Brazos to Cut Staff
Brazos Higher Education Service Corporation announced last week that it will lay off 163 employees, or 60% of its staff. Brazos, of Waco, Texas, is the largest nonprofit holder of loans made under the Federal Family Education Loan Program. The layoffs will be completed in stages during the spring and summer of this year. Brazos cited the crisis in the credit markets as the principal reason for its decision to cut staff. "Fallout…is being felt across markets traditionally used by student loan companies to finance lending," said Brazos of the credit crisis. Brazos also indicated that subsidy cuts to student loan lenders made by Congress last year negatively impacted student loan companies.
Columbia University Eliminates Loans for Some Students
Columbia University announced expanded financial aid for students. Students from virtually all economic backgrounds stand to benefit from the new program. Those from families earning up to $60,000 will not be required to contribute to pay for tuition, room and board, and other fees. This amount represents an increase from last year's maximum income, $50,000. Aid will also be expanded for families earning between $60,000 and $100,000, with university grants replacing loans. Columbia will pay for the new financial aid program with annual gifts, fundraising, and increased spending from the university's endowment fund.
NASFAA Releases Statement about Federal Loan Availability
The National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA) released a statement this week seeking to reassure families that federal student loans will be available for the fall semester. In a news release NASFAA cited the various sources that have indicated funds for federal student loans may be unavailable but assured families and students "federal student loans will be available to students and families this coming academic year." NASFAA assured students and families that "financial aid administrators, schools, federal lawmakers, the U.S. Department of Education, and student loan providers are all working together to ensure that no student is denied access to federal student loans."
Article Title : Brazos to Cut Staff
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