Financial Aid Compliance Counselor

Employer
Missouri Southern State University
Location
Missouri, United States
Salary
Salary Not Specified
Posted Date
Jun 21, 2022

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Position Type
Faculty Positions, Business & Management, Accounting & Finance, Administrative, Business & Administrative Affairs, Financial Affairs, Student Affairs, Counseling, Disabled Student Services, Financial Aid
Employment Type
Full Time

The Financial Aid Compliance Counselor advises and counsels students applying for financial aid and determines initial and continued eligibility for assistance. This position analyzes, processes, awards, and revises financial aid packages for students including all financial aid programs administered by MSSU. In addition, counselor is responsible for all coordination of the Return of Title IV funds process, beginning with the withdrawal of students through the return of funds, and ultimately exit counseling.

Specific Duties and Responsibilities

Essential Duties:

Awards and administers federal, state, and institutional Financial Aid programs on behalf of undergraduate and graduate student applicants through the financial aid packaging process. Determines amount of aid based on eligibility criteria for each award program, need of students, and funds available.

Requests, collects, and reviews financial aid documents for accuracy, completeness, and compliance with federal and state financial aid policies to determine student’s actual needs and financial aid awards.

Completes the verification process and compares data on FAFSA applications with federal tax returns, academic transcripts, and eligibility criteria for multiple award programs, making corrections to student applications as needed.

Provides financial aid counseling to prospective, new and returning students regarding financial aid availability, application process, eligibility, academic progress, degree requirements, deadlines, processing dates, and procedures. Further provides counseling to parents about completion of necessary financial aid forms and understanding financial policies, regulations, and requirements.

Provides students with counseling on available financial aid based upon changes to their Plan of Study documentation. Makes financial assessments based upon course variances, and recommends the most efficient course of study for the student.

Conducts presentations to campus and regional community personnel at scheduled events, including area high-school Financial Aid Nights. Presentation information includes completing the FAFSA, the financial aid awarding process, and required procedures regarding financial aid eligibility.

Determines which students are eligible for special consideration of awards through professional judgment and override situations, and explains documentation and regulatory requirements to students and parents as needed. Coordinates professional judgment committee meetings for internal review.

Reviews and determines eligibility for students not meeting Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) standards due to reaching maximum credit-hour timeframe or unusual enrollment history. Process Time Limit and Unusual Enrollment History appeals. Counsels students about academic progress and its effect on financial aid eligibility.

Maintains and reviews student award packages for compliance and prevention of overawards. Revises student financial aid packages as needed when additional aid awards are posted.

Assists and counsels students with Consortium Agreement, Study Abroad and Alternative Loan processes to ensure compliance with federal regulations.

Counsels and advises students inquiring about the partial or total withdrawal of courses, and the impact such withdrawal may have on future financial aid eligibility. Calculates all Federal Return of Title IV Aid refunds based on date of withdrawal and ensures compliance with regulatory deadlines for the refund of federal funds to the respective aid programs. Generates electronic refunds to federal aid programs, including Pell, SEOG, TEACH, Direct Loan, and PLUS Loan in cooperation with MSSU Bursar’s Office procedures.

Maintains correspondence with students who owe Return of Title IV Aid balance as a result of official/unofficial withdrawal processes. Also counsels students regarding their options, (and the consequences of these actions), regarding post-withdrawal disbursements. Notifies students who are at-risk of losing aid eligibility when students are not meeting Satisfactory Academic Progress standards at mid-term of the semester.

Provides exit counseling for borrowers receiving Federal Direct Loans: including reviewing history of outstanding loans, lender contact information, interest rates and accrual methods, repayment options, including benefits of consolidation, loan forgiveness, and other financial tools to ensure repayment compliance. Presents options for students who are graduating or stopping loan repayment, including consolidation, forbearance, and economic hardship or other type of deferment.

Monitors compliance of regulatory guidelines and new regulations as appropriate.

Maintain complete and accurate records as required for completion of internal and external reporting requirements.

Contributes to broad-based management of Financial Aid Office by providing input to office policy and procedure decisions.

Creates and provides input on financial aid brochures, forms, publications, and web pages.

Assists in Financial Aid reception area as support during peak times and as needed in other areas.

Works with other campus departments to ensure smooth delivery of services.

Performs other related duties as assigned.

Education, Experience, and Licenses

Bachelor's degree from an accredited four-year college or university is required.

Two to three years related experience and/or training preferred; or an equivalent combination of education and experience.

Demonstrated knowledge of federal financial aid regulations preferred. Experience in handling multiple tasks and a customer service orientation with a commitment to higher education and working with students a plus. Willingness to travel occasionally as required for presentations, meetings, and training workshops.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Excellent organizational, verbal and written communication skills.
  • Ability to work collaboratively as part of a team environment.
  • Ability to manage or administer funds.
  • Ability to use computers for word processing and/or accounting purposes.
  • Ability to use highly technical computer applications, such as Banner, Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, Access, PowerPoint), and other web-based applications to perform office duties.
  • Ability to maintain highest level of confidentiality in accordance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).

Physical Demands/Work Environment

The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to talk or hear including the use of the telephone. The employee frequently is required to stand. The employee is occasionally required to walk; sit; use hands to finger, handle, or feel including the use of a computer keyboard; reach with hands and arms; and stoop, kneel, or crouch. The employee must frequently lift and/or move up to 50 pounds. Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, color vision, peripheral vision, depth perception, and ability to adjust focus.

The noise level in the work environment is usually moderate.

NOTICE: The above job profile does not include all essential and nonessential duties of this job. All employees with disabilities are encouraged to contact Human Resources to review and discuss the essential and nonessential functions of the job. An employee with a disability can evaluate the job in greater detail to determine if she/he can safely perform the essential function of this job with or without reasonable accommodation.

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