Behind the News

Changes on horizon for campus cards, Title IV payments

Proposed regulations could lead to big cash management concerns

Colleges and universities using third-party providers to process students’ Title IV payments face changes aimed at giving students more choice in receiving financial aid dollars. A new federal proposal could especially affect institutions that issue tuition refunds directly to students’ debit cards.

Financial services providers react to DOE’s proposed debit card rule

Proposal includes restrictions on fees and limitations on access to student information

If it’s finalized as is by Nov. 1, The Department of Education proposed rule on campus debit cards and Title IV payments will have a major impact on third-party service providers.

Some of the regulations in the rule include restrictions on fees and limitations on access to student information. It would also require schools to issue paper checks as an option, even if they’ve already gone paperless.

Sen. McCaskill calls for an end to Clery Act

Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill proposed bill that would require more effective reporting

Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill of Missouri says the Clery Act, signed into law in 1990, has outlived its usefulness.

Speaking in June to a national conference hosted by Campus Safety magazine, McCaskill said the current law “doesn’t accomplish squat.” If McCaskill gets her wish, Clery would be replaced with a law that requires more effective reporting. “To be honest with you, I am OK removing the Clery Act completely,” she said.

More colleges investing with impact

Endowments supporting sustainability without sacrificing returns

Fossil fuel and private prison divestment may make the biggest headlines when it comes to how colleges invest endowment funds—but it’s not actually that common a practice. A growing number of colleges and universities now seek bigger impacts—and substantial financial returns—with a strategy known as “ESG.”

When colleges bounce back from the brink

Antioch College this past spring graduated its first class—of 21 students—after having been closed from 2008 to 2011

Your school has been rescued—now what? How do you restore students’ and parents’ faith in your revived institution? Institutions like Antioch and Sweet Briar are paving the way.

Social media campaigns engage donors

Also popular are social media-based days of giving and crowdfunding events

When it comes to fundraising, most colleges and universities surveyed (59 percent) boost their effort through social media.

Also popular are social media-based days of giving and crowdfunding events. Of the 42 percent that held a day of giving, more than one-third raised over $50,000 that day. And of the 15 percent that crowdfunded, half earned more than $10,000 per year.

From overseas to the American community college

Growing an international presence on two-year-college campuses

Lone Star College has the fourth highest number of international students among U.S. two-year institutions, but the Houston-area school does not recruit abroad aggressively. Like many community colleges, it relies on local immigrant communities to spread the word with friends and family in foreign countries.

Growing trend: Corporations providing college tuition as employee benefit

Number of larger corporations offering these programs expected to grow

Starbucks made headlines last spring as more than just a campus hot spot when it announced a free college tuition plan for its employees. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and health insurance company Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield have now followed suit, and Starbucks has expanded its program.

While each corporation is partnering with a specific higher ed institution, the plans and stipulations vary:

Live videocasts hold promise for college marketers

Colleges and universities testing live-video-streaming app called Periscope

In March, Twitter unveiled its newest acquisition, a live video streaming app called Periscope. Following closely on the heels of a rival app called Meerkat, Periscope made waves by enabling anyone with a mobile device (iOS or Android) to broadcast from virtually anywhere. The apps allow viewers to interact with broadcasters through a chat feature.

Arizona State and edX offer full freshman year of MOOCs

Students can take classes for free but must pay fees to earn credits

Online learning, specifically MOOCs, has inspired many doomsday forecasts regarding the fate of traditional higher education—which, of course, has yet to collapse.

But the predicted death of MOOCs—due to erratic completion rates, lack of formal student support and concerns about the financial returns for institutions—hasn’t come true either.

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