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Kathy Kurz

Becoming Paperless Means More than Just Making Forms Electronic - Monday Musings
In the last few months, I have visited two financial aid offices that had recently become “paperless” using an imaging system. Surprisingly, however, their processes were just as cumbersome—or perhaps even more cumbersome—than when they had their old paper files. To be clear, this is not a criticism of the imaging system itself, but rather the way it had been implemented at these institutions. Essentially, they were creating an electronic “paper trail” in the imaging system that mirrored what they used to have in their file drawers. For example, to package a student or to change a package, an electronic worksheet was created in the imaging system. The award was calculated or re-calculated and entered on the worksheet. Then the awards…Read more

Average vs. Total Net Tuition Revenue & Why You Have To Look At Both - Monday Musings
I recently read a paper in which a set of institutions were extolled for having held their freshman discount rates constant over the last few years since the economic recovery. And because those same institutions had increased their charges, the average net tuition revenue (NTR) generated by each enrolling student had also increased, which was also extolled. However, what was missing from the paper was any discussion of what had happened to enrollments and the total NTR generated by the incoming classes at those institutions. Without that additional information, it is possible that total NTR could have declined sharply even if average NTR increased—and it is total NTR that drives the economic engine of the institution. Certainly, if all of…Read more

Saying “Here’s How” rather than “You Can’t” - Monday Musings
I wanted to call our blog readership’s attention to an article that was in a recent NASFAA newsletter because I thought it was particularly helpful at this time of year when financial aid offices (and admissions recruiters) are having conversations with families about aid packages. The article was titled 5 Steps to Take When Students Appear at Risk of Over-Borrowing and was written by several aid officers. Here is the link to the article: http://www.nasfaa.org/Main/Voices/articles/5_Steps_To_Take_When_Students_Appear_At_Risk_Of_Overborrowing.aspx In a nutshell, the article suggests ways that professionals can talk to incoming (or current) students realistically about the financial implications of enrollment decisions without making decisions…Read more