November 18, 2015 – Today at 9:00 am ET Justin Draeger, president and CEO of the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA), will testify before a joint hearing of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee’s Subcommittee on Government Operations and the House Committee on Education and the Workforce on the topic, “Federal Student Aid: Performance-Based Organization Review.”
Draeger will answer questions and share testimony about the experiences and challenges financial aid administrators at colleges and universities have faced interacting with the Department of Education’s Office of Federal Student Aid (FSA). As an organization comprised of financial aid administrators at more than 3,000 public and private higher education institutions across the nation, NASFAA is well positioned to offer feedback on the effectiveness and appropriateness of FSA as a performance-based organization (PBO) because NASFAA members effectively serve as the link between FSA and today’s postsecondary students.
Despite FSA’s important work over the years, “one need not look too deeply to see that FSA is not acting in accordance with its required purposes in its role as a PBO, and in some cases, acts in ways that directly conflict with its stated purposes,” states Draeger in his prepared testimony.
Feedback solicited from NASFAA members revealed institutions observed a lack of accountability on FSA’s part and found the office’s approach to institutional management and administration of the financial aid programs overbearing and antiquated. Due to the strained relationship with FSA, many schools struggle to interpret rules and regulations on their own rather than reaching out for assistance. Ultimately this may result in students not receiving the aid to which they are entitled.
In order to minimize these negative effects, NASFAA offered the following recommendations to help strengthen the relationship between FSA and schools:
“We do not believe that any of these challenges are insurmountable,” Draeger said in his written testimony. “By increasing partnerships with schools, increased accountability to the public and stakeholders, and instituting some cultural and structural changes that must be made in law, we believe that each of these issues can be appropriately addressed.”
Other hearing witnesses include:
A live webcast of the hearing will be made available beginning at 9:00 am ET. For additional questions about NASFAA’s testimony, or to schedule an interview, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 202-785-6959.
The National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA) is a nonprofit membership organization that represents more than 20,000 financial aid professionals at nearly 3,000 colleges, universities, and career schools across the country. NASFAA member institutions serve nine out of every ten undergraduates in the United States. Based in Washington, D.C., NASFAA is the only national association with a primary focus on student aid legislation, regulatory analysis, and training for financial aid administrators. For more information, visit www.nasfaa.org.
Publication Date: 11/18/2015