Please welcome Dawn Boman, Associate Director of Financial Aid at Washburn University in Kansas, as a new member to RMASFAA! We also welcome Washburn back to RMASFAA; the University has not been a member since 2009.
Q: It looks like you are new to RMASFAA, but have been in financial aid since 2010. What is your educational background and what brought you to the financial aid world?
A: I graduated from Kansas State University with an elementary education degree, specializing in mathematics. I have worked in the education field, owned a floral and gift shop, worked in banking and investments and naively thought financial aid wouldn’t be much different!
Q: What brought you to Washburn University? Tell RMASFAA a bit about your school and what you do there.
A: I grew up about an hour away from Topeka and have family who graduated from Washburn, so I have heard about Washburn my whole life. When I moved back to the area, I thought Washburn would be a good place to work and as luck would have it, a position was open in the financial aid department! Washburn University was founded in 1865. The 160-acre residential campus in the heart of Topeka, KS is a public institution with more than 6,900 students and 1,000 faculty and staff involved in more than 200 academic programs that lead to certification, associate, bachelor, master’s, doctor of nursing practice and juris doctor degrees. Often our mascot is confused with being associated with “Ichabod Crane,” however Washburn University and Ichabod are named for an early benefactor to the school, Ichabod Washburn. I started in financial aid the spring of 2010 as an Administrative Specialist, was the Processing Manager overseeing all financial aid processes, and recently accepted the Associate Director position.
Q: You just attended RMASFAA’s Summer Institute in one of the “Intervanced” classes. How was your SI experience? What did you like best?
A: Golden, CO was beautiful! Being in the “mountains” (compared to Kansas!) was wonderful for the week of SI. I have attended conferences and workshops before but never an intense week of informative financial aid sessions. Meeting fellow financial aid professionals who have the same concerns was my favorite. Being able to talk concerns through with others and sometimes hearing about problems for the first time and how they are finding solutions was extremely beneficial.
Dawn was in the Dominoes class taught by Thad and Sally (or Sad and Thally, as they were known by their students… J). Here’s what her instructors had to say about Dawn:
“Dawn was terrific. She has an incredible sense of humor, and a warmth about her that will take her a long way. …[S]he has an unlimited future in financial aid…[she’s] very bright and analytical.”
“Dawn was great. Very insightful and sharp. She even thought SAIG made sense which flabbergasts me!”
Q: What is your favorite thing about your work?
A: I love the challenge of problem solving daily! You can never be bored or get complacent in this job.
Q: Do you have a favorite quote to share?
A: “Show respect even to people who don’t deserve it; not as a reflection of their character, but a reflection of yours.” But the one that seems to get me through all the changes in financial aid is “If nothing ever changed, there would be no butterflies.”
Q: What do you do for fun/hobbies/favorites?
A: I love to read and am a huge movie buff. I will read and watch anything. I used to have so many other hobbies until I had children and then started working in financial aid! J
Q: What makes you laugh the most?
A: My friends and family. I come from a long line of sarcastic humor, so I laugh a lot with my kids. Gotta pass on the tradition!
Q: If you could go back in time to change one thing, what would it be?
A: I would get a medical degree. I love everything to do with the inner workings of the human body! I even watch those surgery shows!!
Be sure to welcome any Washburn University representatives attending RMASFAA’s annual conference October 23-26 in Rapid City, SD and say hello to Dawn at the FSA conference November 29-December 2 in Atlanta!