today’s news for Friday, April 20, 2018

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 Off the Cuff

This week on "Off The Cuff," Stephen and Allie talk in more detail about how a possible budget rescission — even if it's not passed by Congress — could impact student aid funding, and how members can encourage lawmakers to continue to support the "Fight for Financial Aid" in fiscal year 2019. With midterm elections approaching, the two discuss a new report from the Center for American Progress on how shifting demographics nationwide could impact elections. Plus, Allie gives an update on a lawsuit seeking to halt the Department of Education's process to award partial relief to some borrower defense claimants, and Stephen shares new details on the characteristics of Grad PLUS Loan borrowers from a new report released by the Government Accountability Office (GAO).

Many news articles related to student debt seem to tout the same figures — that 44 million Americans have accumulated a total of more than $1.4 trillion in student loan debt. Higher education experts, however, gathered in D.C. Thursday to look beyond those numbers and shed a light on the real challenges that students are facing and the policies that could help them.  


NASFAA U is happy to announce that the 2018-19 versions of the Self-Study Guides are available. Once a guide has been completed, the individual should have the knowledge necessary to take the respective credential test and formally demonstrate mastery of the topic.

Have you recently moved to a new institution, completed a new project, taken on more responsibility, or furthered your education? Recruiters are actively searching NASFAA's Career Center for candidates like you. Update your Career Center profile to let them know about your recent promotions and achievements.


During the period April 21-22, 2018, the Department of Education plans to complete important system work that will impact the Student Aid Internet Gateway (SAIG). This work is related to the transition of its data center to a new location and is in addition to the regular weekly maintenance that occurs each weekend.


National News

"The politics surrounding student debt and college financing could wind up exacerbating inequality, a prominent monetary policymaker warned Tuesday," according to MarketWatch. "Patrick Harker, the president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, told an audience of students at St. Joseph's University in Philadelphia, 'I am concerned that the looming shadow of student debt, coupled with increasing uncertainty about loan forgiveness programs and income-driven repayment, may dissuade some potential students — particularly those from low- and middle-income families — from going to college or pursuing jobs in public service.'"

"Every year, scores of gifted students have their college prospects hampered by life circumstances. Imagine a teenager attending a high school where few of his peers make it to graduation, much less college. This student, however, is a high achiever. His grade-point average and test scores show it. In fact, they're good enough to get into some of the best institutions in the country. But he doesn't go to any of those institutions—let alone apply for them. Actual high-schoolers like this hypothetical student and the issues they face are very real," The Atlantic reports.

State News

"When Laken Blount got a call from a man who claimed she’d earned enough college credits to earn an associate degree, she was skeptical," according to The Hechinger Report. "... But when the caller started sharing specifics about her prior enrollment dates and courses, the 32-year-old mother of two from Southaven, Mississippi, grew curious. It turned out he was from Complete 2 Compete, a statewide initiative that is part of a growing effort to get millions of American adults to finish their college degrees."


"'Where should I go to college?' 'Where should I work?' Instinctively, these questions are answered with the name of a dream college or well-liked company. But the geographic dimension — the 'where?' — often depends on a person's financial situation and ability to relocate," Abigail Wozniak, an associate professor of economics at the University of Notre Dame, and Jay Shambaugh, director of The Hamilton Project and a senior fellow in economic studies at the Brookings Institution, write for CNN.

Blogs & Think Tanks

"A bill wending its way through Congress would cap graduate federal student loans and drive many law students into the private loan market, potentially forcing between 20 and 30 law schools to close within five years," according to ALM.

"Sky high prices. Student loans that are burdensome for far too many. Large numbers of students who start college but never finish. Look at the headlines in higher education today, and you'll be hard pressed to find anything but bad news," Ben Miller writes for the Center for American Progress.



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