Students who withdraw from all classes must follow NMU’s withdrawal policy. Students who formally withdraw or stop attending all classes may be required to return a portion or all of their financial aid. The formal withdrawal process starts in the Dean of Students Office, room 2001 of C.B. Hedgcock, with the completion of a Notice of Withdrawal form. The date of first contact with the Dean of Students Office concerning withdrawal will be considered as the official withdrawal date.

The amount of federal financial aid earned is calculated by the Student Services Center based on the official withdrawal date, as determined by the Dean of Students Office, or the last date of attendance by students who unofficially withdraw when they stop attending classes without formally withdrawing through the Dean of Students Office. Unofficial withdrawal dates are determined by the instructor, who will identify the Last Date of Attendance when finalizing the student's grades. NMU’s tuition refund policy is separate from the federal requirement to return unearned aid. Whether or not a student receives a tuition/fee refund has no bearing on the amount of federal financial aid that must be repaid based on the federal formula.

Students who drop all classes prior to the start of the semester, or who never attend classes, will have all financial aid canceled. For students who attend at least one class period, the earned federal aid equates to the direct proportion of the length of time a student was enrolled prior to withdrawing. The amount of assistance that a student has earned is determined on a pro-rata basis. For example, if you completed 30 percent of the payment period of enrollment, you earn 30 percent of the assistance that you were originally scheduled to receive. Once you have completed more than 60 percent of the payment period, you earn all of the federal assistance that you were scheduled to receive for that period.

The Financial Aid Office will reduce all aid according to the Student Services Center calculation. Based on the federal calculation any federal funds are returned in the following order:

  1. Direct Unsubsidized Loans
  2. Direct Subsidized Loans
  3. Direct PLUS Loans
  4. Federal Pell Grants
  5. Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants
  6. Federal TEACH Grants
  7. Iraq and Afghanistan Grant

All federal funds that are determined to be unearned will be returned directly to the federal government within 45 days. As a result, the student may have a balance due to NMU.

If a student is determined to have earned financial aid that has not been funded, they may be eligible for a Post-Withdrawal Disbursement to the student’s account. The Financial Aid Office will contact the student with any remaining requirements. Federal grants must be disbursed within 45 days. If student loans are included in the unfunded aid, the student will have the option to decline the loan funds so that they do not incur additional debt. These loans must be offered to the student within 30 days, allowing the student 14 days to respond to accept or decline the funds. Students carrying federal student loans may be required to complete an Exit Counseling session online.

If a student is determined to have a credit balance remaining after then required aid adjustments, then this balance will be disbursed to the student as soon as possible, but no later than 14 days after the Return to Title IV calculation was performed. 

For alternative loans through private lenders, if a student withdraws from the university, and this withdrawal results in excess funds on the student's account, for default management purposes, these proceeds will be returned to the lender. Before alternative loan funds are returned to lenders, Northern Michigan University will deduct any documented educational expenses on a student's account for that semester.

State of Michigan financial aid programs will be adjusted in accordance with their individual program guidelines.  Michigan Competitive Scholarship calculations are completed using the state worksheet.

NMU Institutional grants and scholarships will be adjusted consistent with the tuition refund percentage, unless the funding is directly related to a specific cost, such as tuition and fees or housing assistance.  In this case, the grant/scholarship adjustments would be consistent with the associated costs.

If a credit remains on the student’s account after state, federal, and institutional adjustments, the credit is prorated among the remaining payment sources, and the funds are adjusted accordingly. This part of the process cannot be completed until all necessary credits, such as room and board, are applied to the student’s account.

For fall semester withdrawals, aid for the winter semester will be entirely removed, unless NMU has information that the student is returning.

Withdrawing from classes will also impact Satisfactory Academic Progress. Please review the requirements as listed in the Satisfactory Academic Progress section.