Schools can help students avoid financial pitfalls by encouraging them to take advantage of the many options available for financing their education. It may include student loan repayment programs and other alternatives to traditional tuition-based aid. Research shows that empowering students as partners in their learning leads to better outcomes and more positive school cultures. This webinar series will showcase practices used by districts that elevate student voices.
Historically, paperwork and inefficiencies have overwhelmed college financial aid and enrollment processes. Using predictive analytics to anticipate which students need aid allows schools to streamline processing and allocate budgets effectively, giving more aid to genuinely needy students. It improves ROI and makes the student experience more personal and positive. Partnering with a financial aid consulting team is a wise choice.
Financial aid consultants conveniently work with families face-to-face, by phone, or online. They know your students’ backgrounds, interests, and goals and use this information to help them find colleges that are a good fit. Also know about merit scholarships that might be available for your student. They have the expertise to guide your students through unique financial situations, such as a loss of employment or unexpected medical expenses, and they can help execute financial aid appeals. They can even make referrals for specialized scholarships that aren’t widely advertised.
Schools must understand financial aid processes and procedures, Title IV programs, and regulatory compliance. Consultants possess this expertise, making them a valuable addition to your team. For example, some colleges partner with employers to offer students forgivable loans in exchange for an internship or job after graduation. These innovative recruitment incentives can help institutions increase enrollments in high-demand fields like nursing and accounting. The traditional list price/aid model has a role to play, but so do more targeted incentives that promote affordability and access for low-middle-income families. While demographics and discounting are factors that schools can’t control, ROI is a goal they can achieve by investing in students’ outcomes and lifelong success. By doing so, they can better demonstrate their value to prospective and current students. It is vital to continue growing enrollments and meet their ROI goals.
Schools with financial aid consultants can offer families services from start to finish. They can help students complete applications and fill out essential forms like the FAFSA and CSS profile and assist with appeals if a college’s decision isn’t favorable. These service providers can also recommend colleges that fit a student’s profile and often have access to merit scholarships that could make attending school even more affordable. Families can save money on college visits and application fees and avoid costly mistakes by working with a consultant who knows the process inside and out.
Schools that partner with a consulting team can also get help completing all backroom financial aid processes like verification, R2T4, SAP, PJ, and loan processing. These professionals follow the school’s policies and procedures and use systems to complete tasks and track work completed. These professionals can be full- or part-time. It allows schools to focus on student support services, increasing ROI on their higher education efforts.
Financial aid consultants are familiar with all the complex forms that students must fill out and can help families avoid common errors that result in costly delays. They can also guide students toward schools that are likely to offer enough financial aid based on a student’s unique profile. A vital consultant can also guide through compliance issues. Such as yearly and state audits and federal program reviews; help with the Heightened Cash Monitoring (HCM) disbursement method; and work with clients to develop policy and procedural changes that prevent loan defaults. They may also facilitate training in various settings and be asked to participate in panel discussions at industry meetings.