I had attended Columbia Southern University from April 2010-April 2015. I had earned a Bachelor of Science in Psychology degree. During that I had also earned an undergraduate certificate in psychology (that was a total 15 college credits) from another accredited, online college. I had earned college credits from a third accredited, online college during that time.
Since I had graduated from Columbia Southern University, I have earned much work experience including volunteer work experience where I had achieved results at. One year after graduating from Columbia Southern University, I had earned a certificate and CEUs from UniversalClass.com. I have earned certifications since graduating.
Anyways, I had decided to go back to Columbia Southern University to earn me a Master of Science in Criminal Justice Administration. I had went back to Columbia Southern University in their graduate program from September 2017-December 2017. During that time I had became pregnant in October 2017. I had called to set an appointment at a Ob/GYN. Due to the upcoming holidays and the scheduling of the doctors and my low-income insurance that I was on, I was told that the doctor would be out often and my only appointment could be in December 2017.
I had already signed up for my next class during this time. I was incessantly vomiting. I was suffering from a condition called "hyperemesis gravidarum" (that I had found out through research). When I had went to see my Ob/GYN in December 2017, they had scheduled me appointments for January 2018 (which I had went to all of them). During the rest of that time in December 2017, I was very sick and had called the office of my Ob/GYN and they had told me to just go to the emergency room at my local hospital for now (which I did go).
In December 2017 the doctor at the emergency room at my local hospital had given me a prescription for Zofran (a type of medication that a pregnant lady take for incessant vomiting). I also had diabetes (was taking Metformin) and high blood pressure (was taking 2 pills for that). I even had an urinary tract infection.
When I went to my Ob/GYN in January 2018, they had also given me a prescription for Zofran and had ran so many advanced tests on me. Anyways, my documentation that I had got from the emergency room at my local hospital and the Ob/GYN that is dated from December 2017-January 2018 states. It clearly states in the document from the emergency room at my local hospital when I had went there in December 2017 that I was 4 months pregnant and had became pregnant in October 2017.
I had thoroughly explained this information to Columbia Southern University, had given them the medical documents (from the emergency room at my local hospital and my Ob/GYN) & had appealed my case to receive financial aid (that they had denied to me twice). I had even appealed my case to the United States Department of Education Federal Student Aid, which they had today just replied this email to me:
Thank you for contacting the U.S. Department of Education's office of Federal Student Aid. We have reviewed your complaint in case number 08424771 regarding Columbia Southern University (CSU).
In your complaint, you stated you began classes in September 2017, and in October 2017, you found out you were pregnant and failing a class, so you withdrew from that class. You have medical documents to prove the pregnancy, ER visits, and medication that was provided during your pregnancy due to excessive nausea. You decided to return to school, however, the school is not disbursing your federal financial aid and saying that you need to use other financial aid. You would like the school to disburse your financial aid so you can further your education.
Federal regulations require an institution to establish Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) requirements to ensure a student is progressing towards the completion of a degree. These SAP requirements must include a qualitative measure (minimum GPA required), quantitative measure (required amount of completed credit hours each semester) and establish a timeframe (150% of the published length of the program) for which a student may receive financial aid. It is at the discretion of the institution to allow students to appeal their SAP status and determine if an appeal is approved or denied.
In reaching out to CSU, they state at the end of Fall 2017, you were placed on “SAP Warning” due to not maintaining a grade point average of at least 3.0 and not meeting a pace of completion of 50%. At the end of Fall 2018, you were placed on “Failing SAP” which made you no longer eligible to receive Title IV aid.
Upon your re-enrollment in April 2022, you submitted an SAP appeal that was denied. An SAP appeal is an institutional matter; our office does not have the authority to override or overturn an institution’s decision. Therefore, we cannot assist you in resolving your case. We encourage you to continue working with your institution’s officials to determine how you may regain federal student aid with CSU. We also encourage you to review your institution’s SAP policy at columbiasouthern.edu/tuition-financing/federal-student-aid/policies-and-procedures/#sap.
We hope this information is helpful to you. We have closed your case. You may reply to this email if you have questions regarding the resolution of your case.
Complaint Resolution Specialist
Program Compliance, School Eligibility Service Group
U.S. Department of Education, Federal Student Aid.
Basically Columbia Southern University and the U.S. Department of Education Federal Student Aid is saying that even during this pandemic and even if you have medical reasons and medical documentation backing your claims that they will not allow you to use Financial Aid to pay for your education if the school says so. Other people should be aware of this. Columbia Southern University expects to pay for my education from another source (which I am unable to do right now). From September 2017-December 2017 I had failed one class. The other class I had withdrew from it to keep from failing it. I was suffering vomiting so bad that no matter what I eat and drank I vomited all day.
I had lost 40 pounds in a few pounds during my pregnancy. I was in so much bad. That had interfered with my studies. During my last term at Columbia Southern University in their undergraduate program, I had paid for the entire thing out of pocket. My undergraduate certificate in psychology, my college credits at another college, my CEUs/certificate at UniversalClass.com; & my certifications are things that I paid for out of pocket too. That proves that I am very serious about my education and had made many sacrifices and worked hard to earn.