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Policies

Tuition Assistance Programs

Tuition Assistance Programs

Policy Statement: Lewis & Clark College maintains or participates in three types of programs that provide employees, spouses, dependents and same-sex domestic partner with various forms of financial assistance to enable them to take advantage of a wide range of educational opportunities. They are:

* The Lewis & Clark College Tuition Waiver Program

“Tuition waiver” means the student attending Lewis & Clark College is eligible to have a percentage of his or her tuition waived by the College. The student must, however, pay all fees. This includes any applicable administrative fees, student body fees and course fees. The tuition waiver is 100% for the College of Arts and Sciences, 50% for Graduate School of Education and Counseling and 50% for Lewis & Clark Law School.

* Tuition Exchange Programs

“Tuition exchange” means the student is selected to participate in an exchange of students between Lewis & Clark and another member of a coalition of colleges which supports a tuition exchange program. The Lewis & Clark-sponsored student will receive full or partial tuition waiver for the school attended. Lewis & Clark is a member of two such programs: the Northwest Independent College Tuition Exchange and the Tuition Exchange, Inc. Only dependent children of the employee are eligible for the Tuition Exchange programs.

* The Lewis & Clark College Tuition Reimbursement Program

“Tuition reimbursement” means Lewis & Clark College will reimburse the employee up to the maximum annual amount described later in this policy for undergraduate tuition costs incurred by the employee’s spouse, dependent or same-sex domestic partner attending another accredited institution. The tuition reimbursement program may not be accessed on behalf of the same individual in the same fiscal year (June 1 - May 31) that any other tuition assistance program is used.

ELIGIBILITY FOR TUITION ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS

Eligibility of Full-Time Employees, their Spouse, Dependents and Same-Sex Domestic Partner for Tuition Assistance Programs

Tuition Waiver Program: Eligibility for the Tuition Waiver Program begins for an employee, spouse, dependent or same-sex domestic partner at the beginning of the semester after one year of continuous service by the employee.

Tuition Exchange Programs - Tuition Exchange (National):

Eligibility for the employee’s dependent begins at the start of the semester or quarter after the employee has completed five years of continuous service. Employees hired prior to September 1, 2008 are grandfathered and subject to only a one-year waiting period.

Tuition Exchange Programs - Northwest Independent College Tuition Exchange:

Eligibility for the employee’s dependent begins at the start of the semester or quarter after the employee has completed five years of continuous service. Employees hired prior to September 1, 2008 are grandfathered and subject to only a one-year waiting period. The Northwest Exchange program is being phased out and will stop accepting new students in the fall of 2015. All enrolled students must complete their degrees by no later than the spring of 2020.

Tuition Reimbursement:

Eligibility for an employee to receive tuition reimbursement benefits on behalf of a spouse, dependent or same-sex domestic partner begins at the start of the semester or quarter after the employee has completed five years of continuous service. Employees hired prior to September 1, 2008 are grandfathered and subject to only a one-year waiting period.

Eligibility of Part-Time Employees, Spouse, Dependents and Same-Sex Domestic Partner for Tuition Assistance Programs

Part-time employees, and spouse, dependents and same-sex domestic partner of part time employees, are eligible to receive a prorated Lewis & Clark tuition waiver (under the guidelines specified below) at the beginning of the semester or quarter after the employee completes three years of continuous service for the Tuition Waiver program and five years for the Tuition Reimbursement programs. Dependents of part-time employees are not eligible to participate in the tuition exchange programs.

Tuition Waivers for Certain Long-Term, Part-Time Employees

Employees who are regularly scheduled to work less than 1000 hours per year on an on-going basis, and who have at least 10 years of service with Lewis & Clark College, are eligible for Lewis & Clark College tuition waivers on a prorated basis. Lewis & Clark College tuition will be discounted by the percent of hours worked compared to the hours required to receive the full benefit. The discount will be calculated on the number of regularly scheduled hours at the time of application. This benefit does not apply to temporary employees, adjunct faculty, or independent contractors.

DEFINITIONS

Dependent

Except as provided below for the Law School and Graduate School Tuition Waiver Programs, to qualify as a “dependent” under this policy, a person must be a child (biological, adopted, or a step-child) of the employee or the employee’s spouse or domestic partner and not be claimed as a dependent on the federal tax return of someone other than the employee, their spouse or domestic partner. To qualify for the CAS Tuition Waiver Programs a child must be accepted for admission before they reach the age of 24 and matriculate within nine months of acceptance.

For purposes of this policy “stepchild” shall mean a child (biological or adopted) of an employee’s spouse or domestic partner from a previous marriage or domestic partnership who has lived with the employee for the six months preceding qualification for the applicable Tuition Assistance Program. For purposes of the Tuition Waiver Program for students enrolling in the Law School or Graduate School of Education and Counseling “dependent” shall mean a child (biological, adopted or step child) of the employee, employee’s spouse or domestic partner, who is 30 years of age or younger at the time classes commence. A “dependent” attending the Law School or Graduate School of Education and Counseling will remain entitled to the tuition benefit as long as he or she completes the requirements for awarding of the degree within the time limits required by the applicable academic program, not to exceed five years from the date the dependent first enrolls in the program.

Full-Time and Part-Time Faculty

“Full-time service” and “part-time service” are defined in terms of hours taught per academic year:

 

  Full-time Part-time
College of Arts and Sciences 5 courses or the equivalent according to the standard for the department. Teaching at least 3 courses or the equivalent according to the standard for the department.
Graduate School of Education and Counseling 15 semester hours Dean must designate as benefit eligible
Lewis & Clark College Law School 4 courses Dean must designate as benefit eligible

The above definitions of “full-time service” and “part-time service” are used for establishing the eligibility for tuition assistance programs for both Roster Status and Special Status faculty. Special arrangements must be made through the appropriate dean in cases where alternate workloads are part of the faculty member’s total effort (e.g., reduction in course load for research, part-time service as chair of a department or as an assistant or associate dean, serving on a committee requiring a large time commitment, or sabbatical or other professional leave). In such cases the dean will designate the faculty member’s eligibility for tuition assistance programs.

Full-Time Administrators and Staff

“Full-time service” for non-faculty employees is defined as working at least 1,462 hours in a twelve-month period.

Part-Time Administrators and Staff

Non-faculty employees must work at least 1,000 hours per fiscal year to be eligible for prorated Lewis & Clark tuition waiver and prorated tuition reimbursement.

EMPLOYEE PARTICIPATION LIMITATIONS

The number of courses taken by a Lewis & Clark employee and the timing of those courses must be arranged in such a way that the participant meets all the responsibilities included in his or her full-time workload.

A faculty member must obtain written approval from the appropriate department chair and dean before enrolling in classes.

Administrators and staff who participate in the tuition waiver program must receive written approval of class schedules from his or her immediate supervisor and courses must not interfere with an employee’s work or disrupt the office in which the employee works. The employee must work the equivalent of a regular work schedule.

Enrollment is on a space-available basis, and requires permission of the instructor after formal undergraduate, graduate, or law registration has been completed.

Continued Eligibility Based on Academic Performance

Continued eligibility for participation in tuition assistance programs is contingent upon the participating student maintaining good standing in the school or program as defined by that school or program. Scholastic status of students attending Lewis & Clark is reported each term by the Registrar of each school. A student on academic warning or probation must have special permission from the Tuition Programs Officer to continue tuition program eligibility.

Eligibility of Spouse Dependent and Same-Sex Domestic Partner After Death or Disability of Eligible Employee

In the event of death or disability of an eligible Lewis & Clark employee, the spouse, dependents and same-sex domestic partner shall continue to be eligible for participation in tuition assistance programs. Total disability will be determined using the definition provided by the Lewis & Clark insurance carrier.

Limitations

Eligible employees, their spouses, dependents and same-sex domestic partner may use the tuition assistance program to complete one 4-year undergraduate degree program. Upon completion they are not eligible for tuition assistance to complete a second undergraduate degree. This does not prohibit a student from later accessing a graduate program.

TUITION ASSISTANCE AS TAXABLE INCOME

Employees should be aware that awards under tuition waiver programs and tuition reimbursement programs may be treated as taxable compensation. Employees should consider federal and state tax implications when participating in Lewis & Clark tuition assistance programs.

APPLICATION PROCESS

Information and forms for application to all of Lewis & Clark’s tuition assistance programs are available from the Tuition Programs Officer in the Office of the Provost. Application regulations apply to all summer courses, continuing education programs, and other non-traditional academic offerings in addition to courses leading to a degree. Applications must be renewed each semester.

It is important that the employee, spouse, dependents or same-sex domestic partner applicant obtain information and discuss study plans with the appropriate Tuition Officer as early as possible before the opening of the term in which the student plans to enroll in any of the programs. This is especially true for dependents in the tuition exchange programs, as these programs are competitive and not a guaranteed benefit of employment.

Please Note: Application for one of the tuition assistance programs does not guarantee admission to any institution, school, program, or course. Each student must satisfy the admission criteria and entrance requirements of the Lewis & Clark school or other institution to which he or she seeks admission. For this reason, students should apply to the institution, school, program, or course of choice by contacting the admissions office of that entity before applying for a tuition program.

After application for admission to the course, degree program, or institution of choice, the Tuition Officer will provide written certification to the appropriate Lewis & Clark offices and to any other college involved of the applicant’s eligibility for the tuition assistance program selected. That certification will indicate the terms and duration of the award.

THREE TYPES OF TUITION ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS

1) The Lewis & Clark College Tuition Waiver Program

Tuition Waiver for Study in On-Campus Programs

“Tuition waiver”, as indicated above, is defined strictly as the waiver of tuition at Lewis & Clark. The student must pay general course fees, laboratory fees, special course fees, private instruction fees, or any other type of fee not classified as tuition. In the case of enrollment in a program offered for a “flat fee” (i.e., with no distinction made between tuition and fees) or other non-traditional fee structure, the responsible dean, in consultation with the Business Office of the College, shall determine and record the portion of charges constituting tuition, and only that amount shall be subject to waiver for the participant in this Tuition Waiver Program. Application forms must be filled out each semester and are available from the Tuition Programs Officer in the Office of the Provost.

Employees may take courses for grade and credit either as part of a degree program into which they have been admitted, or singly for credit and grade, but not as part of a degree program.

The Lewis & Clark Law School requires official admission into either the day or evening programs in order to receive credit for classes. It does, however, provide an audit program, open to those who hold a bachelor’s degree, which allows attendance to all courses other than the first-year course schedule. Interested employees should contact the Registrar of the Law School for specific details.

Entering a Degree or Certification Program

In order for a person participating in one of the tuition assistance programs to enter a degree program at Lewis & Clark, the student must meet the entrance requirements for the College of Arts and Sciences, the Graduate School of Education and Counseling, the Law School, or any joint degree program offered by two or all three of the schools. A student admitted to a Lewis & Clark undergraduate degree program must complete the degree requirements within 134 attempted semester hours. After that number of credits has been attempted, even if the student has not completed all requirements, the College will normally not provide additional waivers to the student.

Students matriculated in the Graduate or Law programs must make normal degree progress and fulfill all degree or certification requirements. The Graduate School tuition waiver is limited to the tuition charges for 60 semester hours per program. Students receiving tuition waivers to the Law School are governed, as are all other Law School students, by those regulations of the American Bar Association which specify that full-time (day) law students must complete the degree requirements within five years, part-time (evening) law students within six years.

Non-Degree, Non-Certification Coursework

A non-degree or non-certification student may register for those courses which impose no additional per-student or related incremental costs to the College. Non-degree students may enroll on a space-available basis, with written permission from the instructor, after official registration of degree-seeking students has been completed. Non-degree students are not necessarily required to meet all entrance requirements of Lewis & Clark schools or programs. Contact the Admissions Office of the school in which a course is offered for enrollment requirements for Special Status students.

Tuition Waiver Programs for Studying in Lewis & Clark’s Overseas and Off-Campus Programs

A student who has received a tuition waiver from Lewis & Clark may apply the tuition waiver to an overseas or off-campus program. The amount of full on-campus tuition is subtracted from the total overseas or off-campus program fee and the balance charged to the student. For most overseas and off-campus programs, this means that the student will pay approximately 33 percent of the total overseas or off-campus program charges. The Munich program is an exception, because unlike other Lewis & Clark overseas programs, the Munich program requires participating students to pay their airfare and board costs individually and not through the College. For the Munich program, students participating in the Lewis & Clark tuition waiver program pay approximately 23 percent of the total program fee, plus the airfare and meals out-of-pocket.

Additional international programs may be developed with fee structures similar to those of the programs currently in place. New programs are likely to follow current practice in the determination of the amount of the program fee to be paid by the student participating in the Lewis & Clark tuition waiver program.

2) Tuition Exchange Programs

Dependent children of full-time employees are eligible for tuition exchange, subject to balance of trade restrictions, at any of those colleges participating in a consortium of which Lewis & Clark is a member, if they meet the host school’s regular entrance requirements.

Northwest Independent College Tuition Exchange

Lewis & Clark College participates in an undergraduate tuition exchange program with the University of Puget Sound, Reed College, Whitman College, and Willamette University. Awards are based on a balance of trade between institutions and may depend on a lottery system or other restrictive screening process at the participating college. (Until further notice, only Willamette University is accepting Lewis & Clark College dependents.) Lewis & Clark does not guarantee a participant will be able to participate in the exchange even if admitted to the institution. If the participant is admitted but does not have a place in the exchange, Lewis & Clark will only pay the amount under the Tuition Reimbursement Program (see #3 below for description of program). Current information is available from the Tuition Programs Officer in the Office of the Provost.

The Tuition Exchange, Inc.

This program encompasses over 600 institutions throughout the United States. Opportunities under this program are subject to a balance within the exchange and awards may depend on a lottery system. Current information is available from the Tuition Exchange Officer in the Office of the Provost or visit the web site at www.tuitionexchange.org.

3) Lewis & Clark College Tuition Reimbursement Program

Reimbursement of up to the annual maximum per academic year may be granted upon submission of receipts or other proof of tuition payments for an eligible employee’s spouse dependent or same-sex domestic partner admitted to other accredited undergraduate degree-granting programs. The employee may request different amounts from year to year, and extend the number of years beyond four to an accumulated lifetime maximum according to the table below for each dependent, spouse or same-sex domestic partner. Reimbursement forms are available from the Tuition Programs Officer in the Office of the Provost. In cases when the tuition bill for the first term is less than the annual maximum, the employee will receive only the amount of tuition. The remaining balance may be requested upon submission of the second term’s bill. Requests for reimbursement must be submitted during the fiscal year (June 1 - May 31) in which they occur. Late submissions will be denied. The tuition reimbursement program may not be accessed by the same individual in the same fiscal year (June 1 - May 31) that any other tuition program is used.

The annual and the lifetime maximums listed below will increase by the following amounts effective June 1 of the year indicated.

Year Annual Maximum Lifetime Maximum
Current $1000 $5,000
2008 $2000 $8,000
2009 $3000 $12,000
2010 $4000 $16,000
2011 $5000 $20,000

Approved by the Executive Council, May 31, 2002.
Revised on October 24, 2003.
Revised on February 16, 2005.
Revised on March 31, 2005.
Revised on September 14, 2005.
Revised on May 21, 2008.

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