NASFAA Leadership & Legislative Conference & Expo participants are encouraged to participate in meetings with their respective delegations in the U.S. Congress on Capitol Hill. Having financial aid professionals engage in personal interactions with members of Congress and staff delivers the on-the-ground perspectives necessary for policymakers to make informed decisions.
This year, the Capitol Hill Day will occur on Wednesday, February 7, as the final, optional day of the NASFAA Leadership & Legislative Conference & Expo. Most congressional offices have returned to taking in-person constituent meetings on Capitol Hill. Participants are encouraged to schedule their meetings for Wednesday morning, as NASFAA staff will lead a Hill Visit Debrief on February 7 from 2:00-3:00 p.m. at the Mayflower. The debrief is optional and all conference registrants are welcome to attend.
Please see below for more information on how to schedule in-person and virtual meetings.
Participants are responsible for scheduling their own Capitol Hill meetings, and are encouraged to begin reaching out to congressional offices to schedule meetings in early January. If at all possible, attempt to coordinate with other members of your state. Participants are encouraged to schedule at least three meetings: one with their representative and one with each of their senators.
Contact information for representatives and senators can be found here:
When contacting congressional offices to schedule meetings, participants should ask to schedule an in-person meeting.We encourage you to schedule in-person visits to Capitol Hill for Wednesday, February 7 between 8:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. Please note, participants are also responsible for arranging their own transportation to the Capitol Hill complex. NASFAA staff will lead a Hill Visit Debrief on February 7 from 2:00-3:00 p.m. at the Mayflower Hotel. The debrief is optional, so feel free to schedule additional meetings in the afternoon if your schedule permits.
We suggest that you first call the office contact number provided through the respective links above and request the email address of the scheduler. Then, email your meeting request to the scheduler (sample email provided) and follow up with a phone call. In your message, identify yourself as a constituent and explain that you would like to speak to the legislator about financial aid and higher education issues the morning of Wednesday, February 7.
If the legislator does not have time on his or her schedule that day, ask to meet with the legislative aide that handles education issues. Some offices are able to schedule appointments well in advance, while others prefer to wait until the week or two before the requested date, so be prepared to be flexible and patient. Some offices may also ask you to complete an online meeting request form before they enter your meeting request into the calendar. You will also have to be persistent with some offices, as they may not immediately respond to your request; several follow-up emails or phone calls may be necessary.
Please note: These meetings typically last around 30 minutes but can run as long as 45 minutes, so you may want to give yourself 45 minutes to an hour for each meeting to be on the safe side. In addition, please allot at least 30 minutes between meetings on the House and Senate sides of the Capitol complex to allow for time to travel from one appointment to the next.
Having your appointment schedule helps us to prepare sufficient materials for your Hill meetings. Once you have scheduled your meetings, please submit the Hill Visit Appointment Form so NASFAA's policy staff is aware of your meeting schedule. If you have trouble scheduling your appointments, email NASFAA's policy staff at [email protected] for assistance.
The dress for the Capitol Hill day is business attire. When attending meetings in person, we also encourage you to bring an umbrella, comfortable shoes (many people wear sneakers or other comfortable shoes to enter the buildings, and then switch into their dress shoes after going through the metal detectors), a camera to take photos with your legislators, and business cards. Security is tight at the Capitol Hill complex (similar to airport security), so be sure to leave all other unnecessary items behind.