Leaving Phase II Early

General Discussion for SMART Scholarship Recipients

Leaving Phase II Early

Postby Guest » Fri Jun 15, 2012 1:22 pm

Hey guys,

I wanted to check on here if anyone has left Phase II early? I really have no enjoyed my Phase II and have found another job back in my home state and want to leave Phase II about 2 weeks early. When I joined, I was under the understanding that time spend in Phase II would lower the amount owed until you finished Phase II and owed nothing. The handbook doesn't mention anything about this other than:

19.5. Failure to Complete the Service Commitment
Instruction. Participants fulfill the service commitment and satisfactorily performing employee duties and responsibilities.
Procedure. If a participant fails to properly complete the service commitment, the participant will be dismissed from the program and may be responsible for prompt repayment of the entire award amount.


I'm willing to pay off two weeks worth of my SMART Scholarship. I would think it silly to make me pay back the whole amount for two weeks of work, but after some of the stuff I've read the Scholarship isn't as nice as it once was. I've been trying to get in touch with my CA, but aparrently she doesn't know how to use a phone and was unable to return my call (she instead called some chick who wasn't me).

If anyone has dealt with this before, it would be great confirmation of what is ahead of me. I don't want to owe 60k for not working two weeks...
Guest
 

Re: Leaving Phase II Early

Postby Guest » Fri Jun 15, 2012 5:50 pm

I believe it's in the old handbook that your payback for not completing phase 2 reduces as you complete portions of phase 2 (kind of like prorating your payback). Read that handbook to be sure before you pull any triggers.

http://smart.asee.org/assets/File/04141 ... ndbook.pdf

But really, is your new employer THAT anxious to bring you on board that they can't wait two weeks?

I realize that 2 weeks of payback would be peanuts (maybe a few thousand dollars or so) in cash. But nonmonetarily speaking, have you thought of the paperwork and hoops you'll have to jump through? It's the government. They will drag that on for eternity... If you can, I'd just wait 2 weeks.
Guest
 

Re: Leaving Phase II Early

Postby Guest » Fri Jun 15, 2012 5:53 pm

Participants who have completed a portion of their Service Commitment will
receive a reduction of the required reimbursement commensurate with the amount of time served.


That's in 17.6 of the old handbook.

Your CA could likely silent because she just ran your question up the chain of command. Maybe. But there's also probably a reason the new handbook is silent on the issue. I'm guessing that policy actually did change, and you must now pay back the entire amount, even if you leave just 1 day before your commitment is done.
Guest
 

Re: Leaving Phase II Early

Postby Inuyushi » Fri Jun 15, 2012 6:29 pm

Thanks for the responses. I talked to my CA this afternoon and she said that to the best of her knowledge, the amount left over will be prorated. And yes, I'm that anxious to get out of this state and get away from this job. I have not liked what I was signed up for from day 1 and I am willing to fill out whatever paperwork it takes and pay my prorated two week amount! This job has hurt my career more than helped it overall. It was a pain getting a real engineering job because this job is on my resume.

Thanks for the reply's! I figured the rule for paying a partial amount was in one of the old handbooks, but didn't want to go digging. I wish that they couldn't change the rules on you once you got accepted into the scholarship. I mean, the word "contract" means something completely different to SMART than it does to everyone else in this world.
Inuyushi
 
Posts: 17
Joined: Fri Jan 28, 2011 9:50 am

Re: Leaving Phase II Early

Postby guuueeesssttt » Sat Jun 16, 2012 11:05 pm

I feel the same way about the job hurting your career. Do you mind sharing where you worked?
guuueeesssttt
 

Re: Leaving Phase II Early

Postby Inuyushi » Mon Jun 25, 2012 1:00 pm

Oh yea, been a while since I've logged in to see how things are going. I'm at Aberdeen Proving Grounds, working for AMSAA. Just alot of number crunching and programming going on here.
Inuyushi
 
Posts: 17
Joined: Fri Jan 28, 2011 9:50 am

Re: Leaving Phase II Early

Postby recipient99 » Tue Jun 26, 2012 6:21 pm

Thanks for sharing the information about the possibility of a reduction in penalty for leaving early in Phase II. I had assumed that all money was owed back if you leave even one day early.

From these posts, it looks like there is doubt about which policy they are enforcing for all cohorts now. From Inuyushi's post, it looks like he is confirming that his CA believes a reduction in the payback amount is possible. Inuyushi (or anyone else), if you have any additional information on the process of leaving early during Phase II, it would be very helpful to hear how painful this process is.

I am late in Phase II with a PhD, doing nothing related to my research. I am fairly worried about what you mentioned - finding a job in my field after doing work for a few years at a job that involves very little engineering.

> "I wish that they couldn't change the rules on you once you got accepted into the scholarship."

I saw in a recent email from them about the Handbook updates that they are trying to apply the new rules to old cohorts, but I really don't see any way that they could legally do this. Does anyone have any experience on talking with them about this and if this is really their intent? Any explanation on how this could possibly be legal?

Thanks again for all of the helpful information and the handbook references.
recipient99
 
Posts: 28
Joined: Fri Nov 25, 2011 3:27 pm

Re: Leaving Phase II Early

Postby Guest73 » Thu Sep 13, 2012 11:23 am

Did they ever bill you for those two weeks?
Guest73
 

Re: Leaving Phase II Early

Postby Inuyushi » Mon Nov 26, 2012 2:02 pm

So far, I have not been billed for those last two weeks. I'm not holding my breath though. Sorry for the late reply.
Inuyushi
 
Posts: 17
Joined: Fri Jan 28, 2011 9:50 am


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