External problems such as a death in the family, or a heavy credit load are issues that can be remedied in future semesters.

Explain How the Problem Affected Your Grades

Its important to make it clear how the problem affected your grades. If you were carrying a heavy credit load, letting the appeals board know that you bit off more than you can chew and you are aware that it was a mistake is in your best interests. If a close relative passed away, make it clear that grief, depression, or time helping the family cope with the passing got in the way of studying.


Make It Clear What Steps You Are Taking To Avoid Problems In Future

Its not enough to simply know what caused the problem, and how its effect on your grades; you need to know how to remedy it. If you bad grades were due to a heavy credit load, make it clear in future semesters you will keep your hours below that level. If you experienced depression due to a death or other incident, make it clear you are in or are seeking counseling from a professional (preferably an on-campus counselor) to address it.

3 Easy Steps To Appeal Your Financial Aid Suspension
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By combining the three elements of knowing the problem, knowing how it affected you, and how you will avoid it in the future, you are highly likely to have a successful appeal and get the aid you need to finish school.





14 thoughts on “How to Write A Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeal That Gets Results”

    1. Tierra,

      While not my area of expertise per se I was in a frat for awhile as an Undergrad. So heres the low-down on the greek system.

      At most schools, sororities and fraternities have their initial pledge period at the beginning of the school year.Often, most schools have joint events where all sororities and ll fraternities have a large function to get to know people interested and talk up their respective organizations. From there, a dual selection process begins, where you choose the sorority you are interested in. In addition, they need to choose you as well. The sororities will interview you either formally or informally and an application is usually required. Then They will vote amongst themselves on wether to allow you to pledge with them. If you are accepted, most of your first semester will be spent in the pledge process. Now here is the issue: While all sororities and fraternities are required to a voice hazing as a rule, OFTEN THIS RULE IS IGNORED. You will be “hazed” in that you will likely be peer pressured into taking part in things you would otherwise like to avoid. Failure to do so could mean rejection from the group. If you are cool with this, then you will be fine. However I would strongly advise you to think carefully before pledging. It is a lot of work and effort and expense better spent doing other things to be honest. Whatever choice you make, do not sacrifice your dignity and self-respect for “friends” who would ask you to do something you wouldn’t normally do. Trust me, it is never worth it. Either way, good luck.




  1. My daughter started college this semester and was in a build up room 3 of them one was suppose to move but they pressured my daughter to have her stay ,she hasn’t been sleeping ,falling asleep in class she talked to her R/A and one minute yes they would move her and than it was like it will take time . Her roommates let others use the key and stay in their room so she has to find somewhere else to study they pick on her and she is making herself sick over it, Now they will want us to pay for the whole semester what can we do to win the appeal?


  2. I Just Wanna No If Being A Single Struggling Mother Is Enough Grounds For An Appeal I Can only afford 1 day of Daycare And Stuff Like That


    1. Hi Yahsu,

      so sorry about the delay in responding. my spam filter went ape on me and messed alot of stuff up.

      What state are you from, and school you are attending. I think I may now a program that can help pick up the tab. You can hit me up on twitter @joseJRVazquez to get a quicker response.




  3. My son as recently started a soccer scholarship in usa, however to gain eligibility to play in the NCAA division 1 he had to show all hs academic certificates. He has been deemed a non qualifier based upon his school science exam being a Btec instead of gcse. He got distinction star which is equivalent to A star however they say ths is not enough, hebis in the process of an appeal do you know what his chances are ?


    1. Hi Jo,

      Appeals of this nature are more common than you think, and the NCAA doesn’t want to always stand in an athletes way. They just want to be able to say they have vetted the credentials to maintain the appearance of fairness throughout the process.

      I did do some digging about found a guide on Sport Eligibility and the GCSE/BTEC for use in NCAA sport:


      Also, has the NCAA offered an evaluation based on the BTEC/GCSE Equivalency Table? : http://www.edexcel.com/i-am-a/student/results/Pages/BTEC-equivalence.aspx

      Be aggressive in your pursuit of your appeal. The NCAA is nothing if not a bureaucratic nightmare, and the demand for perfect paperwork is on par with a local council in essex lol. This may require several appeals.

      No matter what, feel free to email me again, or hit me up on Twitter @JoseJrVazquez to get a quick reply.


      1. Hi Just to let you know my sons appeal was accepted once theyd received a letter from his high school confirming that he got the highest grades possible.

        He is now eligible and currently enjoying playing soccer in the Usa Thanks again for your reply


        Sent from my iPad


        1. Jo,

          Im so glad to hear that. I hope he does well in his studies. I would love to do an article and podcast episode on this issue as it is relevant for so many international students. Would either you or your son consider doing a brief audio interview? You can listen to some of my past ones to hear my format. It would help so many kids and parents to hear of your experience and how you handled it.




  4. Hi, I lost financial aid due to the fact that I didn’t complete the required 67% in SAP but I made a mistake in my FAFSA by accidently saying I was in an Associate Degree but I was actually in a certification program. My certification program only requires 49 credits I have completed some of it and the rest I have to be accepted into the program in order to complete. My question is will that be enough to recover my financial aid and if not is there any way I can get financial help I’m unemployed and a single mom with two kids please help!


    1. HI Jessica,

      First step, is to remain calm. There are solutions to this issue. Its scary at first but you can make it work. Lets ignore the AA/Certifcate issue, and work on the appeal. You must appeal ASAP. IF this is your first suspension, they will very likely allow you to gain your financial aid back. But it is important you do the following:

      1) Go to your schools FA website. See if you can find the appeal instructions; if none are available, call the FA office and ask to speak to someone about an appeal of your SAP.

      2) Fill out forms and be prepared towrite a brief statement. The statement should resemble the following:

      a) You name and School ID Number should be at the TOP of all pages
      b) First paragraph should state the reasons that caused you to be on SAP. (illness, lack of child care, work issues)
      c) The second should accept responsibility for those issues, and explain how they will be resolved. For instance, if you had a lack of child care for a class and you dropped it, explain your new child care plan.
      d) You should close it with a brief statement summarizing how you understand how this issue interfered with your learning and that you intend to continue in school and that the problem will not reoccur.

      Be short, and to the point. More the likely, your appeal will be approved quickly and you will get your aid back. They may put restrictions on you but they are simple to comply with.

      As for your other issue, I recommend you simply correct your FAFSA this up coming year to reflect the correct info. Certificate programs are eligible for aid as well.

      Good luck.


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