Student Financial Responsibility Agreement (SFRA)

and how it relates to PhD students

On June 26, 2018 all students were prompted with a Student Financial Responsibility Agreement (SFRA) when they log into the portal.  Following is a message that has been emailed to PhD students about this new agreement.

Dear PhD Students,

I am writing to you as a follow up to the recent Student Financial Responsibility Agreement (SFRA) communication that was sent to all Northeastern Students from Student Financial Services. This Agreement has generated a lot of questions and a bit of confusion, so I wanted to personally reach out to you to provide some additional context and clarity regarding the new sign-off process, particularly as it relates to funded PhD students at the institution.
The most important point for all of you to understand is that this Agreement is not a policy change at the university, and does not create any new obligations for students that did not already exist. The Agreement everyone is asked to sign is merely formalizing the university’s process, and making certain everyone is aware of their financial responsibilities. This step was necessary for the university to comply with consumer protection laws, which require complete transparency in financial policies, procedures and requirements. 

The questions I have received are certainly understandable given that many of you are funded. It is possible that funded PhD students accrue other charges on their account, which are not covered by their appointment or grant such as student fees for the health center, student government and the Marino Center. While a few fellowships cover these fees as well, most funded PhD students are responsible for these fees. Students are responsible for any balance after funding or aid is taken into account. As long as this balance is timely paid, students do not have to worry about holds on their account. All award letters indicate the amount the student will receive for their stipend, tuition, and fees, as applicable. The university will not place holds or require late fees due to the processing of funding. The SFRA agreement that you sign at the portal is merely an acknowledgement of this responsibility. 

I hope that this letter helps address some of your questions. Completing the agreement is a simple process and is necessary for you to avoid any issues related to portal access and registration activities. Please try to do that as soon as you are able.

Finally, I encourage you to visit the FAQ page.  If you have further questions or disagree with the balance for which you are responsible please complete the form at the PhD Network SFRA page. Once this form is submitted an email will be sent directly to [email protected] as well as to the PhD Network.

Sincerely, Sara Wadia-Fascetti, Vice Provost

Questions and comments submitted here about the SFRA or your student account will be emailed to Student Accounts as well as the PhD Network.

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