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today’s news for Tuesday, November 16, 2021

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Attigo® by Ascendium®: Student debt letters are an easy and effective way to communicate important college financing information. Customized messaging, school branding, no login barrier, and private loan details are a few reasons why schools use College Cost Meter alongside the Annual Student Loan Acknowledgement tool. Learn more at attigo.com.

NEWS FROM NASFAA

In its annual report released this week, the Department of Education’s (ED) internal watchdog detailed its plan to provide oversight on the department over the course of the upcoming year, as well as new areas of focus for its oversight of the Office of Federal Student Aid (FSA). Specifically, OIG said new areas of focus would include oversight of proprietary institutions and how those schools are following the 90/10 rule, FSA’s oversight of contractor’s acceptability review process for proprietary school annual audits, FSA’s outreach to underserved communities, and ED’s reporting on its experiential sites initiative.

NASFAA UPDATES AND ANNOUNCEMENTS

This AskRegs Knowledgebase Q&A was updated on November 15, 2021 to reflect a clarification from the U.S. Department of Education (ED) and a change in NASFAA's understanding of prior-year FSA Handbook language. It depends on whether the Pell Grant is the only type of Title IV aid in the student's aid package (aid offer). According to guidance NASFAA has received from ED, the student in this scenario is not considered overawarded and no further aid adjustments are necessary for Title IV purposes. View the full answer to this question to learn more.

The Return of Title IV Funds (R2T4) Self-Study Guide, updated for the 2021-22 award year, gives an overview of the provisions and examines how to handle a student's Title IV funds when they withdraw from school before completing the payment period or period of enrollment. The most recent edition of this Self-Study Guide is now available. If you have previously purchased and downloaded this guide, please replace it with the latest version.

Did you know that your learned stereotypes automatically form unconscious bias? While assisting students in achieving their educational goals, financial aid administrators navigate through a sea of federal and state laws, regulations, and regulatory guidance, and we do so as fairly and equitably as we can. Join NASFAA's Kochie Vaughan and a distinguished panel of your colleagues as they discuss the importance of initiating and advancing the conversation of unconscious bias on your campus. The panel will discuss the mission of recognizing and eliminating bias in financial aid policies and procedures. Register now.

Fielding Graduate University was planning to offer modular and subscription-based programs for the first time. Blue Icon worked with the school to develop written documents to explore and explain the distinctions and ramifications of modular and subscription-based programs from a financial aid perspective to other stakeholders at the institution. Read more about Fielding's experience and request your own consultant to help you better understand modular programs.

Most financial aid directors will tell you one of the most critical elements in learning their art has been receiving the advice and insights of peers. Through the voices of financial aid leaders, "You're the Director: A Guide to Leadership in Financial Aid" advises new financial aid directors, informs aspiring financial aid leaders, and offers new ideas to seasoned professionals about directing a financial aid office. In the years since its original 2012 publication, it has sold nearly two thousand copies, and it’s now an integral part of staff training on campuses across the country, as well as NASFAA’s annual Leadership & Legislative Conference & Expo. The third edition is available now. Order a copy now for yourself or your staff.

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