Today's News

Today's News for Thursday, April 17, 2014 
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Your Thoughts: What Language Are You Using To Inform Students Of The 150 Percent Limit?

A legislative change, effective July 1, 2013, mandated that students who are otherwise eligible may only receive federal subsidized loans for 150 percent of the published timeframe for their program of study. We want to hear from you! Share with your colleagues the language/verbiage your institution is using to inform students of this change in the comments section and scroll through to see what other NASFAA members have to say.

NASFAA Seeks Volunteers by April 30 To Serve On Graduate & Professional Issues Caucus Task Force

The Graduate & Professional Issues Caucus (GPIC) Task Force, chaired by Mary Fenton of the University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center, will submit multiple conference sessions for NASFAA's National Conference and produce a report for the NASFAA Board of Directors identifying unique training and policy needs of graduate and professional schools. Members will serve June 2014 through January 2015 and will be required to attend one in-person meeting at the NASFAA conference and one in-person steering group meeting in the fall in Washington, D.C. Conference calls and emails will round out the work. Please view the task force charter and complete the volunteer form by April 30 if interested.

ED Issues Request For Information On Application Program Interfaces; Comments Due June 2

At the January 2014 “Education Datapalooza” event, held to encourage interested parties to develop new tools to aid students in evaluating colleges and exploring their funding options, the Obama Administration announced it would explore the use of Application Program Interfaces (APIs). The Department of Education will use feedback from this Request For Information (RFI) “to explore ways in which it could integrate APIs into existing resources in collaboration with external parties and providers." View the RFI for a list of questions to help guide your input and submit your comments through the Federal eRulemaking Portal, by email, or by mail no later than June 2, 2014.

Plan Your Activities Now For The National Conference In Nashville

MyPlanner can help you organize your time at the NASFAA 2014 National Conference so that every minute counts! You can search the conference schedule and create a personalized list of events and sessions you wish to attend. Need solutions from a vendor? Search for exhibitors, read their profiles, and request an appointment. The MyPlanner link is also available on the upper right of the NASFAA Conference site. Early-bird registration ends May 30, so register now to save $100.

You're Invited: NASFAA In-Person Briefing On Prior-Prior Year

NASFAA will hold an in-person briefing on Wednesday, April 23 from 1:00 – 3:00 pm to explain how prior-prior year (PPY) would functionally operate and highlight findings from NASFAA's recent Gates Foundation-funded study on PPY. The briefing will feature reactions from advocates in the higher education policy and financial aid community, including NASFAA President Justin Draeger; Kim Cook, executive director of the National College Access Network; Mark Lindenmeyer, assistant vice president and director of financial aid at Loyola University in Maryland; and Robert Kelchen, Ph.D, department of education leadership, management and policy at Seton Hall University. Please RSVP to by tomorrow if you would like to attend. The event will not be broadcast over the web, but keep an eye out for coverage of the event in Today's News on April 24.


Notice: Request for Information on the Use of APIs in Higher Education

To assist in its efforts to explore potential uses of Application Program Interfaces (APIs), the U.S. Department of Education requests information regarding the use of APIs in the context of higher education data and student aid programs and processes at the Department.


National News

Putting Community Colleges To Work

"The White House on Wednesday rolled out two job-training grant programs that focus on the community college sector. Both push for closer ties between colleges and employers," Inside Higher Ed reports.

Udacity To Stop Issuing Free Certificates Of Completion

"Beginning next month, the massive open online course provider Udacity will cut the first O from the acronym and only offer MOCs. Founder Sebastian Thrun ... in a blog post announced Udacity will stop issuing free course completion certificates on May 16," Inside Higher Ed reports.

State News

Bill Seeks $9.2M In Loans For Undocumented Calif. University Students

"Under new legislation, California universities and state campuses would set aside $9.2 million for loans to undocumented students currently ineligible for federal financial aid," ABC News 10 reports.


Commentary: How Much Regulation Is Just Right?

"The investment that government -- both federal and state -- makes in financial aid to students, who then pay that money to us so that we can use it to deliver our programs, is certainly considerable, and we need to be good stewards of it, so that students are well-served and taxpayers' dollars well-spent. If those ends are to be achieved, some regulation will be necessary. So, how much is just right?" David R. Anderson, president of St. Olaf College, writes for Inside Higher Ed.

Opinion: The Math Behind A Pricey College Degree

"With total student loans exceeding $1 trillion, one must ask 'is the tassel worth the financial hassle' when it comes to spending for prestigious colleges," Manisha Thakor, founder and chief executive of MoneyZen Wealth Management LLC, writes in a Wall Street Journal opinion piece.

Blogs and Think Tanks

CBO Finds Third Consecutive Year Of Good News On Pell Costs

"Yesterday, the Congressional Budget Office announced some more good news for members of Congress: For the third consecutive year, the Pell Grant funding cliff is smaller and further away than we thought," New America's EdCentral reports.

The Big Secret About Washington's Student Loan Profits

"This week, the Congressional Budget Office projected that the federal government would earn roughly $127 billion from student lending during the next 10 years," Slate's Moneybox reports.

Measuring The 'Value' Of Higher Education

"Today's students attend college for a variety of reasons, and whether enrolled in a degree/certificate program or personal enrichment course, everyone wants their money's worth. But how exactly is 'value' assessed?" Michelle Asha Cooper, president of the Institute for Higher Education Policy, writes in The Huffington Post's The Blog.



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