Monday, April 17, 2017

MASFAA Summer Institute Experience by Felicia Drayton, Haywood Legacy Scholarship Recipient

My MASFAA Summer Institute Experience 

About the program…
MASFAA Summer Institute gave me an experience beyond my expectations. It was like a Financial Aid 101 Intensive and I LOVED every minute of it.
My goals were to meet as many people as possible, collect as many business cards as I could and to leave without any of my own. I wanted to learn and generate as many relationships as possible AND I did!
I also unexpectedly received the Haywood Legacy Scholarship as a result of my goals to learn, connect and have fun which paid for my attendance at the 2016 Fall MASFAA Conference. I was speechless.
The Summer Institute expanded my understanding of the Financial Aid world on the local, state and national levels. My mind was blown to realize the various ways you can have an impact on the future of financial aid through your participation in our local, state and national financial aid associations.

The things I learned…
I learned that though there are concretes and non-negotiables within the realm of financial aid, there are also so many ways to come up with the same result to best serve our students. I learned that depending on the school and population, processes and procedures may be different from another school and this is OKAY.
I learned that I can always reach out to a colleague from another institution because we’re not in competition, we’re in partnership for the greater good of financial aid as a whole. 

How much fun I had…
I am truly thankful for the thoughtful evening events that made me step out and enjoy the company of my peers after a long day of learning. I had so much fun not only experiencing this new place, but new experiences with people I would’ve otherwise never had such an experience with. It was like experiencing the best parts of college all over again; learning, growing and collaborating. 

People I met/relationships made…
I have at least 30 business cards from people I’ve emailed at least once. When events come up, I reach out to them to see if they’ll be in the area so we can catch up with one another. The great thing is…now if I’m anywhere in the Midwest, I have a colleague in the area I can reach out to. 

Credentials I earned…
I walked away with the knowledge to achieve all 12 credentials and managed to complete two more! Now I have 14 credentials and a year ago, I didn’t even know there were such a thing.

Submitted by Felicia Drayton, Senior Financial Aid Administrator, University of Michigan, MASFAA Summer Institute Haywood Legacy Scholarship Recipient 

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