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SESSION: A LOOK AT UCC’s FINANCIAL AID SOLUTION
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  1. SESSION: A LOOK AT UCC’s FINANCIAL AID SOLUTION Presenters: • Jacob Geluk, Data Management Coordinator UCC Registrar’s Office • Dennis Mayberry, Registrar

  2. Electronic Confirmation of Enrollment – The Challenge • Students are waiting in line • Processing is labour intensive • Processing is slow • We do not have an automatic audit trail of who we approved

  3. ECE Design Considerations: • It must handle 90% of the workload without human intervention • It must be accurate • It must be simple to maintain • There must be a manual override for the inevitable exceptions • There must be a good audit trail

  4. ECE Platform Choice: MS Access • We used the tool I was most familiar with • The staff were familiar with MS Access • Access is good for creating reports • Lack of training in Colleague case tool – If I were to do it again I would use Envision.

  5. ECE Diagram

  6. ECE: Information Flow (IN) • Ministry ECE requests • Student Enrollment information • Student Program Information • Financial Aid Institutional Appendix information

  7. (1) Ministry ECE Requests • Lists of students who have approved loans • The ministry needs to verify that they are enrolled as full time students • Available at their FTP site as a text file, CON_008.TXT, which is updated daily

  8. (2) Student Enrollment • Student enrollment is stored in colleague • Can be extracted from colleague using Cedarville download into a text file • Since we only need snapshots of enrollment text file extracts are a simple solution

  9. (3) Student Program Information • As with enrollment, student program information is stored in colleague • Text files are simple to use • Snapshot information actually more desirable than live information here as it will remain consistent while staff verify how the automated portion of the system has flagged students

  10. (4) Finaid Institutional Appendix • This information is maintained in the access database • Details of what is full time for a given program • This is the biggest weakness of using MS access - having to maintain information outside of colleague

  11. Outputs: • ECE replies to ministry • Reports for Finaid • Activity logs

  12. Replies to Ministry • Ministry looks for a file CONR_008.TXT on their FTP site nightly • File must meet ministry specifications and have a correct header and footer

  13. Reports for Financial Aid • Printed reports of the details of how the applications were processed • ECE decision information is also archive in an access table

  14. (3) Activity Logs • ECE information is archived in a history table in access before the CONR_008.TXT file is created • Before a new CONR_008.TXT export file is created the previous one is archived • All errors are logged in an error log • Import details are logged in an import table

  15. Processing ECE • Preparation of appendix • Importing data • Merging data • Performing manual overrides • Exporting the confirmation file

  16. Main Menu Screen

  17. Two Ways to Calculate Full Time • By current semester: Winter – 9 credits Summer – 12 credits Fall – 9 credits • By terms attended E.G. Term 1 – 12 credits Term 2 – 14 credits

  18. By Current Semester

  19. By Terms Attended

  20. Importing Data • All data is imported as text files • Tables are cleared before every import • Ministry file is checked for completeness • Header exists • Footer exists • Record count (ministry file has blank lines divide by two and subtract one)

  21. Merging Data • Student numbers are sanitized – spaces and dashes are stripped • Program information is applied to students • Full time requirements are calculated for each student based on program info • Credits are totalled for each student based on a query against imported enrollment data

  22. Full Time Status Is Determined • For each student their full time status requirement is compared to their eligible registered credits • Students are flagged as to whether they meet their requirement for full time status

  23. Students Are Flagged For Manual Intervention If: • They have more than one academic program • Their birth date or name does not match between the colleague and ministry extracts • They were flagged as a disabled student • Their program was flagged for manual intervention • They do not meet the requirements for full time enrollment (only a staff member can say no)

  24. ECE Manual Intervention • Before an extract for upload to the ministry can be produced all students flagged for manual processing must be checked as either: • Approved • Not approved • Deferred

  25. Manual Processing Options • If the “send doc” flag is checked then the loan application will be sent to UCC rather than to the student • If an amount is entered in the “pay to school” field then a cheque for that amount will be made out to UCC directly

  26. Manual Processing Screen

  27. Export File To Ministry • The previous export file (CONR_008.Txt) is archived • A new export file (CONR_008.Txt) is created • The CONR_008.Txt file will automatically be transferred to the ministry FTP server that evening

  28. Results: • No line-ups at the financial aid office • Staff are freed up to do other work • Good audit trail • Very few calls for maintenance assistance

  29. Questions ?