NASFAA Presents Overview of Federal Student Aid Programs to Congressional Staff

By Stephen Payne, Policy & Federal Relations Team

NASFAA’s Policy and Federal Relations team took to Capitol Hill on Tuesday to unveil the 2015 National Student Aid Profile, an annual report published by NASFAA that serves as a resource on the basics of the federal student financial aid programs. The report outlines the major federal student aid programs and includes data about the number of recipients and the total dollar volume of these programs.

Every year NASFAA briefs congressional staffers and other members of the higher education policy community about the major components of the report, and this year was no exception. In front of a packed room in one of the Senate office buildings, NASFAA President Justin Draeger opened the briefing by emphasizing the importance of the federal aid programs in ensuring that “no qualified student is denied access because of a lack of resources.”

Managing Director of Policy and Federal Relations Megan McClean provided background on the history and purpose of many of the Title IV student assistance programs before Senior Policy Analyst Karen McCarthy gave a brief overview of the most common programs:

  • The Federal Pell Grant Program;
  • The Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG) Program;
  • The Federal Work-Study Program;
  • The Federal Perkins Loan Program;
  • The Federal Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loan Programs; and
  • The Direct PLUS Loan Program.

NASFAA 2015 Dallas Martin Endowment Policy and Federal Relations Intern Angel Flores engaged the audience with series of questions to help them determine their own dependency status, and before the team took questions, Federal Relations Associate Stephen Payne provided some background on the fiscal year (FY) 2015 budget and appropriations process and the outlook for FY2016.

The event drew a large crowd of staff and interns from congressional offices and committees, as well as members of the Washington, D.C. higher education policy community. The briefing, held annually, aligns with NASFAA’s mission to serve as a forum for student financial aid and to advocate for financial aid programs at the federal level. In particular, this event serves to educate new congressional staff members about the basics of the federal student aid programs and introduce them to the variety of ways NASFAA can be of assistance to their office. Photos from the event may be viewed on NASFAA’s Facebook page.


Publication Date: 7/29/2015

Theodore M | 7/29/2015 11:13:15 AM

Very nice work on the report.

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