Disbursements & Refund

Once you have been awarded, your financial aid will be credited and disbursed to your student account to pay for your tuition and any applicable fees. If there is an excess of funds, a refund will be issued to you. Charges, credits, and refunds (if applicable) can all be viewed in Self-Service. Refunds are issued as a direct deposit/e-refund (recommended) or as a check, mailed to the address on file.

What does “disbursement of federal financial aid” mean?

Disbursement is the releasing and payment of federal financial aid and scholarship funds to your CEI account.

  • All federal aid eligibility criteria must be met for your financial aid to be released to your student account. All financial aid awards, except Work-Study, are applied to your account.
  • The earliest your aid can be disbursed toward your student fees is 10 days prior to your first day of class (5 days prior to summer classes).
  • Students that do not have financial aid ready for the first disbursement, CEI must confirm attendance of all your courses during the first 10 days, before releasing the funds.
  • Financial aid funds are disbursed in equal installments at the first of each semester, for example, Fall and Spring semesters. If a student only attends one semester, disbursement of loans will be made in two equal disbursements, one at the beginning of the semester and one halfway through the semester. This is only applicable for students attending the Spring or Summer only.
  • After the first disbursement has been applied, the next disbursement occurs after our attendance verification process. Attendance verification generally takes 3 weeks to complete, after the first day of class, before financial aid can be released.

What is a refund? If applicable, when will I see my refund?

If the total financial aid funds exceed your total charges, a refund will be issued to you. Refunds are issued as a direct deposit/e-refund (recommended) or as a check, mailed to the address on file.

  • Refunds will occur 5-7 business days after the funds have disbursed depending on your selected refund preference.
  • Important - If you do not complete the financial aid application process by the financial aid priority deadline, your refund may not be processed until after attendance verification is completed.
  • Questions concerning the status of your refund should be referred to the cashier at 524-3000 ext. 3

Are there any holds for loan borrowers?

First-time borrowers who are first-time CEI students will have to wait 30 days from the beginning of the semester before their loan funds will be disbursed.

  • Loans will be disbursed in two disbursements (Fall-Spring). If attending only one semester, loans will be disbursed in two disbursements within that semester (Spring-Summer). The first disbursement will be at the beginning of the term and the second at mid-terms.
  • If you qualify for and accept loans, loan proceeds are transmitted to the CEI Business Office and applied directly to the student's school account. Remaining funds will be refunded to the student.
  • The Entrance Counseling and Master promissory Note is required for loans to disburse.

Disbursement Schedule for 2023-2024

Term 1st Disbursement  2nd Disbursement after attendance is verified 30-Day Delay* Disbursement 2nd loan disbursement -attending only Spring or only Summer
Fall 2023 August 11 September 5 September 21 NA
Spring 2024 December 29 January 23 February 8 March 2
Summer 2024 May 29 June 18 July 2 July 1
*Automatic 30-day delayed disbursement for first-time loan borrowers.

Late Start Courses & Disbursements

If you register for a late start course (Block B), you may not receive a disbursement until your attendance has been verified in those course(s).

How do I view my tuition charges and student account?

To view your charges and the financial aid you have accepted, log into your student Self-Service, select “Student Account Information”. Click on the “Account Activity” and select the correct term.

Account Activity displays the following:

  • Charges - Your CEI tuition and applicable fees
  • Balance - Your charges minus financial aid. If your aid exceeds your charges, your balance displays the amount of refund you will receive as a negative amount. If your aid does not exceed your charges, your balance displays your outstanding balance.
  • Financial Aid - The total amount of your accepted financial aid.
    • This will include a breakdown of the: award name, type, and amount. It will also display the amount that has been disbursed to your account or the amount that is anticipated to be disbursed.

NOTE: Aid offers are based on the number of required credits a student is enrolled in. If students make changes in their course load, after disbursement, they will be responsible for any additional tuition and fees. 

Financial aid policies and procedures are subject to change without notice to assure compliance with federal regulations.

John E. Christofferson
Multi-Purpose Building

Room 353
Phone: (208) 524-3000
Fax: (208) 525-7026