Don’t be mad at the Financial Aid Office, be mad at the DOE
It is no secret that students were concerned after Seton Hall’s Financial Aid Office announced a new attendance confirmation process for the 2018 spring semester.
Gone are the days of students verifying their own attendance for their classes. That is now dependent on the professors, as is the distribution of students’ federal aid money.
When it comes to financial aid, college students are going to react emotionally.
It is understandable since many rely on the aid in order to attend college. So when something as simple as checking a box in Portal at the beginning of every semester gets taken away and the promise of affording university fees is placed in the hands of someone else, it is only natural that the student body is struck with a surge of anxiety.
Students shouldn’t be completely freaked out, though.
It is important to remember the details of the information. Director of Financial Aid, Javonda Asante, explained the change to The Setonian.
“According to the DOE guidelines, certification of initial attendance is required from the faculty members in each class,” Asante said.
“This is the reason for the change in the process. If the University does not appropriately comply with these regulations, we are at risk of fines from the federal government,” she added.
It is clear that the reason for the change is beyond Seton Hall’s Financial Aid Department’s pay grade.
After all, the school must abide by the federal regulations. The DOE. Specifically states that faculty are required to verify students’ attendance.
Therefore, Seton Hall had to shift in order to fall within government guidelines.
It can be so easy to lash out at the closest target when we are scared of an unknown. In this case, that appeared to be SHU’s Financial Aid Office.
Given that this is a federal requirement, the anger was misplaced – if students have an issue with the policy, it should be taken up with the government, not SHU’s Financial Aid Office, which is just doing its job.
Kiera Alexander is a sophomore journalist major from Sacramento, Calif. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org