As your current regional voting representative on the NASFAA Board of Directors, I wanted to take a moment to update you on current events and happenings within our terrific national association. The NASFAA Board of Directors met March 1-2, 2017 in Washington D.C. As is typical of NASFAA Board agendas, our two-day meeting was informative, intense, and exceedingly productive. Key discussion items included:
- Updates and continued discussion on regional/national alignment efforts, and the work of the current “thought force” charged with examining our organizational structures, operational activities, and programming.
- Final overview of architectural renderings of the new NASFAA Office, to be located at 1801 Pennsylvania Avenue, along with transition plans for NASFAA staff and services.
- Updates on Financial Affairs and related strategic initiatives, including how NASFAA might cultivate additional revenue opportunities for the association while also providing a greater number of benefits to our membership.
- Updates from NASFAA’s Ethics Commission and the recent work of that group (led by RMASFAA’s own Mary Sommers) related to recent inquiries that necessitated commission review.
- A “DC Update” from Justin Draeger, which outlined three flash points for expected policy discussions:
- One Grant/One Loan and Campus-Based Aid
- Graduate and Parent Borrowing
- Title IV Funding (in general)
- Board approval of a NASFAA report to FSA detailing concerns related to GE reporting, FSA’s status as a performance-based organization, responsiveness to constituents, and overreach in policymaking.
- A US Department of Education update from Jeff Baker, Craig Munier, Carney McCullough, and Nathan Arnold.
- Updates from the National College Access Network (NCAN).
Complete minutes from the Board of Directors meeting are accessible to members on the NASFAA website.
As part of my NASFAA responsibilities, I have been recently tasked with chairing a national advocacy network charged with 1.) Engaging members of congress to advocate for student aid policy and issues facing our profession, 2.) Assisting NASFAA staff in developing materials and communicating the value of federal financial aid programs to policymakers, and 3.) Working with advocacy network members to engage with fellow aid administrators to amplify our efforts where possible. I am thrilled with the group of connected and influential financial aid colleagues who we’ve assembled for this network and look forward to the work ahead of us during this challenging time.
Thank you for the opportunity to serve both our Rocky Mountain region and NASFAA. I have been beyond honored for this experience!
-Joe Donlay, 2016-17 RMASFAA Past-President