Notes from the EARP Federal Financial Aid Subcommittee

By Katherine Meyer posted 12-08-2021 11:58 AM


In the past few years a lot has changed in our world: COVID-19’s ripple effects, new people in the White House, new university modalities, office turnover, etc.  One thing that should be considered a constant is NAFSA and the Education Abroad Regulatory Practice (EARP) mission to help keep the field on top of the changes to federal policies from Washington, D.C.. 

As the chair of the EARP’s Federal Financial Aid Subcommittee, I’ve worked with a team of amazing professionals around the nation to create and update existing resources for the field. I have no doubt this record will continue for many years to come because this group and our partners are a dedicated bunch!

The following is a list of just some of resources that you might find helpful, no matter your experience level with financial aid or role in education abroad:

When in doubt, this is a great first place to look as it compiles basic information and a general overview on what resources are available. It includes FAQs for multiple topics to help the field keep a running list of some of the more common questions. These are maintained by the subcommittee:

  • GI Bill benefits have changed dramatically since 2019. Information on those changes and what NAFSA has done to better advocate for our student veterans can be found on this page. The transcript of a Collegial Conversation on the topic is also available for NAFSA members. 
  • In 2020, the 3rd edition of the Handbook on Financial Aid for Education Abroad was released for purchase to those who want or need a deep dive into the regulations and inner workings of the regulations behind federal aid and their use for education abroad.
  • Also, in 2020, we launched an E-Learning Express on Financial aid as a crash course for busy professionals in addition to the other E-Learning courses which can be purchased on demand.
  • An amazing student guide titled Funding Your Education Abroad became available in 2021 and can be purchased in single copies or packs of 40 to be distributed by your office. 

The subcommittee members in conjunction with our networks around the regions work hard to ensure that sessions on financial aid and funding are available at conferences both regional and national. Look for the session “Top Funding Challenges for Study Abroad” at the NAFSA 2022 Annual Conference in Denver. Slides from the 2021 NAFSA All Region Conference session are available here.

As I transition off the subcommittee, I want to assure the field that the EARP members and the Federal Aid Subcommittee will continue to work to keep you apprised of changes or general training to help administrators provide support to students. I thank all the other financial aid for study abroad rockstars in the field for their continued collaboration and service. With your help we can do more to advocate and build a more inclusive study abroad field.

I hope your 2021 had many joyous events to even out some of the challenging ones, and that your 2022 will be a healthy and happy one!

Katherine Mary “Kate” Meyer

EARP Federal Financial Aid Subcommittee Chair 2018-2021