RMASFAA Presidential Update: Winter Board Meeting

I am having difficulty thinking about our time in Denver as a “winter” meeting.  When you have to open an outside door to bring in cool air, when you eat your lunch on the patio, and when you return home sporting a sunburn – that just feels more like spring to me.  But, ok, winter meeting update, here we go!

First of all, I encourage you to read the various committee reports that are posted on the RMASFAA Website.  These reports, which are available for members to read, will give you a clear picture of all the hard work your committee chairs and state delegates are doing.

A few highlights:
RMASFAA HAS OFFICIALLY ENTERED THE 21st CENTURY!
Thanks to Summer Institute, you can now use PayPal to sign up and pay online for RMASFAA activities.  Roger Matthews, EIC Chair, and David Martin, Treasurer have been working hard to expand online payment to Summer Institute, membership due payment and eventually fall conference registration.  This marks the completion of a project that has been in the works for several years.  And the people said?  AMEN!

SPEAKING OF MEMBERSHIP DUES
Have you paid yours?  The deadline for dues was March 15, 2012.  Because the reminders reached the membership a bit late this year, the board has voted to extend that deadline by 30 days.  You now have until April 15, 2012 to renew and pay so that you can a) vote in the next election, b) continue to have access to the website and list-serve, and c) pay membership rates for summer institute and the conference.

SUMMER INSTITUTE
Registration information and links to the SI Facebook site are available on the website.  SI is one of the best trainings around for new professionals (*spoiler alert* learn verification to the Dance of the Seven Veils), or prepare in a safe environment for a federal audit in the Intervanced track.

LEADERSHIP PIPELINE
Are you interested in being part of the leadership pipeline?  RMAFSAA’s leadership development program is one of the best in the country (in my humble opinion).  Applications will be out soon for both mentor and mentee.  Consider signing up!

CONFERENCE
If you check out the website, you will notice a subtle change.  “The Fine Art of Financial Aid” annual conference preview is out!  Look for registration to open soon.

ASSOCIATION NEWS
The board approved the inclusion of an automatic subscription to the RMASFAA blog with your membership.  No more figuring out how to subscribe!  The fine folks on the association news committee will do it for you.  This way you will get the blog posts, in living color and graphics, delivered directly to your inbox.  You don’t have to lift a finger.  Don’t want the blog posts to come to you this way?  One click and you can unsubscribe.

SAVING YOU MONEY
The board also approved two measures that will save the association funds and keep more of your membership dollar focused on training and membership benefits.  The first is the transition to the new NASFAA board structure.  RMASFAA’s transition plan allows our association to cut back on sending three representatives to the NASFAA board meetings one year earlier than planned.  Second, President Elect Jeff Jacobs is streamlining his transition activities for the new board by beefing up the Sunday transition meeting during the annual conference.  This allows him to excuse the state delegates from the “working” meeting on Friday.

CELEBRATING THE FINANCIAL AID PROFESSIONAL
Watch the website and blog for resources to toot your horn!  Financial aid officers are a valuable resource to their college communities.  In preparation for Financial Aid Professional’s Day (the third Wednesday in October), RMASFAA’s board will be providing templates that you can use to celebrate what we do in your home state.  In the immortal words of Stuart Smalley, “You are good enough!  You are smart enough!  And doggone it, people like you!”

Have a great month of March, RMASFAA.  Janet, Jeff and I will see you all on the road very soon!

Brenda Hicks
RMASFAA President

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