Today's News

Today's News for Tuesday, January 27, 2015 
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Obama Proposes Elimination Of 27 FAFSA Questions

A little-noticed proposal from President Obama, included in the supporting materials for last week's State of the Union address but not mentioned in the speech itself, would eliminate 27 questions on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

NASFAA Survey Extended, Input Needed for Upcoming Senate Hearing

The Senate Health Education Labor and Pensions Committee is holding a hearing in late February to examine the effects administrative burden has on schools and students. If you are your institution's primary NASFAA contact, yesterday you should have received a follow up email from us with a link to the 30-minute survey. We’ve extended the deadline to complete the administrative burden survey to Friday, Jan. 30, 2015. Answers will help inform policymakers and influence conversation during the upcoming hearing. Data will be published in the aggregate and individual institutions will not be identified. Again, please refer to your email for the link.

Willing To Do Financial Aid Nights At Local High Schools?

If you have significant financial aid experience and enjoy sharing your wisdom with others, volunteer your services using NASFAA's online Speaker and Mentor Directory. Simply log in to your myNASFAA profile, scroll down to click “Edit,” navigate to the Demographic Information tab, and scroll down to the “Speaker/Mentor Directory Listing.” Once you complete your profile, your information will be saved in the NASFAA database and you can update it any time. Users can search for a) mentors to financial aid administrators, b) mentors to high school guidance counselors, c) speakers for financial aid meetings or training events, and d) speakers for high school events. If you are ready to add your name and expertise, please log in to your profile now.

Learn To Lead at the 2015 Leadership & Legislative Conference & Expo

Being a leader of an association is more than just working the gavel — it is also about knowing how to lead a team. In a can't-miss session of the Association Management pathway, presenters will deliver techniques to increase the return on your investment in others. Explore how you can get a team prepared for transition, select the best team members, keep them active and engaged in the association, and solicit volunteers that will get the job done. Learn more about the 2015 Leadership & Legislative Conference & Expo and register today! 

Use The Index, Not Your Internet Search Bar

If you've been using the Student Aid Index, you may have noticed you're spending a lot less time searching for student aid terms in your web browser. The simple and intuitive online tool directly connects you to resources, regulations, definitions, and more. Stop Googling and start using the Student Aid Index today!


National News

Bending The Cost Curve

"Online education can 'bend the cost curve' of an undergraduate degree, according to a working paper from the National Bureau of Economic Research, but whether the lower tuition is caused by a boost in productivity -- as opposed to more competition -- is still undetermined," Inside Higher Ed reports.

Undergraduates In The U.S. Illegally Face A Wide Array Of Challenges

"Undergraduates who are in the United States illegally face numerous challenges in their pursuit of a higher education, including anxieties about paying for college, fears of deportation, and worries about being accepted on campuses, according to a report released on Monday by the University of California at Los Angeles," The Chronicle of Higher Education reports.

Competency-Based Degree Programs On The Rise

"Competency-based education is in vogue - even though most people have never heard of it, and those who have can't always agree on what it is," NPR reports.

Is There A Better Way To Deal With Student-Loan Debt?

"The process of taking out student loans can be nerve-racking, but the reality of paying those loans back can be downright sobering-especially when a looming, large number suddenly becomes very real during the repayment period," The Atlantic reports.

How Admissions Officers View Federal Regulation

"Senator Lamar Alexander, a Tennessee Republican who now leads the Senate committee with oversight of higher education programs, has launched an effort to trim needless federal regulation, and many college leaders are drawing up lists of rules they think can be discarded," Inside Higher Ed reports.


Opinion: The Financial-Aid Shell Game

"There's often a cold rain falling when I drive out to financial-aid nights in rural North Carolina. They're held in the depths of winter, right about the time high-school seniors start thinking in earnest about college, and that means a lot of storm-soaked evenings," Eric Johnson, who works in student-aid communications at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, writes in an opinion piece for The Chronicle of Higher Education.

Editorial: The College Bubble

"On one thing President Obama and Gov. Cuomo are agreed: The answer to high tuition and crushing student debt is more money from the government," The New York Post says in an editorial.

Editorial: Instead Of Free Community College For All, Focus Aid On Most Needy

"President Obama's proposal to make the first two years of community college free is a bold call to boost higher education access and affordability," The Denver Post says in an editorial.

Blogs and Think Tanks

The Average American Owes This Much In Student Loan Debt -- How Do You Compare?

"The cost to achieve the American Dream continues to head higher for college-bound students," The Motley Fool reports.




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