Today's News

Today's News for Friday, April 24, 2015 
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Sequestration Continues Into Year Four

Fourth year sequester changes for fiscal year (FY) 2016 for the TEACH Grant, Iraq-Afghanistan Service Grant (IASG), and Direct Loan origination fees have been announced by the Department of Education (ED) in Dear Colleague GEN-15-07.

Tell Us: If EFC Were To Be Rebranded, What Would It Be Called?

As the national conversation around simplifying financial aid continues, there have been some suggestions to rename or rebrand Expected Family Contribution (EFC), a term some say can be misleading to aid applicants. This got us thinking - what name would financial aid administrators like to give EFC? Respond to our short survey to weigh in and see what your colleagues think!

Ask Mr. Ethics: Can I Offer My Personal Experience with Certain Lenders To Borrowers?

Mrethicstn This week, Mr. Ethics offers advice to an aid administrator who had a frustrating personal experience with a particular private student loan provider. Using NASFAA's Code of Conduct as a guide, Mr. Ethics offers practical advice on advising students who have selected the same lender. Have an ethical situation you're working through? Email Mr. Ethics at with your inquiry. We will make sure your identity remains anonymous if your question is chosen to run in Today's News.

The Big Idea: Leave Your Footprint On Reauthorization

How would you change financial aid policy? Now’s your chance to share your vision! There’s about one week left to submit your proposal for The Big Idea: NASFAA’s Policy Challenge. Selected participants will compete in a game show-style event at the 2015 National Conference in New Orleans -- think of it as “Shark Tank” for the financial aid world! The winner will get to work with NASFAA staff to develop their idea, publish a white paper, and present it at NASFAA’s 50th Anniversary Conference in 2016. Submit your idea by April 30!

Tom Hanks is in New Orleans at the National World War II Museum!

The #4 ranked museum in the U.S. and #11 worldwide is in New Orleans—the National World War II Museum. One of the most moving exhibits is Beyond All Boundaries, a 4D journey through the war that changed the world. Narrated by executive producer Tom Hanks, it features dazzling effects, CGI animation, and first-person accounts from the trenches to the home front read by Brad Pitt, Tobey Maguire, Gary Sinise, Patricia Clarkson, and more. The museum is a treasure trove of exhibits and memorabilia that will make everyone pause and be thankful. Register now for the 2015 National Conference and we will see you in New Orleans!

NASFAA Seeks Policy Intern

NASFAA is looking for a student to fill a 12-week paid internship to assist in our advocacy efforts. The intern will help develop advocacy materials; attend and report on hearings, events and meetings; analyze and summarize legislation and regulations; and much more. The right candidate will be an undergraduate rising junior or senior, or graduate student, with an understanding of the federal legislative process and excellent research, writing, and organizational skills. If you know students who may fit the criteria, please encourage them to apply. Priority will be given to applicants who apply by Wednesday, April 29.


GEN-15-07: FY 2016 Sequester Required Changes to the Title IV Student Aid Programs

This letter provides information regarding sequester required changes to loan fees in the Direct Loan Program where the first disbursement is on or after October 1, 2015. It also provides information on sequester required reductions to Iraq-Afghanistan Service Grant and TEACH Grants awards where the first disbursement is on or after October 1, 2015.

4-23: Final FISAP Form, Instructions, Desk Reference, and Technical Reference for FISAP Due by October 1, 2015

The Fiscal Operations Report for 2014-2015 and Application to Participate for 2016-2017 (FISAP) has been approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). We have posted the FISAP form, instructions, and Desk Reference to our Information for Financial Aid Professionals (IFAP) Web site.

4-23: Federal Perkins Loan Program Status of Default as of June 30, 2014 (Orange Book) (Updated April 15, 2015)

On April 15, 2015, the Department replaced both the PDF and spreadsheet attachments of the Federal Perkins Loan Program Status of Default as of June 30, 2014 (Orange Book) to correct the award year reference in the heading for Column A and the year reference in the heading for Column B. The data in the attachments is correct and has not changed. In addition, the text of the announcement below remains the same.


National News

Financial Aid Offices Burdened With Compliance, Seek Federal Relief

"Paperwork related to regulation is impairing the ability of financial aid staff to help college students," Campus Technology reports. "That's the conclusion in a report aptly named, '2015 Administrative Burden Survey,' produced by the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA)."

Campuses: Fix Financial Aid Regs

"In 2010, a National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators study revealed that campuses were struggling from a shortage of resources due to a greater compliance workload - and student support services were suffering as a result. A new follow-up survey shows not much has changed," POLITICO Pro's Morning Education reports.

Wealthier Students More Likely Than Poor To Get Private Scholarships

"...[F]ederal data show that poor families that need the private scholarships the most are less likely to get them than higher-income ones," according to The Hechinger Report.

How Colleges Can Make Student Debt Feel 'More Real' To Borrowers Before They Graduate

"In 2012 all campuses in the Indiana University system began sending students - new and returning, undergraduate and graduate - a letter projecting how much debt they were on track to graduate with and what their monthly payments would be," according to The Chronicle of Higher Education.

The Catch in Arizona State's Low-Cost Freshman Year Online: No Aid

"When leaders of Arizona State University announced their unusual effort to let students complete their entire freshman year online at a sharply discounted rate, they took pains to distance the project from previous MOOCs, or massive open online courses," The Chronicle of Higher Education reports.

Pregnant Now? Here's How Much College Could Cost By The Time Your Kid Is 18

"When moms with teens were asked what they wish they'd known as new parents, their top answer had nothing to do with boys, drugs or grades," The Washington Post reports.

Job-Starved And Cash-Strapped Millennials Face Competition From Boomers And The Younger Gen Z

"When Chris Stone was 35 years old, he quit drinking and started saving," according to MainStreet.

Survey: College-Age Students Prize Job Security Over Passion, Show Gender Split

"The effects of the recession reverberate years on, as college-aged students continue to seek stability, according to the most recent Way to Work study of 18- to 24-year-olds by recruitment and workforce company Adecco Staffing USA," according to Forbes.

Low-Income Students Find Success At Small Private Colleges, Report Shows

"First-generation and low-income students can find the nurturing environment they need to be successful at small private colleges, but too often overlook them as an option, according to a new report released on Wednesday," Education Week's College Bound reports.


Opinion: When To Pay For Education-Related Financial Help

"There is a booming industry forming to help people with education financial assistance. There are companies and services that can help with FAFSA and Financial Aid, finding scholarships, financial planning for college, and help with your student loans after graduation," Robert Farrington writes in an opinion piece for Forbes.

Blogs and Think Tanks

14 Locations Of DeVry U. Will Close, Parent Company Announces

"The DeVry Education Group will close 14 campuses of its namesake DeVry University by the end of the year, the company said on Thursday as it announced declines in enrollments and earnings for the fiscal quarter ending in March," The Chronicle of Higher Education's The Ticker blog reports.

What Is Bernie Sanders' Endgame For College Affordability And Student Loans?

"For Bernie Sanders, the independent senator from Vermont with a foundation in democratic socialism, a run for the presidency is more about shaping the debate than winning," Stephen Dash, CEO of Credible, writes in The Huffington Post's The Blog.

3 'Easy' Steps To Student Financial Literacy On Your Campus

"For those that don't know, April is National Financial Literacy Month," Doug Schantz, director for the Office of Student Accounts at Wittenberg University, writes in a blog post on

State And Regional News

Registration Open For WASFAA’s Summer Institute

The Western Association’s Sister Dale Brown Summer Institute will be held June 7-12, 2015 at Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, WA. Summer Institute is a 6-day training encompassing the A-Z fundamentals of administering financial aid. We are pleased to offer three training opportunities this year: basic, intermediate and clock-hour tracks. We are delighted to be using NASFAA CORE curriculum, and each graduate of Summer Institute will have the opportunity to take ten NASFAA credential tests at no additional cost. Register today!




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