Second Semester Scholarships

Help us settle a debate.

We have a number of scholarships that are paid in the student's second semester (usually January). Should the payment of these scholarships be counted toward the year they were awarded, or the year they were paid?

For example: a student graduates in 2023 and is awarded a scholarship to be paid January 2024. Would this grant be included in 2023 figures or 2024? It seems to have been done both ways in the past; no one can agree on how it should be done!

Our year follows the calendar year.


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    MollyCerroniMollyCerroni Posts: 39 ✭✭✭
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    We count them the year they were awarded.

    I suppose to be consistent, organize it the same way you would with a four year scholarship. Do you count a four year as four scholarships, or do you count it all in the year it was awarded?

    If you are using CSuites it makes more sense to count in the year it was awarded.

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    AlyssaHazzardAlyssaHazzard Posts: 6 ✭✭
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    Thanks for your response! We don't have any four year scholarships, just single awards or awards divided between first and second semesters.

    Follow up questions: what would you do if the student ends up not attending their program if the grant has already been counted?

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    MicheleJeicanMicheleJeican Posts: 18 ✭✭✭
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    We cancel the 2nd payment and return it to fund balance if the student doesn't meet the requirements of the award whether it be for poor grades, left school, changed major etc.

    We enter the grant in full the year it is awarded with the payment dates scheduled split, multi-year, etc. You want to "commit" the fund to the amount awarded, regardless of when you pay it out.

    Michele R. Jeican, Finance Coordinator

    Northern New York Community Foundation

    131 Washington Street

    Watertown, NY 13601

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    CarolSloperCarolSloper Posts: 7
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    edited February 16

    We encumber the entire scholarship in the year it was awarded (regardless of number of payouts). If they forfeit (due to grades / enrollment eligibility or stop attending school), then we cancel the encumbered payments so it goes back into the available balance (unless endowed with a spendable payout).

    We do require a follow up from students each semester before we release the subsequent payments except for one scholarship (we generally have almost 100 awards from one scholarship fund, so those we release in full to the school at once with instructions to split the amount between 2 semesters. We're reconsidering this because it's a pain if the student transfers or graduates early.)

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    LisaBoxWilliamsLisaBoxWilliams Posts: 32 ✭✭✭
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    @AlyssaHazzard We make scholarships by semester and record the scholarship in the year it was actually paid. I have a process for the academic year, so the grants for one student in one academic year straddle two tax returns since we are on a calendar tax basis.

    In our case, each student must provide their previous semester grades and current semester schedule, and they aren't given the money until they provide that information proving they made their grades. We do not rely on the schools to track this information; we do it in-house.

    I also list grants in bulk on my tax return to schools where I have a concentration of students attending. I do not include the student's name on my return, only the school's. Our checks are made payable jointly to the student and the school.

    If the student doesn't attend the second semester, then we close the application. If the student doesn't make their grades in the previous semester, then they can't receive the scholarship again until they make their grades.



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    StevenCoopStevenCoop Posts: 8 ✭✭✭
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    This is how we do it as well. We want to track total amount awarded, hence why it is entered fully when awarded and then track similarly how much and when it is disbursed on the student's behalf. Doing it this way allow us to 1) See total awarded, 2) See total paid by semester, and 3) Gauge success of our awardees by how many don't receive the second half. We'll do a follow-up with students who don't receive second payments to get a better understanding of why.

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    JaninneNoccoJaninneNocco Posts: 6 ✭✭
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    We only book one year at a time.

    Janinne Nocco

    Controller & Administrative Officer

    Greater Lowell Community Foundation

    100 Merrimack St., Suite 202

    Lowell, MA 01852

    (978) 970-1600 o * (978) 580-0275 c

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