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LHU’s new major and financial aid measures

LOCK HAVEN — Lock Haven University Council of Trustees approved the addition of a new bachelor’s degree in finance and risk management within the business and computer science department in the Stephen Poorman College of Business, Information Systems and Human Services. They also reviewed new measures for financial aid and affordability for students, including utilization of the Student Retention Fund, which was created to provide emergency funding for students facing financial hardships.

The newly approved bachelor’s degree in finance and risk management will have two concentrations: One in finance and insurance/risk management (FIRM) and one in finance, investments and planning (FIP).

“The addition of the new finance and risk management bachelor’s degree is just one more way of demonstrating our focus on keeping up with, and ahead of, the growing workforce needs in our community,” said Robert Pignatello, university president.

The new major will address basic finance, risk management and investments for which occupations are expected to be in greater than average demand in the next several years.

“With greater student interest in finance, the new degree provides opportunities to increase enrollment in this area of interest and will provide for greater depth and breadth in finance, risk management and investments,” said Stephen Neun, interim provost and vice president for academic affairs.

Also announced during the meeting was a new financial aid strategy, based on merit and need. The Enrollment Management Division at Lock Haven University has developed a new financial aid strategy for first time freshmen that combines merit-based aid, need-based aid, federal and state aid to provide the best possible financial aid package for incoming students, according to Stephen Lee, vice president for enrollment management and student affairs.

Eligible students will now receive the scholarship at the time they are admitted, based on their high school grade point average and SAT scores. Scholarships for in-state students will range from $500 to $2,500 and out-of-state scholarships will range from $2,000 to $4,000. This will help students understand a reduction in their price earlier in the process.

“The strategy is designed to support recruitment and retention initiatives,” Lee said.

As students complete their Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), they will also receive need-based aid if they are eligible. Need-based aid will be awarded based on a student’s Expected Family Contribution (EFC) and financial need that was not met with merit-based, state or federal aid.

Lock Haven University anticipates committing an additional $250,000 in institutional funds to support this merit-based and need-based financial aid strategy, according to Lee.

The university’s Student Retention Fund will help current students cover costs that might keep them from returning for another semester or completing their degree.

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