I enrolled at National American University in a 4 year Bachelor Degree program as a Paralegal. My first semester I had no problems at all and enjoyed the classes and teachers. Since then I have had nothing but problems concerning the financial aid department and with trying to disput one of my grades.
I had received a C as my final grade in one of my classes even though I had been carrying a high B throughout the semester. I have requested numerous times for my final paper grade to see my grade with no success. I have asked the instructor and the Academic Dean for the last 5 months again with no response. This grade effects my GPA and my ability to receive certain grant and scholarship opportunities.
The second most important issue is with the financial aid dept. I am disabled I cannot do physical work. That's why I am enrolled in college to change careers. The last two semesters I had to drop a class which lowered my grant funding but I am still considered 3/4 time. I needed the extra funds from dropping the class to live off of. It amounts to about $900.00 each semester. The problem is that the financial aid dept. doesn't adjust my award letters properly nor do they do it in a timely fashion. It seems as if after I had so many problems the first time (they told me my financial aid would not be affected by dropping the class, but it did!) that I complained to the head office, the Board of Higher Education and the Mn.State Department of Education they are now determined to take as long as they can legally to adjust my awards. They still do not reflect adjustments made for my Federal and State grants properly. I am still waiting for my check even though it states in my account the money has been stipend to me and now this semester is almost over. It has taken them 8 weeks to send me my money. Because of this delay I have almost lost all my belongings in storage. I had to pay hundreds of dollars in late fees, am looking at being evicted and losing my mother rings I inherited that are in the pawn shop. When I spoke to the financial aid head adminitrator I was told that I cannot use my grant funds (they apply my loans first instead of grant funding towards credit costs) for living expenses nor should I depend on that. This hardship has been put on me unnecessarily causing me undo stress. It has left me with a bad taste in my mouth concerning this University to the point of quiting even though I like the curriculum. I have also asked about the FSEOG grant and what consitutes need in order to obtain this grant and have been told they do not know about it. Even though they received over $100,000 dollars last year in funding from the Government in the form of FSEOG grants. They only dispersed $35,000. On my FAFSA I was eligible for FSEOG.
I would like to add that NAU states it works closely with students to make sure that they receive all financial aid and opportunities available for all their students. What I have experienced is the opposite. I was not informed of the 48 credits each year necessary to finish my 4 year bachelors degree on time. Nor was I given the funding to do so. I had to take out another student loan for my summer semester in the amount of $ 3,000.
The University hangs onto grant funding gaining interest for their own investments and shows no concern over their students what so ever. I have sent over 10 E-mails to both the financial aid and the academic advisor and program director with no response. I am so angry at the lack of care since I am paying for their product!!!! They act as if they are doing me a favor instead of the fact that consumers like me are enriching their business and lining their pockets.
Education should be a positive step for all who seek after it to better their lives and others. Institutions like this ruin people. Instead of focusing on my studies I am depressed and on the verge of a nervous breakdown. Being unable to confront the problem because no matter what authority I have contacted I am told the same thing. If it's not illegal there is nothing we can do.
In closing I would like to say that there is something I plan on doing and that is in the future I am going to make institutions like these liable for deliberately causing undo hardships on students. They will be held accountable, laws will be put in place. I am pissed!!!!