Student Handbook
Academic Forgiveness Policy

Academic Forgiveness Policy

The Academic Forgiveness Policy extends to a student who has been away from Riverland for a period of at least three years, a one-time opportunity to establish a new GPA. The policy will not apply if a student has earned a degree, diploma, or certificate from Riverland for the period in which they are asking for forgiveness. The student must not have been enrolled in course work for credit at Riverland for a minimum of three consecutive years prior to the point of requesting academic forgiveness. Upon readmission to Riverland, the student must demonstrate academic ability by successfully completing 12 semester credits at the college, with no grades below a C. Students who meet these two conditions can contact the Registrar's office to complete the Academic Forgiveness Application. Once the application for academic forgiveness has been approved and after consultation with the student, the Registrar's Office will make the following adjustments to the student's transcript: The transcript will be separated into two sections indicating the point of the application of the academic forgiveness. Up to 15 semester credits of course work, to be selected by the student, will be rescinded prior to the point of academic forgiveness. However, course titles and grades from these courses will remain on the transcript. Calculation of the student's GPA will not include grades for classes rescinded by the student.
Academic Transcripts

Academic Transcripts

Students at Riverland Community College have access to two types of transcripts:
  • Unofficial - generally used on campus by students and advisors.
  • Official - certified and usually sent to other educational institutions, businesses and employers.

Students have online access via the Web to their academic record (similar to an unofficial transcript). Students may view and immediately print a copy of their academic record to their own local printer.

Requests for transcripts must be made in writing. A fee of $5.00 will be charged per transcript. Request forms are available in the Student Service Centers and on the Riverland Web site. Transcripts may be ordered by mail or in person. Requests will NOT be accepted by phone or via e-mail. Transcripts are processed within two or three business days. Official transcripts are not issued to students. An official transcript must be mailed directly to an educational institution, or to an official of an organization.

Please note: If you currently have outstanding financial obligations to the College, your transcript request will not be processed.

Advanced Placement

Advanced Placement

Riverland will grant college credit to students who have scored three (3) or above on advanced placement (AP) exams. The credits generated from advanced placement exams shall be used for a specific college course that covers substantially similar material to an existing course. Elective credits shall be granted when the exam Is not substantially similar to an existing course. A student must provide the college with an official report of AP examination scores in order to receive credit.

Test Score Credits Course Equivalent
Art History 3, 4, 5 3 ARTS 1102
Studio Art Drawing 3, 4, 5 3 ART Elective
Studio Art 2-D Design 3, 4, 5 3 ART Elective
Studio Art 3-D Design 3, 4, 5 3 ART Elective
Biology 3, 4, 5 4 BIOL 1091
Calculus AB 3, 4, 5 5 MATH Elective
Calculus BC 3, 4, 5 10 MATH Elective
Chemistry 3, 4, 5 3 CHEM Elective
Computer Science A 3, 4, 5 4 CSCI 1020
Computer Science B 3, 4, 5 4 CSCI Elective
Macroeconomics 3, 4, 5 3 ECON Elective
Microeconomics 3, 4, 5 3 ECON Elective
English Lang & Composition 3, 4, 5 3 ENGL 1101
English Literature & Composition 3, 4, 5 3 Humanities Elective
Environmental Science 3, 4, 5 3 Science Elective
French 3, 4, 5 4 FREN 1101
French Literature 3, 4, 5 4 Humanities Elective
German Language 3, 4, 5 8 MnTC Goal 8 Elective
Chinese Language & Culture 3, 4, 5 8 MnTC Goal 8 Elective
Italian Language & Culture 3, 4, 5 8 MnTC Goal 8 Elective
Comp. Government & Politics 3, 4, 5 3 PSCI Elective
U.S. Government ∓ Politics 3, 4, 5 3 PSCI 1010
European History 3, 4, 5 3 HIST Elective
United States History 3, 4, 5 3 HIST 1001
World History 3, 4, 5 3 HIST Elective
Human Geography 3, 4, 5 3 GEOG 1200
Latin: Vergil or Literature 3, 4, 5 3 Humanities Elective
Music Theory 3, 4, 5 4 MUSC1101
Physics B 3, 4, 5 4 PHYS1501
Physics C-Electricity & Mag. 3, 4, 5 4 PHYS Elective
Physics C-Mechanics 3, 4, 5 4 PHYS Elective
Psychology 3, 4, 5 4 PSYC 1105
Spanish Language 3, 4, 5 4 SPAN1001
Spanish Literature 3, 4, 5 4 Humanities Elective
Statistics 3, 4, 5 4 STAT Elective
Auditing a Course

Auditing a Course

Students may choose to enroll in a course without receiving credit. Audited courses cost the same as courses taken for credit. Students must complete a course audit form within the first five days of the semester. Audited classes do not count toward graduation and are not eligible for financial aid. Audited courses will be recorded on the transcript with an "AU".
CLEP (College Level Examination Program)

CLEP (College Level Examination Program)

Riverland Community College will accept CLEP (College Level Examination Program) exams as equivalents for many of its courses. View the CLEP exams available, and their Riverland course equivalent. A minimum score of 50 is required on all CLEP exams except for certain foreign language exams.

Course Repeat

Course Repeat

Students are allowed to repeat a course for the purpose of passing or improving a grade. The lower grade will be clearly identified on the transcript as a course that has been repeated and only the higher grade will be used in calculating the grade point average.
Course Repeats will be process at the end of each term.
DARS and u.select

DARS and u.select

Transferring just got easier! Riverland Community College is a participating member of DARS (Degree Audit Report System) and u.select - both of which are designed to provide fast and accurate course and credit transfer information to students.

DARS delivers an evaluation of the coursework necessary to complete your degree or program at Riverland Community College. Your DARS report will show your coursework completed at Riverland as well as coursework officially accepted in transfer to meet the academic requirements of your degree. To view your DARS you may log in at: http://www.riverland.edu/eservices/index.cfm

U.select is free Web-based transfer information system that can be accessed by any Internet user. U.select is a collaborative effort by Minnesota State Colleges and Universities and the University of Minnesota, which helps transfer students move from school to school and earn degrees in a timely manner. Users have direct access to course acceptability, equivalency and applicability among participating institutions across Minnesota and the United States. U.select enables students to immediately see how courses will fulfill degree requirements at the degree granting school.

U.select features include:

  • Course Descriptions: Access course descriptions directly from u.select or a u.select institution's Web site.
  • Academic Programs: Access information about the programs offered by a u.select institution.
  • Course Equivalency Guide: View how courses transfer from one institution to another.
  • Your Courses: Maintain a list of courses and grades for use in running planning guides. (requires user to create a free u.select user account)
  • Planning Guides: Run an unofficial planning guide (degree audit) to learn how the courses saved in "Your Courses" may transfer and apply to a degree program (requires user to create a free u.select user account).
  • Student Services: Access student services web sites, such as admissions, financial aid, counseling, etc.
NOTE: Information obtained through DARS and u.select should be considered unofficial and must be verified through the Records Department of the degree granting school.


Access u.select at www.uselectmn.org
Drop/Add Policy

Drop/Add Policy

Students may drop or add classes through the first five days of the term. Students may drop or add classes on-line or in person in the Student Service Centers. Post Secondary Enrollment Option (PSEO) students are required to obtain the signature of a college counselor in order to drop or add classes. Dropped courses do not appear on your transcript and do not impact academic standing. For "short term" courses, students may add or drop courses prior to the second (2nd) class session. Students who drop "short term" courses for which they received financial aid will be required to repay in accordance with federal and state repayment policies.
Grades

Grades

Transcripts reflect a student's educational progress at a college. Faculty members will communicate their course grading procedure in writing on the course syllabus. The semester GPA (grade point average) reflects current semester grades. The cumulative GPA reflects all courses/grades to date.

Quality points are used to calculate the GPA. A quality point is a value given to the grade based on the number of credits the grade is worth.

For example:
  • Calculation of quality points for a grade of A in a four credit course:
    4 credits x 4 points (4 points for an A) = 16 quality points
  • Calculation of quality points for a grade of A in a two credit course:
    2 credits x 4 points (4 points for an A) = 8 quality points
The semester GPA is calculated by adding all the quality points for the semester and dividing by the number of credits for the semester.

The cumulative GPA is calculated by adding all the quality points for all the courses to date and dividing by the number of credits to date.

The following grades/symbols are used by the College:
Letter Grade Quality point(s) Letter Grade Quality point(s)
A 4.00 C 2.00
A- 3.66 C- 1.66
B+ 3.33 D+ 1.33
B 3.00 D 1.00
B- 2.66 D- 0.66
C+ 2.33 F 0.00

 

The following grades do not affect grade point average but may affect satisfactory progress at the College:

  • P = Pass (is counted toward graduation requirements)
  • AU = Audit (allowed to attend and participate in course; no credit is earned)
  • W = Withdraw (calculated in course completion rate)
  • NC = No credit
  • I = Incomplete
Graduation Application

Graduation Application

Every student who wishes to earn a degree, diploma, or certificate must complete an Application for Graduation form. The Application for Graduation form is available from any Student Service Center, and the Placement and Graduate Services office, or on the Riverland Web site. The Registrar?s office will review the application and prepare records for graduation. For more information on graduation go to www.riverland.edu/placement

Information concerning graduation dates, ceremony, times, location, measuring for cap and gowns will be mailed to students who have applied and are eligible for graduation. Graduation lists will be posted in each building and information will also be posted on the facility bulletin boards and monitors.

Graduation Requirements

Graduation Requirements

Students are eligible for graduation when they have successfully fulfilled the program requirements for a certificate, diploma, or associate degree.

A minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.0 is required.

A 2.0 MnTC (Minnesota Transfer Curriculum) grade point average is required for recognition of a student's completion of the entire Minnesota Transfer Curriculum with or without completing an associate degree

To be eligible for a certificate, diploma, or associate degree, a student must earn at least 20 semester credits at Riverland. If other credits are earned from other Minnesota State Colleges and Universities institutions, at least 12 semester credits must be completed at Riverland.

Students entering Riverland will complete their work under the terms of the catalog in effect at the time of their first enrollment unless the time exceeds six years. Those graduating more than six years after the date of the first enrollment must meet the requirements stated in the catalog which is in effect the year in which graduation occurs, unless an exception is authorized. Students must complete an Application for Graduation and have it approved in the final semester of attendance. This application is required of all students even if they do not wish to participate in the commencement ceremony. Students with a cumulative grade point average of 3.25 - 3.74 will graduate with Distinction. Students who achieve a GPA of 3.75 or higher will graduate with High Distinction. All students are required to attend an "Graduation Express" session during their last term. Students are required to fulfill all financial obligations to the college before their certificate, diploma, or associate degree can be mailed to them.

Incomplete

Incomplete

At the instructor's discretion, students who have been unable to complete course requirements due to unusual circumstances may receive an incomplete ("I"). The student must arrange to satisfy the incomplete within 20 school days following the semester in which it is given. If the incomplete is not resolved, an F will be recorded on the student's transcript. An incomplete received in a prerequisite subject must be satisfied before the student may take the advanced course, unless permission is given by the instructor of the advanced course.
Registration Limits

Registration Limits

Students must have authorization from a counselor to register for more than 19 credits in a semester (seven credits summer session). The College reserves the right to withhold registration privileges from students with unpaid financial obligations to the college.
Student Status

Student Status

Student status is defined as follows:
  • Full-time = 12 or more credits
  • 1/2 time = 6-8 credits
  • 3/4 time = 9-11 credits
  • less than 1/2 time = 1-5 credits
Student status is different for students receiving financial aid from Minnesota financial aid programs. Minnesota financial aid programs consider 15 credits per semester a full-time student. A freshman is a student with fewer than 30 credits earned and a sophomore is a student with 31 or more semester credits earned. A student needs to take an average of 15 credits each semester to graduate in two years.
Transfer Guidelines

Transfer Guidelines

  1. Riverland Community College will consider acceptance of transfer credits from regionally or nationally accredited institutions. Transfer credit from nationally accredited schools recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) www.chea.org or the U.S. Department of Education www.ed.gov/admins/finaid/accred will be reviewed for transfer credit acceptance on a case by case basis. Institution accreditation can be viewed by going to: www.ed.gov/admins/finaid/accred/accreditation_pg6.html
  2. To receive a degree from Riverland Community College, a minimum of twenty semester credits of college-level courses must be taken at Riverland. For students transferring from other Minnesota State Colleges and Universities institutions, this number is reduced to 12 credits.
  3. A Minnesota Transfer Curriculum (MnTC) course completed at another Minnesota State Colleges and Universities College will be transferred even if Riverland does not offer similar courses or disciplines.
  4. Riverland shall accept Minnesota Transfer Curriculum courses, goals and the entire Minnesota Transfer Curriculum with the passing grades earned at the sending system college or university. A 2.0 MnTC GPA is required for recognition of a students' completion of the entire Minnesota Transfer Curriculum with or without completing an associate degree.
  5. College courses that are not part of the Minnesota Transfer Curriculum, in which a student has received a grade of A, B, C, or P will be considered for transfer. If a student has a cumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher, D's will be considered for transfer on a course by course basis. Riverland shall accept in transfer as electives up to 16 semester credits of occupational and/or professional courses which are not comparable or not equivalent to specific courses. College-level courses accepted in transfer by Riverland that are determined to be not comparable or not equivalent to a specific course shall be accepted as electives.
  6. Transfer credit grades will not be used in computing the student's overall GPA at Riverland. Only earned credits (not grade point credits or grade points) will be recorded on the official Riverland transcript. However, transfer grades will be included to compute their MnTC grade point average to ensure the student has completed the MnTC with a minimum GPA of 2.0
  7. Credits achieved through military training will be evaluated for transfer as specified in the Guide to the Evaluation of Educational Experiences in the Armed Services. Students should bring in their DD-214 discharge papers, Certificates of Training and/or military transcripts for evaluation.
  8. Comparability: Courses approved for transfer must be comparable in nature, content and level and match at least 75 percent of the content and goals of the course for which the student is seeking equivalent credit.
  9. Credit Life: General education, some general studies and elective credits shall have no transfer time limit. Credits for technical programs have a five-year life span unless otherwise approved by the Academic Dean. Science courses required for Health Science programs have a five-year life span unless otherwise approved by the Academic Dean.
  10. Equivalency/Conversion: The number of transfer credits granted per course shall not exceed the number granted by the originating institution.
  11. Repeated Courses: When a student transfers in courses and later successfully repeats a transferred course at Riverland, only credit from Riverland will be granted.
Transfer Student Rights

Transfer Student Rights

Transfer Students have the right to:
  • A clear, understandable statement of an institution's transfer policy.
  • A fair credit review and an explanation of why credits were or were not accepted.
  • A formal appeals process if unsatisfied with the transfer of credits.
The appeals process involves:
  • Completion of the Transfer Evaluation Appeal form.
  • Documentation to support the appeal (course syllabus, textbook, course description, etc.).
  • Review of documentation by Academic Dean and Registrar.
  • The written outcome of the appeal will be sent to the Student within 21 days.
  • Students that are not satisfied with the transfer appeal decision may appeal to the Senior Vice Chancellor of Academic and Student Affairs at the system level.
Transferring to Other Institutions

Transferring to Other Institutions

If students are currently enrolled in college and intend to transfer to another college, students are encouraged to:
  1. Develop and discuss plans with a Riverland Community College counselor.
  2. Call or visit the intended transfer college. Obtain a college catalog, transfer brochure, admissions information including program or major requirements and information about financial aid. Request transfer application materials.
  3. Make an appointment to talk with the transfer specialist and an advisor in the intended program to ask about course transfer and admissions criteria.
  4. Complete the Riverland Community College transcript request form found in the Student Service Center or online to have Riverland transcripts sent to the transfer institution. MnSCU institutions may be able to access your Riverland transcript electronically.
Withdrawing From a Course

Withdrawing From a Course

For full-term courses, students may withdraw after the fifth day of the semester and through the 60th day of fall and spring semester. "Short term" course have an adjusted withdraw schedule. Students may withdraw from a course in person or online. Withdrawn courses will appear on the transcript with a grade of "W". The student is responsible for 100 percent of the tuition and fees for courses withdrawn from. Withdrawing from a course will not affect the student's GPA. However, it will affect their completion rate. Faculty are required to submit a grade of "FW" for students that do not officially withdraw from the course but have stopped attending prior to the end of the term. A grade of "FW" will affect both the students' GPA and completion rate.
Withdrawing From the College

Withdrawing From the College

Withdrawn classes will appear on the transcript with a grade of "W." According to Minnesota State Colleges and Universities guidelines, students enrolled at Riverland who totally withdraw from classes during fall and spring semester are subject to the following refund policy:

During the first five class days of the semester there will be a 100 percent refund of tuition and fees.

Date of TOTAL Withdrawl Semester Refund Received
6th-10th day of term 75% refund
11th-15th day of term 50% refund
16th-20th day of term 25% refund
after the 20th day of term 0% refund

It is the student's responsibility to officially withdraw from college; the college does not assign a "W" grade for students who fail to officially withdraw.

If a student who receives Federal financial aid officially withdraws from all his/her classes or merely stops attending courses before 60 percent of the term is completed, the student will be required to repay a portion of his/her financial aid. The student's last date of attendance is determined by the date on the drop/add/withdraw form. If a student stops attending classes and does not notify the college, the student will receive "FW" grades for all registered courses and the student's last date of attendance will be reported by the students' instructors.

How to Apply For Financial Aid

How to Apply For Financial Aid

Step One: Students begin the process by applying for a PIN at www.pin.ed.gov.

What is a PIN?

A PIN is a Personal Identification Number that serves as the student and parent electronic signatures. You need a PIN in order to perform any of the following tasks:

  • Electronically sign the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) on the Web (both the dependent student and a parent need a PIN).
  • Check your application status
  • Make corrections to the application
  • Apply for student and parent loans online
  • Sign the master promissory note for federal student loans
  • Parent applying for loans online.

Step Two: Complete the Free Application for Student Aid (FAFSA). Apply at the website www.fafsa.gov. If using the electronic process is not an option for you, contact Financial Aid staff for a paper application, FAFSA worksheet, or call the Federal Processing Center at 1-800-433-3243.

Ability to Benefit (No GED or H.S. Diploma)

Ability to Benefit (No GED or H.S. Diploma)

Applicants seeking financial aid, who do not have a high school diploma or GED, must pass an independently administered test approved by the U.S. Secretary of Education. Documentation of having passed the approved test will be required before the applicant will be considered eligible to receive financial aid.
Allis Grant

Allis Grant

 The Alliss Grant is a grant opportunity designed to help adult learners begin college or return to college. The grant is not based on family income and is available to all Minnesota community college students who qualify. Grants are available to start college any term. The grant provides payment of tuition for one course, up to five semester credits. To qualify, the selected course must be part of an Associate in Arts (A.A.) or Associate in Science (A.S.) degree program. To learn more about the Alliss Grant go to http://www.riverland.edu/fa/alliss-grant.cfm
College Work Study Program

College Work Study Program

The Federal and State work-study programs provide on and off-campus jobs to eligible students. Students who are enrolled at least half-time may be eligible for work-study positions. To learn more about the work study program go to http://www.riverland.edu/fa/workstudy.cfm

To secure work-study positions,

  • Check the job postings on our Riverland Web site at www.riverland.edu.
  • Contact the work-site supervisor to set up an interview.
  • When you have obtained a work-study position, complete the Work-Study Agreement which is available in the Financial Aid Office. The form must be signed by the student and supervisor and returned to the Financial Aid Office before you begin work.
Federal Pell Grant

Federal Pell Grant

This federal program provides grants for students who meet the established eligibility and need criteria. Grants range from $659- $5,550 annually. Students must have eligibility for and enroll for at least one credit by the fifth day of the semester to qualify for the grant for that semester. If a student registers for classes after the fifth day of the semester, it will not result in an increase of the Pell Grant for that semester. If a student adds classes after the fifth day of the semester, no additional aid will be disbursed for the increase of class load.
Federal Stafford Subsidized Loan

Federal Stafford Subsidized Loan

Students, who qualify, may borrow up to $1,750 per semester as a freshman (0-30 credits) and $2,250 per semester as a sophomore (31+ credits). This is a fixed interest rate of 4.5 percent. Repayments begin six months after a student completes school or drops below half-time status. All students are required to attend an "Exit Counseling" session during their last term.
Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant

Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant

This grant is limited to students who demonstrate high financial need. Awarding preference is given to students who receive a Federal Pell Grant. A student may receive up to $600 per year.
Financial Aid Disbursements and Awards

Financial Aid Disbursements and Awards

Financial aid disbursements occur on the 11th day of each semester (sixth day for summer session). A check disbursement schedule will be posted on each campus. If your financial aid awards exceed your tuition, fee, book, and equipment charges for the semester, any excess funds will be awarded to your in the form of a financial aid check on the 11th day of the semester. After this initial award date, financial aid checks are prepared each week and are mailed to students every Wednesday of the semester.
If your charges exceed your financial aid awards, you must make arrangements to pay the
balance of your tuition and fees by the 11th day of the semester. The Business Office will
accept cash, check, credit cards, or a payment plan. Students maintain their financial aid eligibility by remaining in enrolled and attending their classes on a regular basis. In terms of student loan eligibility, students must remain enrolled in six credits each semester.

To avoid financial aid overpayments (which must be repaid immediately) and overcharges on your account, you must drop your classes by the end of business on the fifth day of the semester if you should decide not to attend Riverland for the semester.

Financial Aid Adjustments
If you decide to add a course after the fifth day drop/add period, Pell and State Grant awards cannot be adjusted for the increase in credits. All enrollment changes must be made by the fifth day of the semester. If one of your classes is dropped from your schedule due to a lack of enrollment, your financial aid awards will be adjusted, usually with a loss of financial aid. Your class schedule must be firm and you should make all schedule changes by the fifth day of the semester to avoid loss or reduction of financial aid awards.

Financial Aid Refunds

If a student who receives Federal financial aid officially withdraws from all his/her classes or merely stops attending classes before 60 percent of the term is completed, the student will be required to repay a portion of his/her financial aid. The student's last date of attendance is determined by the date on the drop/add/withdraw form. If a student stops attending classes and does not notify the college, the student will receive "F" grades for all registered courses and the student's last date of attendance will be reported by the students' instructors.

Financial Aid Adjustments

Financial Aid Adjustments

If you decide to add a course after the fifth day drop/add period, Pell and State Grant awards cannot be adjusted for the increase in credits. All enrollment changes must be made by the fifth day of the semester. If one of your classes is dropped from your schedule due to a lack of enrollment, your financial aid awards will be adjusted, usually with a loss of financial aid. Your class schedule must be firm and you should make all schedule changes by the fifth day of the semester to avoid loss or reduction of financial aid awards.
Financial Aid Transfer to Riverland Community College

Financial Aid Transfer to Riverland Community College

The financial aid office would like to provide you with information to make your mid-year transfer from one school to another as simple as possible.
  • Make sure that Riverland Community College's school code 002335 is on your FAFSA, or contact the Federal Processing Center at 1-800-433-3243.
  • Make sure you respond quickly to any correspondence you receive from the Financial Aid Office.
  • Once everything needed to complete your file has been received, an award letter will be generated. This document will indicate the types of aid for which you are eligible.
  • Do not assume that you will automatically have the same eligibility at Riverland Community College. You may have used up all or a portion of your financial aid at another institution. It is important that you revise your financial aid application to add our college code and receive an award letter that will show your eligibility at Riverland Community College.
  • Loans do not transfer from one school to another. You will need to have a complete financial aid file AND have received an award letter before you can apply for any type of student loan at Riverland Community College.
  • Make sure you have a grade transcript sent to the financial aid office so we can determine your state grant eligibility at Riverland Community College.
  • All students are required to attend an "Exit Counseling" session during their last term.
Minnesota Non-AFDC Child Care Grant

Minnesota Non-AFDC Child Care Grant

Awards are based on the number of credits (six credits minimum) for which a student is enrolled, cost per hour, number of hours and number of children under the age of 13 needing child care. Applications are available from Financial Aid Student Service Representatives on each campus.
Minnesota G.I. Bill

Minnesota G.I. Bill

In order to qualify for the GI program the student must:
  • Be a veteran who is serving or has served honorably in the U.S. armed forces on or after September 11, 2001.
  • Non-veteran who served honorably in the Minnesota National Guard (or any other active or reserve component of the U.S. armed forces) on or after September 11,2001.
  • Or a surviving spouse or dependent of a person has has served in the military at any time on or after September 11, 2001, and who has died as a direct result of military service, or who has total or permanent disability.
Minnesota State Grant

Minnesota State Grant

In order for a student to be considered for the State Grant Program in a given semester, the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) must be received by the Federal Processing Center within the first 30 days of the semester start date. Eligibility requirements of this grant are similar to the Federal Pell Grant. It is available to Minnesota residents only. The maximum combined Pell and State Grant is approximately, $5,369. Students must be enrolled for at least three credits during a semester to qualify.

Minnesota State Grant programs define "enrollment status" differently from federal programs. In order to receive a full State Grant, students must be enrolled for 15 credits per semester. Grant amounts will be adjusted when students are enrolled for fewer then 15 credits.

Non-Need Based Student Loan

Non-Need Based Student Loan

For further financial assistance, students may pursue the Federal Unsubsidized Stafford Loan, Federal PLUS Loan, or the Minnesota Self Loan. Applications for Federal loans are available from the College. SELF loan applications are available from the College. Payment or capitalization of interest on the loans is required while attending college. All students are required to attend a "Loan Exit Counseling" session during their last term.
Professional Judgment

Professional Judgment

 Students who have expenses or information not included in the Free Application for Federal Student Aid which will affect their ability to pay for college should contact a Financial Aid Office. "Expenses" could include elementary and high school tuition and high medical expenses not covered by insurance. Unemployment, loss of benefits, death and divorce are situations that would change a student's ability to pay college costs. Students may also request to be considered independent of their parents. Two letters explaining the change in financial status and supporting documentation is required.

Verification Process

Verification Process

The Department of Education, or Riverland Community College, may select your application for review which is a process called verification. In this process, Riverland Community College will be comparing information from your financial aid application with the signed copies of your federal income tax return.
Veteran's Education Benefits

Veteran's Education Benefits

Riverland Community College acts as a liaison with the Veterans? Administration for individuals who wish to utilize their veteran's benefits. Forms to apply for veteran education benefits may be obtained by contacting the registrar at Riverland or apply online at www.gibill.va.gov. Applications should be completed 8-10 weeks prior to the term for which benefits are requested.

Basic information about educational benefits programs administered by the US Dept of Veteran Affairs is found online at www.gibill.va.gov by selecting Education Benefits. You may also call 1-888-442-4551 and speak with a representative.

Eligible persons are reminded that the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs will not pay benefits for repeated or audited courses. In addition, benefits for short courses--those that do not meet for the entire term--will be paid for only the days that the class meets.

Minnesota Achieve Scholarship

Minnesota Achieve Scholarship

The Minnesota Achieve Scholarship provides financial assistance to eligible Minnesota students who complete a qualifying secondary school program and are attending a Minnesota institution. To be eligible the student must:
  • Graduate from high school after January 1, 2008; and
  • Be a student from a family with an adjusted gross income of less than $75,000 for the previous tax year (this limit applies to dependent and independent students.) and
  • Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen; and
  • Meet the definition of Minnesota resident used for state financial aid programs; and
  • Apply no later than 30 days after the term starts; and
  • Use the scholarship within four years after high school graduation; and
  • Take and receive at least a grade of C for courses that comprise one of the rigorous secondary school programs of study in a high school or in a home-school setting
Option 1:
  • Four years of English;
  • Three years of math (including Algebra I and a higher level course such as Algebra II, geometry, or data analysis and statistics);
  • Three years of science (including at least two courses from biology, chemistry or physics);
  • Three years of social studies; and
  • One year of a foreign language.
Option 2:
  • Four years of language arts;
  • Three years of math, including one year of geometry and two years of algebra, one of which is intermediate or advanced algebra;
  • Three years of science including one year each of a biological and physical science;
  • Three years of social studies; and
  • Two years of a single foreign language.

Option 3: Two or more Advanced Placement (AP) or International Baccalaureate (IB) courses and test scores. This program requires a minimum of two Advanced Placement (AP) or International Baccalaureate (IB) courses in high school and a minimum passing score on the exams for those classes. Students must score 3 or higher on AP exams and 4 or higher on IB exams.

Option 4: Minnesota Dual Credit Program. With a passing grade of "B" or better: High School students taking Both a math course (Algebra 2 level or higher) AND a science course (Biology, Chemistry, or Physics) under the Post-Secondary Enrollment Options (PSEO) program (worth a total of a least 6 college credits) shall meet the requirement.

Eligible students can receive a $1,200 award to be paid in two equal payments with second payment made after completion of the first term.














Activities

Intercollegiate Athletics and Intramural Programming

Intercollegiate Athletics and Intramural Programming

The College has a full intercollegiate program. Men participate in golf, basketball, baseball and tennis; women in baseball, volleyball, basketball, softball and soccer. All men's and women's programs are members of both Minnesota Community College Conference and the National Junior College Athletic Association. All teams have the opportunity to qualify for and participate in the respective state tournaments for each sport.

To be eligible to participate in athletics, a student must successfully complete 12 credits during the semester in which they are competing and maintain a 1.75 GPA. Prior to a second season of participation, the athlete must pass at least 24 credits with a 2.0 cumulative grade point average. The college requires all athletes to pass a physical examination and carry official college student accident insurance or have similar protection under a family policy.

Athletic Director: David Lillemon

For more information on the Riverland Athletic Department check this web site:
http://www.riverland.edu/athletics/index.cfm

 

Music

Music

Phi Theta Kappa

Phi Theta Kappa

Student Ambassadors

Student Ambassadors

Theatre

Theatre

The Sound of Music, The Oedipus Plays of Sophocles, Carousel, You?re a Good Man Charlie Brown, The Laramie Project, Phantom and The Elephant Man are just a few of the plays produced at Riverland Community College over the past few years. Plays produced vary from classical tragedy to modern comedy and from full-scale musicals with a cast of 40 or more to intimate plays with a cast of six. Students are encouraged to get involved in all areas of theatre productions, including, but not limited to, acting, stage managing, set building and painting.

Four major productions a year make this a very active and exciting department. No experience is necessary and all Riverland students are welcome to participate on and off stage.


http://www.riverland.edu/theatre/index.cfm

Organizations

Accent - Literary Magazine

Accent - Literary Magazin>

http://rvrcm.riverland.edu/Accent2009/blog/
Amnesty International

Amnesty International

Founded in London in 1961, Amnesty International is a Nobel Prize-winning grassroots activist organization with over 1.8 million members worldwide. Amnesty International undertakes research and action focused on preventing and ending grave abuses of the rights to physical and mental integrity, freedom of conscience and expression, and freedom from discrimination, within the context of its work to promote all human rights. The Riverland Community College chapter of Amnesty focuses on educating the community about human rights issues and completing actions that will stop these abuses.

Advisor: Marie Lechelt, 507-433-0379
marie.lechelt@riverland.edu

 

Criminal Justice Society

Criminal Justice Society

Corrections, Law Enforcement and other students interested in the Criminal Justice System may join this organization. The philosophy and purpose of the Criminal Justice Society is to promote, inform and educate student members, applying critical thinking issues that pertain to the Criminal Justice System our community, state and country. Advisor: Steve Wald

Advisor: Steve Wald

Human Services Club (DEEDS)

Human Services Club (DEEDS)

Multi-Cultural Club

Multi-Cultural Club

 The Club provides students with opportunities to learn about diverse cultures, food, music and traditions and will provide support both educationally and socially while students are far from home. All Riverland Community College students may become members of the International Club, which meets twice each month during the academic school year.

Club members may be active in community service projects, college forums, presentations in public schools and service clubs, and just having fun during field trip excursions, club parties and meetings. The Multi-Cultural Club is structured with students providing leadership through elected club positions of President, Vice President and Secretary.

Advisors: Mel Morem, mmorem@riverland.edu
R.I.O.T (Righteous Invasion of Truth - Christian Fellowship)

R.I.O.T (Righteous Invasion of Truth - Christian Fellowship)

(Righteous Invasion of Truth-Christian Fellowship) Students who share an interest in Christianity as a way of life meet for discussion, prayer, Bible study and social activities. RIOT is associated with South Central Minnesota Youth for Christ.

Advisor: Debra Schnell & Diann Pflaum
Riverland Community Gay - Straight Alliance (RCGSA)

Riverland Community Gay - Straight Alliance (RCGSA)

RCGSA - Bridging the Gap The RCGSA is open to all students, faculty, and staff who are interested in supporting and advocating for the GLBTQ (Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgendered, Questioning) community.

www.riverland.edu/rcgsa/
Riverland Gaming Club

Riverland Gaming Club

The Riverland Gaming Club is dedicated to providing free and/or inexpensive entertainment to students in the form of gaming parties using multiple video game formats and platforms. This Organization will provide LAN-based games and tournaments on a regular basis to all students attending Riverland. All gaming systems will be owned by the members in order to keep operating costs down.

Advisor: Doc Andree, randree@riverland.edu
SkillsUSA (Albert Lea and Austin Chapters)

SkillsUSA (Albert Lea and Austin Chapters)

 SkillsUSA-VICA is a professional student organization for students in trade, industrial, technical or health programs. Members exchange ideas, discuss problems and work together toward common goals. SkillsUSA-VICA offers students a chance to gain recognition for themselves, their program and the College through competition in occupational skill areas and leadership development contests.

Albert Lea Advisors:
Mike Bute, mike.bute@riverland.edu
Jason Merritt,jason.merritt@riverland.edu
Melissa Diegnau, Melissa.Diegnau@riverland.edu

Austin Advisors:
Larry Peterson, Larry.Peterson@riverland.edu
Janelle Unverzagt,Janelle.Unverzagt@riverland.edu

Student Senate (Albert Lea, Austin Chapters)

Student Senate (Albert Lea, Austin Chapters)

Each campus has a student governing body called the Student Senate. Senate representatives are elected in the fall and plan a variety of activities throughout the year. The Senate coordinates legislative activities that affect students and provide assistance to other campus organizations. The role of the senators is to be the primary communication link between the administration and the student community. The Senate offers an opportunity to develop leadership, civic awareness, community involvement and basic understanding of human relations. www.riverland.edu/studentsenate
Tuition, Fees, and College Costs

Tuition, Fees, and College Costs

Tuition and fees are subject to change after consultation with the Student Senates. A summary of college tuition and fees is available at any Student Service Center.

View Tuition and Fees

Tuition Policy

Tuition Policy

  • Tuition is due approximately two weeks before the start of each semester. The automated system will drop students who have not arranged to pay their tuition by those dates.
  • Students may defer payment of tuition and books against financial aid awards and/or agency funding. Any balance remaining after aid awards are applied to tuition must be paid according to the College’s tuition policy.
  • Students may pay tuition in installments.  Arrangements must be made online through FACTS/NELNET http://www.riverland.edu/tuition/payment-plan.cfm prior to starting classes. 
  • Students with outstanding debts at the College will not be allowed to register for classes and may have certificates of completion, diplomas, grades and transcripts held until the account is settled.
  • Programs or classes with unusually high costs may be subject to higher tuition rates than normally charged to students.





Tuition Waiver Policy

Tuition Waiver Policy

The President or his designee may waive tuition and fee balances owed to the college for the following reasons:
  • Articulation agreements,
  • College error,
  • Course conditions*,
  • Death of a student,
  • Employee benefit provided by a bargaining agreement,
  • Employment related condition,
  • Medical reasons,
  • Military deployment,
  • Natural disasters or other situations beyond the control of the campus.
  • Significant personal crisis,
  • Student Leader Stipend.

*A course condition exists when the location or timing of the course results in the student not being able to access the instruction intended by the tuition and fees.

A student may request a tuition waiver by completing a petition














Ability to Benefit - An assessment administered to students who have not earned a high school diploma or GED.  The results of the assessment are used to determine college admission and financial aid eligibility.

Academic Audit - Advising information illustrating a student's progress in fulfilling the graduation requirements of their chosen degree program.

Accuplacer - Another name for the Computerized Placement Test. It is a math, English, and reading assessment to determine course placement.

Admission- Process to obtain acceptance to the college and to register for classes

Alliss Grant - A grant for students who have not been enrolled either a  high school or college class in at least seven years and who have not earned a Bachelor's degree and have not applied for financial aid.  The Alliss grant covers the cost of tuition not to exceed five credits.

Alternative Loan - A private loan, possibly at a higher interest rate, used to pay for college expenses.

Application for Graduation- A form students must complete to notify the Placement and Graduate Services Office that they will complete the requirements of their program and qualify for graduation.

Apply - To seek admission to a college.

Audit a Course - A student may choose to pay tuition to attend a course, but will not receive a grade or earn credit for the course.

Completion Rate - Percentage of credits successfully completed by a student. The college expects at least a 67 percent completion rate each semester.

Consortium Agreement - Contract between two colleges/universities recognizing the registration of a student at each site for financial aid purposes.  It also certifies only one of the two colleges will administer financial aid for the student.

CPT - Computerized Placement Test.  The online Accuplacer assessment used for proper course placement. (See Accuplacer definition.)

Cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA) - A student's summary or average grade of all the courses he or she has taken at a college.

Current Student - A student who attended Riverland last semester and will enroll the following semester.

Deferment - The ability to delay payment of college tuition and/or books based on pending financial aid or funding.

Dependent Student - A status assigned for financial aid purposes to students who are typically 24 years of age and younger.  These students report their own information and their parent’s information when applying for financial aid.

Disability Services- Services for students with a documented disability.

Down Payment - 15% or $300.00, whichever is less, of tuition owed to hold classes and prevent being dropped for nonpayment.

Drop - A student may choose to remove a class from his or her schedule during the first five days of the semester.  A drop is not recorded on the student’s transcript.

Drop for nonpayment - A student has not met the payment criteria necessary to remain enrolled in their classes and an administrative drop is done to remove all classes.

Enrollment Status - Categories used to designate students, such as Current, Full-Time, Half-Time, New, Returning, Three-Quarter Time and Transfer

Expected Family Contribution (EFC) - The amount of financial help that a student’s family is expected to contribute toward the student’s college expenses.

FAFSA - Free Application for Federal Student Aid. It is the primary application used to determine your state and federal eligibility for financial aid.

Financial Aid - Funds awarded to pay for educational expenses, offered in the forms of Grants, Loans, Scholarships, and Work-Study

Financial Aid Award Notice - A summary of the various financial aid programs a student is qualified to receive.

Financial Aid Disbursement - The distribution of financial aid payments to qualifying students.

Financial Need - A student’s eligibility for financial aid and is the difference between the cost of attending the college minus what the family/student are expected to contribute to the cost.

Full-Time Student - A student who is enrolled in twelve or more credits per semester.

Grade Point Average (GPA) - The grade point average is calculated by dividing the total number of grade points earned by the total number of GPA credits attempted.  Only grades of A, B, C, D, and F are included in the GPA calculation. A student’s cumulative GPA reflects all courses he or she has taken and all grades earned to date.

Grant - Financial aid that is a gift of funds to help pay for college expenses.

Half-Time Student - A student enrolled in six (6) to eight (8) credits per semester.

Independent Student - One who reports only his or her income information (and that of a spouse, if the student is married) when applying for student aid.  Students who are 24 years of age or older as of Dec. 31 of the current academic year are automatically considered independent.

Late Fee - A one time, per semester $50.00 late fee is assessed to any account that is past due.

Major - The program of study that a student has declared.

MnSCU-Minnesota State Colleges and Universities.

Need Analysis - A formula used to determine the expected family financial contribution toward the cost of attending college.  It is based on family information, including income, assets, and number of members.

Non-Resident Student - A student who has not lived in Minnesota the past 12 months.

Parent Contribution - The financial support that your parent(s) is/are expected to
contribute toward your educational expenses.

Past Due - Any date after the published tuition due date each semester.

Payment Plan- A plan that allows a student to pay for tuition and fees in installments within the semester, with a maximum timeframe of five months.

Pell Grant and Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG) - A federal grant program based on need for those students with the lowest expected family contribution (EFC).

Probation - A status for students who do not meet one or more of the following standards for satisfactory academic progress: 2.0 cumulative grade point average.  67% course completion rate, based on the ratio of credits earned to the cumulative credits attempted, or the 150% maximum time frame for degree completion.

PSEO - Post Secondary Education Option

Reciprocity - An arrangement for students from South Dakota, North Dakota and
Wisconsin to pay tuition at rates comparable to in-state students.

Register - To sign up for classes.

Returning Student - A student who previously attended Riverland an is re-enrolling after an absence of a least one semester.

Satisfactory Academic Progress- Based on three measures cumulative grade point average of 2.0, course completion rate of 67%, (based on comparing the total number of credits earned with the total number of credits attempted, and a 150% maximum time frame for degree completion.)

Short Term Courses -  Classes that do not meet through out an entire term.  They either start after the term begins, or end before the term is finished.

Student Loan - Financial aid that must be repaid by the student.

Student Service Center - Centers located in Albert Lea, Austin-East, and at the Owatonna
College and University Center that provide one-stop services to students in the areas of
business services, counseling, financial aid, and registration services.

Student Success Center - A student resource center that provides a second line of academic support for all Riverland Students.  Assessment, disability, and tutoring services are provided at no cost to Riverland students. (*Except for the CPT retest fee)

Subsidized Loan - A federal loan program that defers interest for qualifying students as long as they remain enrolled at least half-time (six credits).

Suspension - An academic and/or financial aid status where a student has lost their eligibility to receive financial aid and/or the permission to register for classes.

TEAS V - Test of Essential Academic Skills V - nursing entrance examination.

Three-Quarter Time Student - A student enrolled in nine (9) to eleven (11) credits.

Total Withdrawl - Student requests to remove all courses from their schedule and may be eligible for a partial refund if completed within the first four weeks of the semester.  The student will receive W's for grades.

Transfer Student - A student who has earned credits from a previously attending college and whose credits have been accepted into his or her Riverland major.

Unsubsidized Loan - A federal loan program that assesses interest while the student is enrolled.

Verification - The process of documenting information reported on the FAFSA.

West Center - A student service area located in the Austin-West building where counseling,  and tutoring services are offered.

Withdrawal - When a student chooses to discontinue a course after the drop/add period (fifth semester day) but before the withdrawal deadline (sixtieth semester day).  Students withdraw from the class by completing a Drop/Add/Withdraw form or through their e-services account.  The student will receive a "W" for a grade.  No refunds are granted for partial withdrawals.

Work-study - A student employment program. Students are eligible for employment based
on their application for financial aid.