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Latest from FSA: Christmas and New Year’s Day Federal Holiday Processing and Customer Service Hours

December 15, 2017

latestfromfsa

FSA recently announced holiday hours for their federal offices, along with Title IV processors and contact centers. Closures include:

  • Monday, Dec. 25, 2017 – FSA federal offices, Title IV processors and contact centers closed
  • Monday, Jan. 1, 2018 – FSA federal offices, Title IV processors and contact centers closed

Furthermore, some Title IV processors and call centers will have additional closures around the holidays. Details are available at https://ifap.ed.gov/eannouncements/attachments/121317ChristmasNewYearsDayFederalHolidayClosings.pdf.

For more details, check out FSA’s announcement.

Latest from FSA: New Reports Available in FSA Data Center

December 14, 2017

FSA recently posted eight new reports to the FSA Data Center. These new reports highlight the characteristics of two Federal Student Aid customer segments: Direct Loan borrowers and borrowers enrolled in income-driven repayment plans.

Along with the reports, FSA posted a series of updates to the quarterly application, disbursement, and portfolio reports to include data through Sept. 30, 2017.  Furthermore, FSA published its annual report covering complaints, feedback, and alleged suspicious activity tracked through the Federal Student Aid Feedback System.

In its announcement, FSA includes key findings from the quarterly reports, covering topics like:

  • Trends in FAFSA submissions
  • Reasons for an increase in Direct Loan forbearances
  • Details on delinquency rates
  • Employment Certification Form (ECF) submissions

For links to these reports, along with details on key findings, check out FSA’s Announcement.

Latest from FSA: FSA Handbook with Active Index Now Available

December 8, 2017

FSA recently announced the release of the indexed version of the 2017-18 Federal Student Aid Handbook. The indexed version contains all of the important information you expect in the Federal Student Aid Handbook and allows readers to access areas of interest via links in an interactive index, which appears at the beginning of the handbook. The user-friendly index helps readers quickly locate information pertaining to their topics of interest.

For more information on the indexed handbook, including a link to the PDF, check out FSA’s announcement.

 

Latest from FSA: Updated FSA Coach Course Available

December 8, 2017

FSA recently announced that they have updated the FSA Coach Basic Training course – an introductory web-based tutorial on federal student aid program administration – and it is now available for the 2017-18 award year.

Per FSA’s announcement, the updated course “offers 37 lessons of training in the fundamentals of federal student aid program administration and provides more than 35 hours of instruction.”

FSA Coach allows financial aid administrators to approach training in the way that best fits their schedules, completing lessons individually or as a full course.

For more details on the updated FSA Coach Basic Training course, including details on accessing the training, see FSA’s announcement.

Presentations from 2017 FSA Training Conference Now Available

December 7, 2017

Nelnet team members recently returned from the 2017 FSA Training Conference. The event featured a wealth of great information and we hope you had a chance to attend.

FSA recently published PowerPoint (PPT) slides of many of the conference presentations on the FSA Training Conference website, covering topics from new Common Origination and Disbursement (COD) reporting to deterring federal financial aid fraud. See below for a full list of PPTs available for download.

 

General Sessions

GS2. Federal Update

GS3. Verification (2017-18 and 2018-19) and Identification and Resolution of 2017-18 Conflicting Information

GS5. FAFSA and CPS – Now and What’s Next

 

Breakout Sessions

  1. Welcome to Your First FSA Training Conference
  2. New COD Reporting
  3. eCB is Moving to COD
  4. Pell LEU & SULA Adjustments for Transfer Students Coming from Closed Schools
  5. SULA Misunderstandings & Misreporting
  6. Assuring Quality: Satisfying the Direct Loan Requirements 34 CFR 685.300(b)(9)
  7. Professional Judgment: Did You Know?
  8. Administering Disbursements
  9. Administering Adds, Drops, and Withdrawals
  10. Basics of Determining Academic Calendars (Standard, Non-Standard, and Non-Term)
  11. Title IV Reconciliation Tools & Tips
  12. Administering Title IV Aid for Transfer Students
  13. National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS) Update
  14. Common Origination and Disbursement (COD) System Update
  15. Regulatory Relief Listening Session
  16. Third-Party Servicers and Your Campus
  17. Cash Management Regulations Overview
  18. Modules and Title IV – Advanced Concepts
  19. A Guide to Year-Round Federal Pell Grants
  20. Top 10 Important Facts You Should Know About the Federal Perkins Loan Program
  21. Income-Driven Repayment (IDR) Plans & Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF)
  22. Return of Title IV (R2T4) Funds: Basic Principles
  23. Return of Title IV (R2T4) Funds: Advanced Concepts
  24. Open Forum
  25. Program Review Essentials and the Top 10 Compliance Findings
  26. Maintaining Your Institutional Eligibility
  27.  How to Detect and Deter Federal Financial Aid Fraud
  28. Complying with the Clery Act and Related Laws
  29. What FAAs need to know about Cybersecurity Initiatives, Data Protection, Identity Theft, and Cyber Security Risk Management
  30. Financial Aid Boot Camp for New Financial Aid Directors
  31. Findings in Financial Literacy
  32. The Future of FAFSA
  33. Federal Student Aid Feedback System and Annual Report – What FSA Learned from Student Aid Recipients
  34. Using Financial Aid Information for Program Evaluation and Research
  35. OIG Proprietary School Audit Guide
  36. Postsecondary Institution Data-Security Overview and Requirements

 

Hands-On Sessions

HO1. Hands-On NSLDS

HO2. Hands-On COD BASICS

HO3. Hands-On COD ADVANCED

 

Birds of a Feather Networking Sessions

BOF1. Bursars and Business Officers

BOF2. Experimental Sites Initiative – Loan Counseling

BOF3. Experimental Sites Initiative – Dual Enrollment

BOF4. Experimental Sites Initiative – Second Chance Pell

BOF5. Experimental Sites Initiative – Prior Learning Assessment (PLA), Competency-Based Education (CBE), and Limited Direct Assessment (LDA)

BOF6. Minority-Serving Institutions: Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and Predominantly Black Institutions (PBIs)

BOF7. Minority-Serving Institutions: Tribal Colleges and Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian-Serving Institutions (ANNHs)

BOF8. Minority-Serving Institutions: Hispanic-Serving (HSI) and Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander-Serving Institutions (AANAPISIs)

BOF9. Community Colleges

BOF10. Graduate and Professional Schools

BOF11. For-Profit Institutions

 

Foreign Schools Sessions

FS1. Orientation to the FSA Training Conference

FS2. COD Hands-On

FS3. NSLDS Hands-On

FS4. Postsecondary Institution Data-Security Overview and Requirements

FS5. Title IV Reconciliations

FS6. Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) and Return of Title IV (R2T4) Funds

FS7. The Top Compliance Audit Findings and How to Avoid Repeat Findings

FS8. Student Eligibility Requirements

FS9. Foreign Schools: Update and Q&A

 

To find out more about these sessions and peruse these presentations, check out FSA’s Training Conference website. And don’t forget to keep an eye out for details on the 2018 conference.

5 Updated Resources in the Nelnet Library

November 13, 2017

To help keep your students informed, over at the Nelnet Library we recently updated several of our useful borrower resources, including:

Just click on the links above to download the latest versions. You can also keep the interest rates handy with our interest rate chart. Check out our library for these and other free resources.

Latest from FSA: 12 Myths About the FAFSA

November 10, 2017

latestfromfsaOn the Department of Education’s HOMEROOM blog, FSA staff recently attempted to help students separate fact from fiction. The post covers 12 FAFSA myths and the truths that they often hide, helping students see the financial aid process in a new light.

The blog post covers myths like:

  • My parents make too much money, so I won’t qualify for aid
  • I support myself, so I don’t have to include my parent’s info on the FAFSA form
  • If I didn’t receive enough money for school, I’m just out of luck
  • I can share my FSA ID with my parents
  • And more

Check out FSA’s post over at the HOMEROOM blog and share it with your students.