Strike Zone is a softball student-athlete at Ocean State University. Strike is a senior and will graduate at the end of the spring 2013 semester. Strike has worked hard both on and off the field, so the coaches would like to reward her by providing an athletic scholarship for the spring 2013 semester. Since Strike has never received athletic aid before, is this permissible?
Yes. NCAA Bylaw 126.96.36.199.1 states that an institution may award athletically related financial aid to a student-athlete for a period of less than one academic year only under the following circumstances: (Adopted: 4/27/06 effective 8/1/06)
(a) Midyear Enrollment. A student-athlete whose first full-time attendance at the certifying institution during a particular academic year occurs at midyear (e.g., the beginning of the second semester or second or third quarter of an academic year) may receive a financial aid award for the remainder of that academic year. (Revised: 5/9/06)
(b) Final Semester/Quarter. A student-athlete may receive athletically related financial aid for less than one academic year, provided the student is in the final semester or final two quarters of his or her degree program and the institution certifies that the student is carrying (for credit) the courses necessary to complete the degree requirements.
(c) Graduated During Previous Academic Year and Will Exhaust Eligibility During the Following Fall Term. A student-athlete who graduated during the previous academic year (including summer) and will exhaust his or her athletics eligibility during the following fall term may be awarded athletically related financial aid for less than one academic year. (Adopted: 1/15/11 effective 8/1/11)
(d) One-Time Exception. One time during a student-athlete’s enrollment at the certifying institution he or she may be awarded athletics aid for less than a full academic year, provided the student-athlete has been enrolled full time at the certifying institution for at least one regular academic term and has not previously received athletically related financial aid from the certifying institution. (Revised: 5/19/09)
(e) Eligibility Exhausted/Medical Noncounter. A student-athlete who has exhausted eligibility and is exempt from counting (per Bylaw 188.8.131.52) in the institution’s financial aid limit, or a student-athlete who is exempt from counting (per Bylaw 184.108.40.206) due to an injury or illness may receive athletically related financial aid for less than one academic year. If an institution awards aid under this provision, the institutional financial aid agreement shall include specific nonathletically related conditions (e.g., academic requirements) the student-athlete must satisfy in order for the aid to be renewed for the next academic term or terms. If the student-athlete satisfies the specified conditions, the institution shall award financial aid at the same amount for the next term or terms of the academic year. If the student-athlete does not satisfy the specified conditions, he or she must be provided a hearing opportunity per Bylaw 220.127.116.11. (Adopted: 4/24/08 effective 8/1/08)