In this monthly round-up in Today's News, we would like to highlight what’s going on in your state and regional associations.
This month, we have the opportunity to hear from our colleagues from Florida, Arizona, Missouri, New York, California, Nebraska, South Carolina, Idaho, and Wisconsin.
Dameion Lovett, president of FASFAA (Florida), shares that the association held its annual Clock Hour Workshop on November 6-8, 2023 in Orlando, Florida.
Caleb Williams, president-elect of AASFAA (Arizona), shares that the association’s board and committees are “off and running!” The training committee, lead by co-chairs Aurie Clifford and Josh Edwards, has done a “fantastic job” of creating a program that includes both virtual and in-person trainings on a variety of topics scheduled from September through December 2023, he writes. Drive-In trainings for NASFAA Credentials on Professional Judgment (PJ) and verification are scheduled throughout the state on various dates. Additionally, the AASFAA Conference is scheduled for May 1-2, 2024. Caleb writes the conference committee is busy conducting site visits and working on sessions for the conference.
Tony Lubbers, president of MASFAP (Missouri), shares that the association held its 2023 Conference at Lake of the Ozarks. “With all of the ‘Better FAFSA’ updates coming out from ED, we decided that the theme, ‘Agents of Change,’ was appropriate,” Tony writes. Additionally, MASFAP’s Early Awareness Committee scheduled 14 financial aid workshops for high school counselors in September and October. Tony writes that these workshops have been well-attended as the counselors are concerned about providing correct information to students.
MASFAP’s Leadership Development Committee recently returned from an advocacy trip in Washington, D.C. Members of the committee met with staffers from the Missouri delegation from both the House and Senate, and discussed issues such as retaining campus-based aid, increasing the federal Pell Grant, eliminating student loan origination fees, and asking to reinstate subsidized loans for graduate students.
Patricia Donahue, president of NYSFAAA (New York), shares that the association’s 55th Anniversary Conference was held October 10-13 in Albany, New York. Over 250 members attended the conference to discuss relevant topics, including FAFSA simplification. NASFAA President and CEO Justin Draeger also provided an "Inside the Beltway" update, providing valuable and relevant information to our members, Patricia writes. Dana Kelly, NASFAA’s vice president of professional development & institutional compliance, also assisted with a panel for FAFSA Q&As, along with sessions on student loans and top AskRegs questions. “We thank them both for their time and expertise,” Patricia writes.
Christina Tangalakis, president of CASFAA (California), shares that the association celebrated its 50th anniversary at its conference, CASFAA Goes Electric: The Times they Are a-Changing, on October 11-14. At the sold-out conference, the association welcomed NASFAA President and CEO Justin Draeger, NASFAA National Chair Helen Faith, WASFAA President Amanda Cornelius, California State Aid Commission leadership, and honored retirees as VIP guests. CASFAA’s program committee offered sessions that tackled big issues including SAI, FAFSA simplification, anti-racist practice, tax training, state aid issues, undocumented students, and more. CASFAA also unveiled its Emerging Leaders Program, CASFAA Emerging Leaders Summer Consortium (CELSC), which will debut in July 2024.
Traci Boeve, president of NeASFAA (Nebraska), shares that the association’s Professional Development & Recognition Committee will be hosting virtual fall trainings. On November 8, the committee held a FAFSA demonstration and update on the state's Nebraska Opportunity Grant, hosted by Education Quest and Nebraska' Coordinating Commission for Postsecondary Education. On November 9, the committee will host a presentation about reporting farm income under new FAFSA simplification rules. And on November 10, the committee will be breaking out into different sectors meetings (four-year public, four-year private, two-year public and associate member sectors).
NeASFAA will hold its annual state conference on March 21-22, 2024 in Norfolk, Nebraska.
Additionally, Nebraska's Coordinating Commission for Postsecondary Education, along with support from NeASFAA, will be offering webinars for students and parents that are currently attending a Nebraska college to provide help and advice regarding FAFSA simplification. Webinars will be held beginning in November and through January 2024 based on interest.
Zachary Christian, president of SCASFAA (South Carolina), shares that the association’s annual conference was held October 8-11, 2023 in Myrtle Beach, S.C. The conference was well attended, with 137 friends and colleagues joining in-person, Zachary adds. SCASFAA was fortunate to have several special guests at the conference, including NASFAA’s Dana Kelly and Brad Barnett, NASFAA’s 2022-23 national chair, attend to provide important and timely information to our attendees.
Additionally, SCASFAA bestows three awards annually, to its members, Zachary writes. Kala Hudson of Converse University won the SCASFAA Emerging Leader award. Holly Gilliam, FAAC®, of the University of South Carolina, won the SCASFAA Achiever award. And Jennifer Williams of Clemson University won the Fearless Nine Service to SCASFAA award.
Kelley Christianson, president of IASFAA (Idaho), shares that the association held its annual conference in Boise, Idaho, on October 2-3. Fifty-two members participated in the conference with topics including FAFSA simplification and “Inside the Beltway” from NASFAA’s Rachel Rotunda. Kelley adds that Idaho’s Office of Inspector General spoke to attendees about fraud and abuse, the State Board of Education provided updates on the state aid programs, and vendors and sponsors spoke about connecting with Gen-Z, using social media, and the financial barriers to success. “Members were excited to return to an in-person conference and they had lots of good ideas for moving IASFAA into the future,” Kelley writes.
Mandy Slowinski, president of WASFAA (Wisconsin), shares that WASFAA’s Spring 2024 Conference, “We Open the Doors to Opportunity,” dates and location have been changed. The conference will now take place on April 10-12, 2024, at the Hilton Appleton Paper Valley in Appleton, Wisconsin. WASFAA’s Professional Development Committee is hosting a fall training mini-conference for members on November 10, 2023 at UW-Milwaukee at Waukesha. Attendees can earn their NASFAA credential on cost of attendance and collaborate with colleagues on FAFSA simplification and project management.
Craig Slaughter, past president of the Midwest Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (MASFAA), shares that the association just concluded its annual conference, with over 400 registered attendees — a new record. The annual conference had many volunteer presenters and moderators. Additionally, NASFAA’s Justin Draeger and Dana Kelly, NASFAA’s 2023-24 National Chair Helen Faith, and SASFAA President Daniel Barkowitz all led sessions throughout the week.
Craig also shares that Sue Minzlaff, who is retired from the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, was awarded the Allan W. Purdy Distinguished Service Award, and Zina Haywood, retired from Gateway Technical College, was the newest Lifetime Membership award recipient. Richard "Dick" Battig received the President's award after serving MASFAA for over 48 years.
“We were also blown away by the generous support of our attendees who raised $10,000 for Foster Success, a non-profit organization dedicated to ensuring teens and young adults transitioning out of foster care are educated, housed, financially stable, employed, and connected to a reliable support system by their 26th birthday,” Craig adds. “Thanks to everyone who attended, presented, moderated and helped with the planning to make this conference a resounding success!”
Check back next month to see what your colleagues are doing across the country, and check out your colleagues’ updates from previous months!
Publication Date: 11/9/2023