JB Pritzker, Governor, State of Illinois

Golden Apple (GA) Scholarship Payment

{ISAC Rules, Part 2764.40 and Section 2700.50}

Payment
Disbursement
Payment Offset and Reconciliation

Golden Apple Scholarships are paid directly to the approved institution of record which certified the applicant's eligibility by submitting a payment request (claim). Payment of scholarship benefits is requested by the school through ISAC, prompting ISAC to authorize a voucher in the amount of the claim and submit the voucher to the State Comptroller's Office. Funds are issued by the State Comptroller directly to the institution. Schools may submit Golden Apple Scholarship claims beginning 10 days prior to the start of the term for which payment is being requested.

2022-23 Golden Apple Priority Payment Request Deadline Dates

As part of our ongoing efforts to best leverage appropriated funds to award as many eligible students as possible, priority payment request deadline dates are established for each term.

  • First-term Priority Payment Request Deadline Date: Not Yet Determined
  • Second-term Priority Payment Request Deadline Date: Not Yet Determined
  • Third-term Priority Payment Request Deadline Date: Not Yet Determined

Payment

Golden Apple Scholarship payment processing is done using the GA system available through ISAC’s GAP Access portal. School staff must have the appropriate level of access in order to submit payment requests in GAP Access. The school's primary administrator or a designated administrator is responsible for authorizing access levels.

Colleges can request payment for individual students via the GA Student Detail: Payment screen or in batches for a group of students via the GA Payment Request Entry screen. Submitting payment requests is a two-step process, which involves generating the request and then submitting the request. By submitting a payment request to ISAC via the GA system, a college is certifying that the student meets all eligibility criteria.

A Payment Result Summary and Invoice Detail Report can be viewed or printed  by selecting the report tab in the GA system the day after a payment request has been processed. The report includes Payment Results and Payment Exceptions as well as Invoice Detail about the payment claim. The Payment Results/Exceptions report should be reviewed the day after submitting payment requests to see which requests, if any, did not process as expected.

Refer to the payment section of the GA User Guide for a list of result codes, as well as details about how to submit a payment request, use the sort and filter functions, and obtain payment reports. Refer to the GA Electronic Processing page for details about accessing the GA system and hours of operation.

Disbursement

Awards are made in multiple disbursements. The maximum award amount per regular school year is $5,000 for those in their third, fourth or fifth year of being a Scholar, and $2,500 for those in their first or second year of being a Scholar. For full-year awards, semester schools receive two disbursements; quarter schools receive three disbursements. Multiple disbursements are not required in cases where the recipient’s eligibility is not determined until the final term of the award year for which the scholarship is being awarded. If the student has applied for or is enrolled in a term(s) which is less than the award year, they may receive the full award based on their year in the program.

The Golden Apple Foundation certifies a recipient’s eligibility one term at a time. Only the term(s) that have been certified as eligible will display on the Payment Request Entry screen. (For example, in September, only the fall term payment will be available to request.)

ISAC authorizes a voucher in the amount of the payment invoice and submits it to the State Comptroller's Office which issues payment to the institution. Vouchers are emailed to the Financial Aid Director. Colleges  can match the invoice number on the Payment Results/Exceptions report with the voucher.

Upon receipt of the scholarship funds from the Comptroller, the college should verify the student's enrollment status for the term for which the award was intended.

  • If the recipient is enrolled, the institution may credit the scholarship funds to the recipient’s account for expenses due and payable. If appropriate, any balance is to be returned to the recipient.
  • If the recipient has withdrawn, or if the college has reduced the amount of the award so as not to exceed the cost of attendance, the college must indicate the reason on the GA Student Detail: Payment screen. The GA system will deobligate the award and the amount will offset a future payment to the college.

If a student fails to meet any of the eligibility requirements during the academic year, all undisbursed funds will be deobligated.

Payment Offset and Reconciliation

The Payment Offset and Reconciliation procedures apply to Golden Apple Scholarship payment processing. Refund checks should not be sent for cancellations/adjustments made throughout the award year. Funds should only be returned to ISAC after a final reconciliation has been completed at the end of the regular school year.

Information about the payment offset process and reconciliation is located in the Refunds and Unpaid Claims section in the Processes area.