Financial Assistance Advisor and Analyst - Oakton College
Oakton Community College
Location: Skokie, Illinois
Internal Number: 159666
Location: Skokie, IL Category: Staff Posted On: Fri Mar 3 2023 Job Description:
Basic Function and Responsibility:
Determine financial aid eligibility including general eligibility, verification, awarding, and disbursement in accordance with federal, state, and institutional regulations and guidelines. This position advises prospective students, current students, family members, and community members and analyzes data and documents to supply financial resources that support student success. Actions and decisions must be performed with a high level of integrity, compliance with law, and protection of student data.
Characteristic Duties and Responsibilities:
Inform students and others on the federal, state, and institutional financial aid and scholarship processes, educational costs, and funding options including veterans' benefits. Counsel families with complex, extenuating, or unusual circumstances. Advise on eligibility requirements, special circumstances, timelines, academic requirements, and rules for financial aid programs with professionalism and compassion. Create a welcoming environment for families from diverse backgrounds. As needed, deescalate financial concerns and anxiety to support enrollment and student success.
Evaluate financial aid applications for accuracy and eligibility including financial needs analysis. Make independent decisions that align with regulations and guidance to ensure applications meet general eligibility, academic progress, residency, and verification rules. Employ professional judgment when making decisions regarding special circumstance and dependency override appeals. Interpret foreign income taxes and determine equivalencies in U.S. dollars. Ensure all conflicting data is identified, resolved, and documented. Identify, inform and support students and families who have not complied with IRS tax filing requirements or Homeland Security status requirements.
Determine financial aid awards and make adjustments in alignment with federal, state, and institutional regulations. Update cost of attendance. Resolve awarding errors and rejections. Monitor and resolve issues of overpayments, defaults, unusual enrollment and Pell and MAP grant limitations. Ensure applicants are evaluated objectively and consistently. Manage weekly processes to ensure accurate and timely awarding of financial aid funds by established deadlines.
For students using veteran benefits, confirm, report, and monitor progress and enrollment, and ensure courses are necessary for Oakton degree program. Calculate educational costs based on state or federal veteran program rules. Monitor enrollment within established reporting deadlines and submit updates. Collaborate with academic advising on courses eligible for payment. Prepare college financing plan documents. Partner with the Bursar on application of payment and return of overpayments.
Inform and communicate decisions to students. Offer in-person and virtual appointments. Respond to telephone calls. Maintain a student caseload and regularly provide updates that support financial and enrollment decisions. Utilize various forms of communication methods including electronic methods such as texting and email. Maintain accurate communication records in the student information system. Support general office email communication by regularly responding to emails sent to the departmental email address.
Perform Title IV Return of Funds calculations for students who withdraw. Examine student course schedules for the percentage of aid earned. Determine post withdrawal disbursements. Advise students on reductions in financial aid. Return funds in accordance with the order and timeframe dictated by the federal government.
Prepare student data for transmission to various federal or state agencies, and access various databases to report and/or review student information including but not limited to FAA Access to CPS online, Common Origination and Disbursement (COD), National Student Loan Database System (NSLDS), VA Once, and ISAC Gift Assistance Program (GAP).
Determine compliance with and advise students on the academic progress requirements for the financial aid programs. Direct students who do not meet requirements to academic advising for assistance with educational planning for appeals. Review and interpret student coursework in relation to academic program requirements and federal regulations. Review student academic appeals and recommend approval of financial aid for students who have mitigating circumstances and arrangements for academic success.
Serve as a liaison to special support programs such as TRIO Student Support Services, the Emory Williams Academy, STEM scholars, and Athletics in order to coordinate support and services for students. Collaborate and inform Academic Affairs and the Oakton Educational Foundation on scholarships and grants to comply with unique federal, state and institutional requirements.
As directed, determine student loan eligibility for federal direct loans and private alternative loans. Certify amounts based on eligibility requirements and aggregate loan limits. Ensure student loan entrance and exit counseling requirements, and debt management communications are conducted. Reassess loan eligibility prior to disbursing loan funds. Monitor eligibility and notify changes in enrollment status to appropriate agencies.
As directed, determine and monitor eligibility for Federal Work Study.
Conduct financial aid informational activities and presentations at on and off campus programs. This may include special admission events, high school programs, and new student/parent orientation. As directed, create content that supports students and families seeking financial support to attend Oakton.
Participate in college meetings, financial aid workshops, webinars and conferences to develop and remain current with state, regional and federal financial aid regulations and best practices. Utilize online resources (NASFAA, ISAC, and federal knowledge center) to remain current on financial aid trends and industry standards. Provide peer training and assist with training new employees. Participate in departmental policy decisions related to implementation of federal, state and institutional regulations, policies and procedures.
As directed, assist other financial aid office staff in various tasks, such as overflow assistance including the administration of the foundation scholarship program. Assist in audits, program review, assessment activities, and reconciliation. As directed, provide financial assistance services in the Enrollment Center.
Participate in Enrollment Center cross training activities. Develop a sufficient level of knowledge in at least one other student affairs functional area in order to provide more integrated and comprehensive information to students, staff, and community. Provide excellent customer service.
Participation on college committees as directed including search committees, foundation scholarship, and OPAL. Serve on the administrative withdrawal committee and financial aid academic progress appeal review as assigned.
Maintain the highest level of ethical behavior and refrain from conflicts of interest or the perception thereof. Protect the privacy of financial aid applicants and data in accordance with all state and federal status and regulations including FERPA and the Higher Education Act.
Facilitate a work environment that encourages knowledge of, respect for, and development of skills to engage with those of other cultures or backgrounds.
Perform other job-related duties as assigned.
Qualifications and Working Conditions:
Bachelor's degree required or an equivalent combination of education and experience from which comparable knowledge and abilities can be acquired is required.
Two years of experience in financial aid operations is required.
Functional experience with an integrated Student Information Systems required; expertise with Banner preferred.
Intermediate knowledge of Microsoft products. Written and computer skills necessary to prepare required reports, analysis, and documentation of outcomes.
A high level of interpersonal and communication skills are required. Incumbent must be able to give and receive advice and opinions and interact with individuals in situations requiring sensitivity and tact.
Strong organizational skills and flexibility to adjust to changing priorities.
Ability to interact professionally and tactfully with people of different levels of education, cultural backgrounds, and life experiences, and to exhibit an adequate level of respect to fellow employees and the College community at large.
Light lifting up to 10 lbs. and light carrying up to 10 lbs. Ability to reach above shoulder. Periods of time spent sitting, standing, walking, kneeling, bending and stooping. Mobility to move from building to building on-Campus and to visit off-Campus entities. Work is performed in a general office environment and is sedentary in nature. Little or no exposure to adverse working conditions.
Functional Supervision is received from the Manager of Student Financial Assistance and Senior Manager of Student Financial Assistance.
Administrative Supervision is received from the Dean of Enrollment Management.
Functional supervision may be exercised over student employees.
HOURS: Monday - Friday 8:15 am - 5:00 pm (additional hours during peak times)
Based on the needs of the college and with Administrator approval, some positions at the college may have hybrid schedule options available after 30 working days.
For 50 years, Oakton Community College has been the setting where thousands begin or continue their college or career studies. Educating people of all ages, from all walks of life and from more than 40 nations, Oakton focuses on improving the quality of life for everyone who enters its doors.