FAQ

All responses apply to Stamps, Mork, Trustee and Presidential Scholars unless otherwise noted.

Can my scholarship be extended beyond 8 semesters?

No, all scholarships are awarded for a maximum of 8 semesters or 10 semesters for Architecture students at the time of admission, contingent upon the satisfactory completion of renewal requirements. There is an opportunity to apply for additional funding for use during the 8 semesters of scholarship eligibility. Please refer to the Exceptional Funding page for detailed information.

Can I upgrade my existing scholarship to another scholarship?

No, Stamps, Mork, Trustee and Presidential Scholarships are granted by the Office of Admission specifically to freshmen. Selection criteria is based on academic excellence, leadership, and service during a student’s tenure at their high school.

Does your office provide other scholarships?

Academic Honors and Fellowships does not actively support other campus-based or local scholarships. If you are interested in international fellowships, please visit our fellowships website. We also recommend talking to advisors in your major/minor department and visiting the Financial Aid website for scholarship resources.

What kind of advisement does the Academic Honors and Fellowships provide?

We advise students on issues directly related to their scholarship, including GPA & unit requirements, scholarship probation, exceptional funding, Leave of Absence, and general policy issues.

Do you provide academic advisement?

Generally, no. For advisement on your major or minor, please contact your academic department. The Office of College Advising provides advisement for undeclared or undecided students as well as for the General Education requirement

How can I meet with an advisor in your office?

Schedule an appointment by emailing your availability M-F between 9-5 to ahfstaff@usc.edu. You can also call to schedule an appointment; (213)740-9116.

Will auditing a course effect my scholarship?

Yes, it can. Grades or unit credits are not earned in courses which are audited. The Financial Aid Office will not factor the unearned course units into the units required per academic year to renew your scholarship. If you are in good scholarship standing, you are at risk of scholarship probation if you earn under the unit requirement. If you are on scholarship probation, your scholarship will be cancelled. Please note, units earned during the summer term are not counted toward the unit requirement.

Additionally, to receive your scholarship funds each semester, you must be enrolled in a full-time schedule (12 or more units for credit). If your are enrolled in 12 units including an audited course, which is not for credit, you will receive a bill for the semester’s tuition. The scholarship does not pay for audited units.

My scholarship hasn’t yet been applied and the bill is due immediately. What is going on?

  1. Are you currently enrolled in at least 12 units for credit? The scholarship only credits your bill at 12 or more units.
  2. If you are enrolled in 12 or more units, please contact our office immediately at (213) 740-9116.

Can I take a Leave of Absence? 

Yes, you can take a Leave of Absence, but you must first clear it with your academic advisor. Once your academic advisor has approved your request, please bring a copy of the completed form to Academic Honors and Fellowships in STU 300. Our office will then notify the Financial Aid Office of your intention in order to protect your remaining scholarship eligibility.

When you are ready to return, notify the Academic Honors and Fellowships in writing one semester in advance. Keep in mind if you enroll at another institution during your Leave of Absence, you will lose one semester of scholarship eligibility for every 16 units (or full-time equivalent) earned.

Can I take classes for pass/no pass?

Yes, but you should consult with your academic advisor before enrolling in any course on a pass/no pass basis. A “pass” grade will not alter your GPA and the units will count toward the units required per academic (fall/spring) year. However, keep in mind that you will not receive unit credit for a course with a grade of “no pass.”

Can you help with registering for classes that are full?

We do not offer assistance with registering for full classes. Talk to your academic advisor to check out your options. Work with the professor to see if there is a wait list and explain your situation.

Do Mork, Stamps, Trustee & Presidential Scholars receive priority registration?

There is no priority registration for scholars. Registration dates are assigned based on the number of units you have earned. This is addressed briefly on the Registrar’s website.

I am a graduating senior, can I take a reduced course load in my final semester at USC?

Yes, if you are in good academic standing (not under scholarship probation), there are two possibilities:

  1. Enrollment in 12-15 units: Formal approval not required.
  2. Enrollment in under 12 units (less than full-time): Advanced approval is required from our office. Please contact our staff for approval and additional information.

Please note, audited courses are not covered during reduced course load semesters.

Does my scholarship cover study abroad?

Yes. The tuition for the undergraduate overseas program will be covered according to your tuition award. Trustee, Mork, and Stamps Scholars receive full tuition for a Fall and Spring USC overseas program. Presidential Scholars receive half tuition for a Fall and Spring USC Overseas program. If the cost of the tuition at the university overseas is less than tuition at USC, your scholarship will adjust to equal the lesser tuition cost.

Please visit the following resources for more information on overseas programs. We also recommend researching other study abroad opportunities through your school or academic program.

If you receive Financial Aid beyond your scholarship, please contact the Financial Aid Office to determine what will be covered for an abroad program. If you are using funding towards a USC summer program, submit a request for Exceptional Funding. Please note: if going abroad means it will take you longer than 8 semesters to graduate, your scholarship will not cover your tuition beyond the 8 semesters.

Does tuition insurance protect my scholarship?

We recommend you carefully consider this elective insurance. It may help protect your scholarship for future terms in case of serious illness or accident. Please contact the Financial Aid office for more information regarding this insurance.

Can my scholarship cover a USC Progressive Degree?

Yes. However, the following criteria must be met: 1) Apply and be accepted into a recognized USC Progressive Degree Program, 2) Be within your eight semesters of scholarship eligibility, 3) take undergraduate and graduate level coursework simultaneously.

Is there a limit to how many units I can take as an undergraduate at USC?

As a merit scholar, there is no unit limit.  However, if you receive financial aid such as a Pell Grant, there is a limit of up to 144 units.  If you go beyond 144 units, and are within your 8 semesters at USC, you will still receive your merit scholarship, but will no longer be eligible for financial aid.

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