With many of Converse College’s students moving out of residence halls over the past couple of weeks, and the institution’s transition to online learning for the remainder of the spring semester 2020, Converse College will be providing pro-rated remittances for room and board fees. Converse administrators took care to develop a formula for the pro-rated remittances to ensure that as many needs as possible of the student community were taken into consideration.
Converse will proceed with pro-rated room and board remittances for residential students who have moved out of Converse residence halls as of April 5, 2020. The remittance will be specific to each student and will be determined as follows:
- Converse will offer a pro-rated remittance of housing and dining fees using a move-out date of April 5, 2020, for all students, regardless of the day that they departed campus. The formula will be based on individual student federal, state, and institutional aid. Students who are recipients of grant/ scholarship aid that covers 100% of their charges (regardless of the source), will have their institutional aid proportionately reduced, and a refund will not be issued. Students who receive funds from the U.S Veteran’s Administration (VA), may have required adjustments made by the VA to the amount of funds received before Converse can issue a refund.
- Students who had planned to stay in housing but whose circumstances have changed may request an extension to coordinate their move-out. For those students, we will extend their move-out date to the end of business on April 8, 2020.
- Any remittance will first be applied to any outstanding amount owed by the student to the institution and to any loss of deposit due to room damage. Room damages will be assessed by Residential Life staff beginning April 13, 2020 (this date chosen to protect our staff from any potential virus on surfaces), and students whose rooms have damage that wasn’t noted during the check-in process will be notified.
- After the remittance is applied to outstanding balances and/or loss of deposits, students may choose how they want the remaining amount applied:
- Reduce their loan amount by this remittance;
- Apply the amount to their Converse fall 2020 charges
- Donate some or all of the amount to the Student Benevolence Fund to help others who are facing unusual hardship as a result of COVID-19; or
- Request a check.
Other Decisions to Aid Students
In addition to the pro-rated remittances for room and board fees, Converse will also take several other important steps to help its students:
- Finance Charges: Converse will suspend all finance charges applied to student accounts for late payments beginning April 1, 2020. This is to help alleviate the financial challenges that COVID-19 has brought to families and individuals, including students who lost track of their account status with all of the disruptions caused by the virus.
- Commencement Fees: Although Converse will host virtual commencement ceremonies on May 16, and an in-person commencement in August, the institution will return the $150 graduation fee to those students who have paid it, knowing that students may take on additional travel charges to return to campus to participate in the August commencement ceremonies.
Converse’s Office of Accounting and Administration will be going through each student’s account individually over the week of April 6 and April 13 and will communicate to each student through their Converse email address as quickly as the remittance is calculated, with the intent to have all communications to students completed no later than April 17, 2020.
Converse College has convened a task force that meets regularly about COVID-19 and has been providing updates to the campus community. Additional information on operational changes related to COVID-19 can be found at https://www.converse.edu/coronavirus-updates/