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Today's News for Thursday, October 23, 2014 
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ED Publishes Final Rule On PLUS Loans

Published in today’s federal register, the Department of Education has updated the definition of adverse credit and streamlined the application process. In comments submitted in September about the final rule, NASFAA expressed concerns regarding a need for different underwriting standards and about requiring PLUS counseling for certain borrowers, and supported the extension of the window for which an accepted credit check is valid from 90 to 180 days. ED will also begin collecting and publishing institutional PLUS loan Cohort Default Rates. Stay tuned to Today's News for more in-depth analysis of this final rule in the coming days.

New Leadership Conference Format Allows Greater Access, Targeted Experience

Attendees at next year's NASFAA Leadership & Legislative Conference & Expo will have their choice of two leadership pathways allowing them to receive a more targeted experience than at previous conferences. The 2015 Leadership & Legislative Conference & Expo, taking place March 1-3, 2015, in Washington, D.C., includes two days of sessions on various leadership and professional development topics, followed by a day on Capitol Hill where participants can advocate directly with their congressional delegation on behalf of their students.

Take A Brief Tour Of A NASFAA U Online Course

Ever wonder what it is like to attend one of the NASFAA University Online Courses? View this short welcome video for the Packaging and Notification of Awards Online Course and see for yourself what over 800 of your colleagues have recently experienced attending a NASFAA U online course. Take advantage of the convenience, effectiveness, and affordability of online training and register today for a NASFAA U Online Course! 


Final Regulations: William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program

These regulations strengthen and improve administration of the Federal Direct PLUS Loan Program authorized under title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (HEA).


National News

Parent PLUS Loan Requirements Revisions Get Mixed Initial Reviews

"The U.S. Department of Education Wednesday announced additional changes to the Parent PLUS Loan requirements, which have been the source of much controversy recently," Diverse Issues in Higher Education reports. "'Although the typical borrowing profiles of parents and graduate/professional students are very different, currently ED applies the same credit standards to both parent and graduate/professional borrowers (i.e., PLUS borrowers must have no adverse credit history in order to borrow),' said Justin Draeger, president of [NASFAA], in a statement submitted to the department ahead of the rule changes."

Colleges Getting Better At Cost Transparency

"Fortunately, colleges in recent years have become more transparent when it comes to letting prospective students know how much their education will cost," Consumer Affairs reports.

State News

Virginia: Gillespie Calls For Debt Relief, Jobs For College Graduates

"Republican senatorial candidate Ed Gillespie wants to ease the debt burden on college graduates by pushing an income-based payment system if elected on November 4," CBS 6 reports.

Virginia Joins Higher Education Distance Learning Agreement

"Virginia higher education officials are making it easier for students to take online classes and for universities to offer them," The Associated Press reports.


Opinion: Is Mark Cuban Right About Capping College Loans At 10K Per Student Per Year?

"Recently, [Mark] Cuban opined about student debt at Inc.'s GrowCo Conference. Against the backdrop of rising student loan default, he made a compelling case that, in the interest of economic growth, the federal government should set a per-student ceiling on the amount of student loan money it gives out every year," James Marshall Crotty writes for Forbes.

Blogs and Think Tanks

A New Option To Refinance Student Debt

"A new private student loan is taking a page out of the mortgage playbook in its design," The Wall Street Journal's Total Return blog reports.

Get The Facts About Borrowing Specialized Health Care Student Loans

"Federal loan options for health profession students include health professions student loans, nursing student loans, primary care loans and loans for disadvantaged students," U.S. News & World Report's Student Loan Ranger blog reports.




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