President's Message

Fall Conference Wrap-Up

Member News

Upcoming Events

Caught on Film

Fin. Aid Bills in Congress

SCAN is produced by the Southwest Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators. SWASFAA is a professional organization with a diverse membership and SCAN works toward providing a forum for communicating to the membership news and issues affecting the student aid profession in the Southwest region. The ideas and opinions expressed in this forum do not necessarily reflect the viewpoints of SWASFAA, its board of directors, or its members.

Contributions to the SCAN
The next SCAN will be coming in June! Please forward any announcements, calendar items, or other stories of interest to Ron Hancock at Ron1BOk@aol.com.

Welcome to the New SWASFAA SCAN!  I'm excited that this information source is once again available to our membership. Inside you will find interesting items on our active committees, state association interaction, details of coming events and a look inside the SWASFAA membership.

Several development activities are going on in SWASFAA right now. One of which is our pursuit of information from our membership related to the structure of our association. Many members have expressed their difficulties with getting their institutions to support payment of individual membership dues. In Oklahoma, for example, that is expressly forbidden by state legislation. Also it has been a difficulty for some to have to watch who is involved with SWASFAA at any given time, as it may increase the number of dues their office needs to cover.

In light of this, Beverly Cottingham, our SWASFAA Membership Committee Chair, created the membership survey several of you completed recently, to help us determine if a switch to institutional membership is warranted. This is very significant as the basis of our membership structure is engrained within our association constitution. Such a change would involve a number of issues be fully addressed, a plan constructed and ultimately a vote by the association. Thank you to those who contributed your thoughts by completing the survey.

Our Mid-Level Financial Aid Workshop is coming up in June. Your Board of Directors toured the facility to be used at Centenary College in January. It will be an excellent site for this advanced training event. Linda Neel is actively leading the Continuing Education Committee in developing this function with the help of SASFAA representatives/ trainers. Mark your calendars and complete your registration form now online to "Sharpen Your Skills In Shreveport"!

I have started encouraging our congressional delegation to look out for our students and our institutions. In one letter, developed with great help from George Torres, SWASFAA Legislative Issues Committee Chair, I encouraged our representatives from each SWASFAA state to fully support HR12 - the FEDUP initiative written by Howard P. "Buck" McKeon. In it a reinstatement of the expired loan provisions allowing for elimination of the 30-day delay and split disbursements for single terms is requested. Further it would create legislation that would help Hispanic serving institutions, ease the drug abuse regulations and give other technical assistance we all need in the making the delivery of student aid more effective.

We are also positioning ourselves to have a strong voice during the process of reauthorization. I trust that SWASFAA members will not be shy about the needs our students have. There is much at stake during this reauthorization and only through an active communication channel can we accomplish making the changes needed. Your voice matters. I encourage you to use it.

It is my sincere hope you will enjoy the SCAN and be an active part of SWASFAA this year!

Thomas M. Ratliff, M.B.A.
SWASFAA President


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