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Summer Hawk Tuition Grant

First-year, first-time students entering the university as of Summer 2013 are automatically eligible for the Summer Hawk Tuition Grant, which can offset tuition costs for up to 12 semester hours during one summer session at Iowa.

The grant awards Iowa residents a scholarship to cover tuition charges for up to 12 credit hours of summer courses.  Non-residents registered for more than 4 semester hours receive the difference between resident and nonresident tuition.

The value of the scholarship depends on the actual number of hours for which a student enrolls during a single summer. It must be used within four years of admission and includes the summer after the fourth year. The grant must be used before you graduate, even if you graduate prior to the summer after your fourth year of enrollment.
Here are answers to some frequently asked questions.

What does the grant cover?

The grant covers tuition (up to 12 semester hours) for a resident student and the difference between non-resident and resident tuition for a non-resident students registered for more than 4 s.h. This includes differential tuition for the Colleges of Business, Engineering, and Nursing. Financial need is not required to make use of this grant.

What is not covered by the grant?

Students are still responsible for all mandatory fees, course fees, and miscellaneous fees associated with enrollment.

The grant does not cover study abroad, internships, or other programs IF a fee is paid to an outside entity, even if that fee is billed as tuition.

How will I know if my study abroad program qualifies?

Typically, programs that are reciprocal exchange programs will qualify for the grant. Students in reciprocal exchange programs enroll in a foreign university while paying Iowa tuition and fees. The following link will allow you to search for this type of program:

You can use this as a starting point. However, it's very important that you work closely with an advisor in the Study Abroad office well in advance of the summer you plan to use the grant, so you can be sure the program you are considering qualifies. Also, it's important to remember that for qualifying programs, the grant covers tuition only and not the fees associated with these programs.

Because the number of study abroad programs that qualify for the grant is limited, students might want to consider using the grant to take academic courses at Iowa during a summer in order to free up a fall or spring semester or academic year for study abroad.

How will I know if my internship qualifies?

There are many different types of internships. Some have their administrative home in academic departments or colleges. Others are offered through the Pomerantz Career Center. If you are doing an internship through the Pomerantz Career Center, they can help you to determine whether your internship will be covered by the grant. They can be contacted at If your internship is offered through an academic department, you can consult with the Billing Office to determine whether your internship will be covered. For more information go to

When should I use my grant?

This is a question that you should explore with your academic advisor. Few students take summer classes at the University after their first year; that summer often is a good time to work, relax, or reconnect with family and friends. In most cases, the grant is typically best used once you have decided on your major and have a definite plan for graduation.

Some things to consider in deciding which summer session to use the grant:

  • What courses are offered during the summer and how would they best fit into a four-year graduation plan?
  • How can you maximize the use of the grant? Which summer would be a good one to get into high demand courses or allow you to catch up or get ahead on required courses?
  • How can you use the tuition grant without having to pay for extra housing?
    • Most off-campus leases in Iowa City are for 12 month periods, so you end up paying for the summer months even if you won't be in town. If you plan to live off-campus at some point in the future, it might make sense to wait to use your grant until you have an off-campus residence.
    • If you need to return home each summer, you may choose on-line, web based courses through our Division of Continuing Education. The choices for courses through this program will be more limited so you will need to plan carefully with your academic advisor.

Of course, every student's needs are different; your academic advisor is in the best position to help you plan for when you should use the grant.

Are there any rules I need to be aware of to be eligible for the grant?

You must have enrolled and paid tuition as a full-time undergraduate student for each of the previous two semesters (fall and spring) in order to qualify for the Summer Hawk Tuition Grant.

If I participate in a study abroad program during the fall or spring semester, prior to the summer that I want to use the grant, does that semester count as being enrolled in order to qualify for the grant the following summer?

Yes, participating in a study abroad program during fall or spring semester will count as being enrolled in order to qualify for the grant the following summer.

If I want to attend summer school part-time for two years, can I use the grant that way?

No. The grant can only be used during one summer, for up to 12 credit hours.

What are the maximum number of hours I can take during the summer? Shouldn't I take the maximum number of hours to get the most out of the grant?

While students are eligible to enroll in up to 12 semester hours during the summer, students typically enroll in 2 or possibly 3 classes. You'll want to discuss your plan with your academic advisor. Remember that summer courses are more intensive and the work is compressed into a much tighter time frame. Here are some things to consider when determining how many hours in which to enroll:

  • Which courses you will be taking. It's important to be realistic about how much homework you will have. Will there be a heavy reading and writing load? You also need to be realistic about how quickly material may be covered and how much studying you will need to do each day.
  • What else you are doing over the summer. Will you be working or volunteering along with taking classes?
  • How the courses you wish to take overlap within the various summer sessions. You will likely have more room for possible course combinations if you spread your registration over several of the sessions.

This table gives you some recommendations for structuring your enrollments among the various summer sessions:


Four Week

Six Week-1 5/19-6/27

Eight Week

Six Week-2

Twelve Week*

No more than 4 semester hours in the 4 week session

No more than 7 semester hours between these two sessions

No more than 9 semester hours between these two sessions

No more than 12 semester hours between all sessions combined

*The 12 Week session is primarily for Guided Independent Study (GIS) Courses.

Can I use the grant to take on-line courses?

Yes, that is possible. There are three types of on-line courses:

  • Courses that have specific due dates for assignments and tests and the final exam. ISIS lists these as "Delivery Mode: Web". Section numbers for these courses are "EXW".
  • Self-paced courses that do not have structured dates or deadlines for assignments, tests and the final exam. ISIS lists these as "Delivery Mode: Self-paced/Web (GIS)". Section numbers for these courses are "EXZ".
  • Workshop courses coded as WK*. Workshop fees are charged separately from tuition, and those fees will not be covered by the grant.

We recommend enrollment in no more than two "Self-paced (GIS)" courses. Students often find it challenging to stay on top of their coursework without specific due dates and deadlines to motivate them, resulting in possible grades of "Incomplete". These summer courses must then be completed during the fall semester, which may affect the time students can commit to their fall coursework.

Is housing available during the summer session?

Arranging summer housing is the responsibility of each student. There will be a limited number of double and single rooms available in Currier Hall during the summer; students may contract for the entire summer or for one or more summer sessions offered. Preference will be given to students who had a spring housing contract and/or will have a fall housing contract. Contact University Housing & Dining (4141 Burge Hall, 319-335-3000) for further information.

If you wish to live off-campus and need to find temporary summer quarters, you may want to look for a summer sub-lease. The University's Off-Campus Housing Service may be helpful in searching for possible subleases.

How and when do I tell you I want to use the grant?

Each spring, you will be eligible to register for summer and fall classes. If you decide to register for summer classes, the University will check to see if you are eligible to receive the grant. If you are, you'll be asked through ISIS whether you want to use the grant for that summer's registration. If you designate "yes", the billing office will check to be sure that the courses you have registered for qualify for the grant. If they do, the grant will automatically be applied to your summer tuition bill.

You must indicate your intention to use the grant prior to the first day of the earliest session for which you are enrolled.

What if I register late or change my mind about my schedule after I've registered?

The answer to this question depends on your particular circumstances. The number of classes you have, which sessions they are offered in, as well as the date on which you make that decision, may affect the grant. If you change your mind about your summer registration, work with the University Billing Office to learn how this may impact your summer tuition bill.

If I decide to withdraw after classes have begun, resulting in a charge of a percentage of the tuition, can that be paid by the Hawk grant?

Yes, but this would count as your one and only summer using the grant. You would not get a grant refund for any unused portion of the tuition. In this case, you will need to decide whether or not it is better to pay that percentage of tuition out of pocket so that you can make better use of the grant in a subsequent summer.

If I am a non-resident student and register for 0-4 credit hours, there is no difference between the in-state and out-of-state tuition rate. Does this mean I get free tuition?

No, in this case you would end up paying the tuition, with no benefit from the grant. If you are a non-resident student, you should plan to use the grant when you will be enrolling in more than 4 semester hours.

How do I know which courses will be offered in the summer? When will I register?

Currently, summer course offerings appear on ISIS in February and registration for summer and fall occurs in late April.

To get an idea of what is offered in the summer prior to them coming up on ISIS in February, you can look at previous summer offerings on ISIS and use those to predict possible, future summer course offerings.

Please note that course offerings may vary from year to year, but the University strives to continually offer summer seats in highly enrolled courses.

Will I be able to get financial aid during the summer that I use the grant?

The Summer Hawk Grant applies to tuition only. You may be eligible to apply for summer loans and/or Work-Study to cover other costs of attendance for summer. Federal loans have annual limits. You may have exhausted these limits with your fall and spring loans.

Summer financial aid requires a separate application. To learn more about the requirements for summer financial aid or to access the application go to Once you are registered for summer classes, you may submit the summer application.

If you have specific questions regarding summer financial aid, you may contact the Office of Student Financial Aid by emailing or calling (319) 335-1450 or stopping by 208 Calvin Hall during office hours (M-F 8:00a.m. - 4:30p.m.)

Who do I contact if I have further questions about the Summer Hawk Tuition Grant?

Refer to the links in the FAQ's above for questions related to those specific topics.
For questions about how to build summer courses into your plan of study contact your advisor.
If you have additional questions contact