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Today's News for Thursday, September 18, 2014 
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Voices From The Aid Office: 4 Ways To Help Students Improve Their Personal Budgets

As student loan borrowing and financial literacy continue to be issues of growing national concern, many financial aid offices are taking proactive steps to better educate their students on loans, personal finance, and budgets. NASFAA recently reached out to its membership to find out how aid administrators are helping their students become more financially literate - here are four strategies your peers have found success in using.

Personal Finance Expert Issues Cautions On Student Loan Debt

Can you guess what Suze Orman, author and host of a show by her name, considers the nation's biggest financial crisis?

Survey Shows Uptick In Need-based State Grant Aid Since Last Year

An annual survey, released Monday by the National Association of State Student Grant and Aid Programs (NASSGAP), reports that a total of $11.284 billion state financial aid dollars were awarded to students during the 2012-13 year. While the number represents just a small increase from the previous year’s numbers, the survey did show an increase of 3.5 percent in the amount of need-based grant aid given. Non-need based grant aid, on the other hand, saw a decrease of 2.1 percent from the year prior. For more information check out the 44th Annual Survey Report, the Annual Survey Query Tool, or the State Data Quick Check on the NASSGAP website.

Consumer Information Self-Study Guide Now Available

Consumer information is a complex financial aid issue which often causes audit and program review findings. This Self-Study Guide will focus on the requirements for making disclosures and is perfect for the independent learner. Self-Study Guides include multiple lessons with a variety of exercises to reinforce the learning process. NASFAA University Self-Study Guides are available for purchase in our online store, or receive unlimited free access as a Value-Plus Member.


National News

These People Can Make Student Loans Disappear

"Since November 2012, Rolling Jubilee has purchased and eradicated about $15 million worth of debt arising from unpaid medical bills. Today, the group announced that it has erased $3.9 million in private student loans, including Courtney Brown's and those of almost 3,000 other students of the for-profit Everest College," NPR reports.

High Impact, Low Participation

"Community colleges now have solid data on which strategies work best to help students get to graduation. While more colleges are using those techniques, far too few students are benefiting from them," Inside Higher Ed reports.

What A Consumer Watchdog's Suit Against Corinthian Could Mean For Other Colleges

"It's a pretty safe bet that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau won't see much of the half-billion-plus dollars it demanded from Corinthian Colleges Inc., in a lawsuit the bureau filed on Tuesday that accused the company of predatory lending and illegal collection tactics," according to The Chronicle of Higher Education.

Colleges And Universities That Claim To Meet Full Financial Need

"As universities cover more of the tuition bill than ever before, they're devoting most of that money to helping students without the resources to pay full price," according to U.S. News & World Report.

College Students Pay More As Subsidies Drop

"Subsidies for public higher ed institutions are the lowest in a decade-and for the first time, students are paying, on average, half or more of their tuition's cost," University Business reports.

State News

Florida Universities May Ask For $45 Million Boost In Financial Aid After Bright Futures Cuts

"Florida universities say they need millions to deal with the fallout from changes to the state's popular Bright Futures scholarship program," The Associated Press reports.


Opinion: The Democrats' Student-Loan Weapon

"Democrats face an uphill battle in their quest to hold the Senate in November. In their effort to get an edge, they've targeted one group in particular: college-educated voters with student-loan debt," Andrew Kelly, director of the Center on Higher Education Reform at the American Enterprise Institute, and Kevin James, a research fellow at AEI, write in an opinion piece for the Wall Street Journal.

Opinion: College Rankings Are Destroying Financial Aid

"Over the last several decades, colleges have learned how they can strategically use their institutional aid dollars to increase both their prestige and revenue," Stephen Burd writes for the New Republic.

Commentary: The Questions We Must Ask About A Rating System For Higher Education

"Any rating system must recognize the tremendous diversity of U.S. higher education institutions and the students that they serve," Laura W. Perna writes for The Hill.


UC Offers New Assistance Program For Middle Class Families

"Thousands of UC students soon could receive a check to offset some of their college-related expenses through a new state program aimed at assisting middle-class families," New America Media reports.



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