Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 66.60
Liaison Mary Lucus
Submission Date Feb. 26, 2019
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Belmont University
PA-7: Affordability and Access

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.81 / 4.00 Mary Lucus
Director, IR
Provost
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have policies and programs to make it accessible and affordable to low-income students?:
Yes

A brief description of any policies and programs to minimize the cost of attendance for low-income students:

In the awarding of institutional grants based on need, a priority is placed on students with zero or low Expected Family Contributions (EFC’s). Most University grant assistance is reserved for low and middle income families. A description of all our scholarship programs are made public on the Student Financial Aid website.


A brief description of any programs to equip the institution’s faculty and staff to better serve students from low-income backgrounds:

Enrollment Services staff are overall veterans in the field of admissions and financial aid counseling. Belmont places a significant emphasis on the care and concern for all students, including those from low income backgrounds. Students and parents are welcome to schedule personal appointments to discuss their individual questions.

The University's Teaching Center, supervised by the Office of the Provost, provides programming for faculty and staff on teaching students from diverse backgrounds, including socio-economic status. These programs are open to all faculty and staff. In the summer months the Teaching Center offers professional development through its voluntary Book Group Program, which enables faculty to read books on topics in higher ed. and discuss them.

In Spring 2016, the University launched its Office of Multi-cultural Learning and Experience, an institutional companion program to Bridges to Belmont (discussed below). The MLE is charged with developing campus-wide programming on diversity, which includes dealing with the living and learning needs of low-income students.


A brief description of the institution’s programs to guide and prepare students and families from low-income backgrounds for higher education:

The Office of Student Financial Services sponsors as well as participates in several community based efforts to assist low income students with financial aid counseling. Participating and hosting College Goal Sunday for the State of Tennessee is one of our primary community outreach efforts. Presenting at local community schools on Financial Aid Nights reaches a diverse student population, representing all economic backgrounds.

The Bridges to Belmont program includes outreach to students and families on the role and importance of higher education. The Bridges Office conducts these outreach programs during the recruitment and selection process for the incoming cohort of the 34 scholars enrolled annually and extends the outreach through the summer as part of The Summer Academy Program.


A brief description of the institution's scholarships for low-income students:

Scholarships (merit-based) are primarily based on academic achievement, and thus are need-blind. However, these merit-based scholarships help to meet at least a portion of a student’s demonstrated need (the difference between cost of attendance and Expected Family Contribution).

The Bridges to Belmont Program provides full tuition, room and board scholarships to academically qualified lower income students recruited from 4 neighboring high schools in the Metro Nashville Public School system. The program began in 2013 and currently enrolls 96 scholars from diverse and lower socio-economic statuses.


A brief description of the institution’s targeted outreach to recruit students from low-income backgrounds:

Belmont works closely with the Office of Community Relations to identify prospective students from targeted low income areas in Metro Nashville – to both encourage applications for admission and opportunities to address financial need in the enrollment process. This effort includes a series of special scholarship programs, up to full tuition in some cases, for students from historically low income areas.

The Bridges to Belmont Program provides specific targeted outreach to academically qualified students from 4 neighboring high schools in the Metro Nashville Public School system. There is a specific Bridges recruitment process within the Office of Admissions and all prospects, as well as those eventually admitted to the program, receive academic and financial counseling from the Bridges professional staff, the Admissions professional staff and the Office of Student Financial Services.


A brief description of the institution’s other policies or programs to make the institution accessible and affordable to low-income students:

The Bridges to Belmont academic program was launched in Spring 2013 to recruit, retain, and graduate 100 students over 4 years from 4 neighboring high schools in the Metro Nashville Public School system, specifically selected to provide Belmont University the opportunity to give back to the surrounding community. In 2014 the 3 professional staff for Bridges were hired by the University to design, implement and manage the academic program while working collaboratively with the community at large and campus stakeholders.

Non-Bridges scholars who are lower income may qualify for merit and grants-in-aid, as noted above.


Does the institution have policies and programs to support non-traditional students?:
Yes

A brief description of the institution’s scholarships provided specifically for part-time students:

Through the University College, Belmont University addresses the learning needs of adult, non-traditional students. Because traditional four-year degree programs cannot accommodate the educational needs of many adults, the University College provides opportunities to pursue education based on individualized goals and flexible time schedules through degree-granting programs and continuing education experiences.


A brief description of the institution’s on-site child care facility, partnership with a local facility, and/or subsidies or financial support to help meet the child care needs of students:
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A brief description of the institution’s other policies and programs to support non-traditional students:

Belmont is a Yellow Ribbon participant for veterans and dependents, and won an award in 2018 as one of the premier institutions in the U.S. serving veterans. Comprehensive information on the wide range of Belmont support for veterans is available here: http://www.belmont.edu/military/


Does the institution wish to pursue Part 2 of this credit (tracking accessibility and affordability)? (If data is not available, select 'No'):
Yes

The percentage of entering students that are low-income (0-100):
17

The graduation/success rate for low-income students (0-100):
59

On average, the percentage of need that was met for students who were awarded any need-based aid (e.g. as reported to the U.S. Common Data Set initiative, item H2) (0-100):
56

The percentage of students graduating with no interest-bearing student loan debt or for whom no out-of-pocket tuition is required (i.e. the percentage of graduates who have not taken out interest-bearing loans) (0-100):
49

Estimated percentage of students that participate in or directly benefit from the institution’s policies and programs to support low-income and non-traditional students (0-100):
61

The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution and complete the Data Inquiry Form.