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Committee on Financial Aid to Students

The Committee on Financial Aid to Students met six times during the 2010-11 academic year and addressed the following issues:

  1. We received briefings about the entire financial aid process–Financial Aid 101, if you will–from the Office of Student Financial Services (OSFS) staff, so that we can more intelligently address concerns.
  2. There was a suggestion to move the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) priority deadline from April 1 to March 1. After a full discussion of the pros and cons of various deadlines, and with substantial input from the student members of the committee, we recommended that the deadline not be set any earlier than Spring Break, so that students would have time to meet with their parents. OFSF director Tom Melecki accepted our advice, as well as the advice of others, and set the new deadline at March 15.
  3. We discussed ways to help publicize and promote the Bevonomics program, which teaches financial literacy to students in a variety of creative ways.
  4. We were briefed on the likely effects of changing state and federal aid. The cuts are severe, and many scholarship programs have been closed to incoming students. Depending on what Congress and the State Legislature do, we may see financial aid reductions of as much as a third.
  5. A subcommittee of three faculty members on the committee is conducting a review and ranking of scholarship candidates for the Ronald M. and Marilou D. Brown Scholarships, awarded to dependents of UT employees.
  6. We elected Michael Domjan to be vice chair and chair elect.
To our great relief, we were not called upon to adjudicate any appeals of decisions regarding individual financial aid.

Lorenzo Sadun, chair