I had the privilege of attending the 2019 NASFAA Conference in Orlando, FL a few weeks ago. It was a great opportunity to meet up with many friends I have established over the years in financial aid. The weather was hot and muggy all week, but the venue was top notch. If you haven’t visited Disney World, I highly recommend it.
The event started off with a wonderful keynote speaker. Steven Pemberton relayed his message of the importance of each of us being a “light house” to our students. His presentation outlined his life’s experiences, which are also outlined in his book, “A World of a Chance.” His book was also made into a movie of the same name. The speech inspired me to look up his movie, which I found on Amazon Prime. I was so intrigued that I stayed up until 1 a.m. watching it. I highly recommend everyone watch it. My next step is to buy/read the book.
There were many good sessions to attend, many of them presented by members of KASFAA and RMASFAA. Some of these would be quality sessions for our own conference next spring. The federal update emphasized the Dept. of ED’s focus on continuing to update the processes of better access to federal aid for students by providing electronic tools to enable the aid industry to go to the student more readily. Some new additions to the Next Gen FSA initiative will be rolled out later this year at the FSA Conference in Reno, NV. There were numerous conversations about the changes in the Gainful Employment requirements for schools, but to be honest, I didn’t follow the specifics of it much as it does not pertain to my school (sorry!). I am sure that to those of you that it does apply to, you have been on the edge of your seat in recent days regarding this topic.
I hope you all had a good 4th of July holiday. I know it was a hot one for us all. If you are like me, you are now working diligently in preparation for students to return in the fall, while at the same time, preparing for (or actively involved in) your federal audit. Mine is next week, so we are scrambling around to get the necessary data prepared. Oh well, job security I guess!
Tony Tanking – KASFAA President