Monday, November 20, 2017

2017 MASFAA Awards and Recipients

by 2016-17 MASFAA Awards Committee

The 2017 MASFAA Conference took place in Dayton, Ohio and we had the opportunity to honor many MASFAA colleagues for their dedicated and much appreciated service to our organization, the financial aid profession, and the students we serve.

The highest award MASFAA bestows, Allen W. Purdy Distinguished Service Award, was given to Lori Vedder (University of Michigan-Flint).

The Meritorious Service Award was received by Chad Olson (Iowa State University).

Keri Gilbert (University of Missouri) was given the Outstanding New Professional Award.
The 2016-17 President's Award was presented to Emily Haynam (The Ohio State University) by Thomas Ratliff, 2016-17 MASFAA President.

Thomas also presented the Committee of the Year Award to the Communications committee (Jayme Jarrett, Crystal Baker, Kristin Bhaumik, Felicia Drayton, Keri Gilbert, Melissa Haberman, Chandra Owen, David Peterson, Aesha Williams, Scott Young) for their tireless work on the new MASFAA website.

On Sunday, two very worthy students were given the
MASFAA Student Success Story Award: Mona Lloyd (Capital University) and Jaime Keffer (Zane State College). Their stories were inspiring and we were all reminded of all the obstacles our students are faced with while attaining their education, and many still keep at it until the end.

We also had the privilege to learn a little bit more about our State Leadership Award recipients: Michelle Stipp (IL), Melinda Middleton (IN), Jennifer Schroeder (IA), Val Meyers (MI), Brittany Tweed (MN), Charles “Buddy” Mayfield (MO), Erica Henry (OH), and Keyimani Alford (WI).
And as it is tradition, many of our MASFAA members were honored for their many years of service in the financial aid profession with:

Linda
Handy
IN
40
Vickie
Crupper
MI
35
William
Henderson
WI
35
Lisa
Mitchell
IN
35
Cynthia
Seyfer
IA
35
William
Shaffner
MO
35
Susan
Swisher
IL
35
Patricia
Williamson
IL
35
Josephine
Cassar
MI
30
Samantha
Matchefts
MO
30
Carolyn
McCluskey
OH
30
Lori
Vedder
MI
30
Dennis
Wentworth
IN
30
John
Brown
OH
25
Anne
Dahlen
MN
25
Janet
Fike
WV
25
Donna
Holubik
MI
25
Mark
Kormann
MN
25
Melinda
Middleton
IN
25
Jenae
Schmidt
MN
25
David
Vikander
MN
25
Gayle
Yamry
MN
25
Sondra
Fonville
MI
20
Kristi
Fuller
IA
20
Sara Beth
Holman
WI
20
Betsy
Johnson
OH
20
James
Myers
MO
20
Marcia
Osman
IN
20
Jeff
Pfund
WI
20
Michelle
Stipp
IL
20
Charles
Timmons
IN
20

And
Retirement acknowledgements:
Paul
Johnston
Indiana
Judy
Clark
Indiana
Jamie
McGrath
Indiana
Vickie
Dahl
Indiana
Susan
Lehman
Indiana
Carolyn
Schwendeman
Iowa
Mark
Warner
Iowa
Erin
Gjerde-Bailey
Iowa
Sharon
Abernathy
Missouri
Mickey
Markmann
Missouri
Linda
Ingersoll
Missouri
Laura
Knoeppel
Missouri
Marge
Stoner
Missouri
Jeff
Zellers
Ohio
Patricia
Tolford
Ohio
Barbara
Leamareaux
Ohio
Lynn
Axton
Ohio
Nina
Morton
West Virginia
Sue
Berens
Wisconsin
Patricia
Montanye
Wisconsin
Virginia
Nuske
Wisconsin
Sheila
Trotter
Wisconsin
Pam
Warren
Wisconsin
Billie
Olson
Wisonsin


Please continue to help us congratulate all of this year’s award recipients for all they do on a daily basis.

Monday, November 13, 2017

MASFAA Website

The new MASFAA website is here! https://masfaaweb.org/ 
MASFAA Website
Log In
Everyone that went to the conference and selected membership already has a login to the new site, and you should have received information about how to login. Start by clicking the little blue icon at the top right corner of the page. If you have not received an email or you are unable to log in use the password reset page

Ready to renew your membership? Create a profile with your email and password. We now offer the ability to pay online by credit card using PayPal, as several of state associations already do. Once your payment is received you will be granted access to the member only content areas of the site.


Create Your Profile
Click on the icon you used to log in and a menu will appear. Go to view profile. Then click "Edit Profile" up at the top. Make sure your name, contact info and other info you would like to share are accurate. You can even add a profile picture!

Start exploring the site this week! We will send you some tips and tricks on the site over the next few weeks. 



Spotlight of the Week
Conference presentations from the October conference are available at https://masfaaweb.wildapricot.org/conference-presentations









Monday, October 30, 2017

Plant Seeds for the Future

by Nick Prewett, 2017-2018 MASFAA President

I’ve heard many times that you don’t find financial aid, it finds you.  So like many I started in financial aid a number of years ago because I was looking for a job. What started as a job, changed when I attended my first financial aid conference.  For me that was the Kansas financial aid conference.  For those of you new to the profession, this was pre-social media and when you paid per text.  I was amazed at how many people knew each other and cared about each other and   I’ll be honest, I felt a bit like an outsider. But as I got to know more and more people, I have developed friendships and built my own financial aid family. Our friends and family that are not in financial aid see the fun side of financial aid.  They don’t understand 399’s, conflicting information, R2t4, or many of the other annoying things we live on a regular basis.  Financial aid associations are where we can let our hair down and ask questions without being judged (well, sometimes we judge…). 

MASFAA is one of those life changing experiences. Use MASFAA to experience the fun, challenging, and rewarding side of financial aid.  Experiences make us who we are, they fill our buckets, but we need to ensure we fill other people’s buckets.  We were given an amazing organization, but it is time for us to make it better not only for ourselves but for the future of financial aid administrators.  It is time to plant seeds for the future, to pay it forward.  My challenge to MASFAA for the next year is to focus on who we are and what we can do to help our students.  To do that we need to have an organization that is strong enough to provide the training and support to advocate for student aid.  That comes from member involvement and member commitment.  This is our association and we get as much out of it as we put into it.

I encourage you to make MASFAA your own. Volunteer for a committee, find a mentor, build relationships and create your own financial aid family that you will rely on for the rest of your career. This is your organization, and it takes your commitment and passion to keep it successful, so help us make it great!

Monday, October 23, 2017

Thank you… and a challenge!

by Chad Olson, Iowa State University
I wanted to say “thank you” to those who nominated me for the MASFAA Meritorious Service Award.  Receiving this award is a very humbling honor, and I appreciate being recognized.  Financial aid is an industry built on the backs of hard working, determined individuals.  Being listed among the ranks of prior winners is something that I do not take lightly.

I also wanted to issue a challenge to the 101 newcomers at the 2017 MASFAA Conference.  If you haven’t already, get involved!  Whether it’s on your campus, within your state association, MASFAA, or NASFAA, join a committee, write a blog entry, or advocate for students.  Professional development activities can add more commitments to your already busy schedule, but what you receive back cannot be measured. 

If you’re a newer or less involved member, join a large committee to meet lots of people!  Offer to help your program or local arrangements committee, so you can influence the direction of your conference.   Attend the MASFAA Summer Institute or Leadership Symposium, where you’ll quickly bond with other association members, and gain valuable knowledge.  Apply to join a NASFAA Task Force.  Look for mentors both internally and externally from financial aid.  Take advantage of leadership development activities on your campus to build connections at your institution.
All of the professional experiences I’ve had within IASFAA, MASFAA, and NASFAA have helped me within my position at Iowa State University.  The network of friends and colleagues I’ve developed is an amazing secondary benefit.  As President Prewitt alluded to when he took the gavel recently, you build a network you can discuss financial aid concerns, office politics, and even personal interests with. 


Even if it involves you stepping outside of your comfort zone, just get involved!  You’ll be glad you did!  

Monday, October 2, 2017

There's an app for that!

The 2017 MASFAA Conference has gone mobile!


We're excited to announce we have a brand new mobile guide for you to use on Guidebook! Get the guide to access the most up-to-date information about our event, including schedules, maps, and much more. Get our guide by following the step-by-step instructions below!




2.    Enter your cell phone number – a link will be texted to you which will take you directly to your app store to download Guidebook

3.    Follow the link in your text

4.    Download Guidebook

5.    Enter the conference passcode to connect to MASFAA 2017 content. The passcode is masfaa2017

Android and iOS users can download the Guidebook app from their app store and access MASFAA conference content by using the passcode masfaa2017

Need some additional help? Check out the Guidebook Tutorial and Instructions online: https://support.guidebook.com/hc/en-us/articles/202891364-End-User-Tutorial-Using-the-Guidebook-App

See you in Dayton!

Monday, September 25, 2017

Big ideas for student retention


By Angela Henry, USA Funds

Student retention has become more of a hot-button issue in the last few years, and rightly so. A recent New York Times article noted that “sixty percent of people go to college these days, but . . . more than a quarter of those who start college drop out with no credential.”  Helping students finish their programs of study is an important part of setting them on the right track to achieve their long-term goals, and it can even increase the likelihood that they will repay their education loans.

Complete College America, a nonprofit organization focused on increasing the number of Americans that attain post-secondary degrees and certifications, offers ideas that it refers to as “Game Changers.” Here are a few of these ideas for you to consider incorporating into your school’s retention plans:
·         15 to finish. This campaign is centered around making students aware of the benefits of taking 15 credit hours per semester to stay on track for a four-year graduation.
·         Structured pathways (also known as GPS Guided Pathways to Success). The idea here is that when students select a program of study, they receive a pathway to complete that program, including which courses to take and when they should take those courses to finish on time.
·         Co-requisite support. This recommendation involves putting students directly into college courses and providing co-requisite support to those students that need additional support. This may include things like additional lab or classroom time, academic support or peer mentoring.
·         Block scheduling. We know that a lot of students have other commitments: life, family, work, etc. Block scheduling makes it possible for a student to take his or her courses together, making it easier to plan for life around classes.
Ruffalo Noel Levitz, a consulting firm focused on higher education enrollment management, student success and fundraising, also provides some recommendations for ways to help with student retention:
·         “Intrusive” advising. Ruffalo Noel Levitz recommends that we need to get away from the notion that advising is simply course selection for a semester and make it about educational planning for the entire program; planning with the end in mind.
·         Financial literacy. We need to provide ongoing financial counseling and education for students and their families. Think beyond your financial aid recipients to include appropriate interventions for all students and their families throughout the student lifecycle.
·         Study the data. Each institution is unique and each incoming class is a bit different. That’s why Ruffalo Noel Levitz suggests identifying "specific needs for specific subsets of students" to target the appropriate intervention.

The most important step is to make sure you have some sort of actionable student retention plan that involves many different departments and takes your unique institution’s needs into consideration. Your school’s plan should also be measureable, so you can analyze what is working and make changes as appropriate.