today’s news for Tuesday, May 3, 2022

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Hopes of a March yielding a lion-sized increase in FAFSA renewals did not come to fruition, with an overall 8.9% drop in applications for the 2022-23 cycle. The data tracked by the National College Attainment Network (NCAN) highlighted heightened concern over renewals for currently enrolled students, as well as Pell Grant-eligible students, who had declines of 12.3% and 15.5% respectively, sparking concern for a potential plummet in enrollment.

In a recent update to a Dear Colleague Letter GEN-21-02, Federal Student Aid (FSA) reminded students, parents, and the financial aid community of the aid office’s ability to exercise documented professional judgment (PJ), and noted that increased use of PJ would not factor into whether an institution is selected for a program review for the 2022-23 award year. “Because many of the difficult economic conditions described in our August 2021 update persist, we are extending the guidance in this letter through the 2022-23 award year,” the April 29 notice from FSA reads. “This means that we will not negatively view increased use of professional judgment or use it as a selection criterion for program reviews for that year. We have updated the award year dates in this letter accordingly.”


NASFAA President Justin Draeger will sit down with U.S. Department of Education Under Secretary James Kvaal to discuss the administration’s higher education priorities on June 27, 2022 at NASFAA’s annual meeting in Austin, Texas. What questions would you like posed to the Department’s leader on higher education policy? Submit your questions for consideration any time before the NASFAA annual meeting.

We know one of the most pressing issues facing higher education — and particularly the financial aid office — today is recruitment and retention. The College and University Professional Association for Human Resources (CUPA-HR) is conducting a survey of higher education employees to better understand why they may or may not be thinking of looking for employment opportunities elsewhere. The CUPA-HR Employee Retention Survey is live now and closes on May 20. It is intended for all higher education employees (full-time, part-time, exempt, non-exempt) who are not faculty and takes about 10 minutes to complete. All responses are entirely confidential and will be reported in aggregate only. None of the information provided will be associated with the respondent’s specific institution. Identifying information will not be associated with the responses. After the survey closes, CUPA-HR will share the overall results as well as results specific to financial aid, which we will then share with you. You and your colleagues can complete the survey online today.





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