Financial Aid Application Team Specialist
American Public University System - Charles Town, WV

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Reports To: Manager, Financial Aid Application Team
  • Department: Finance
  • Location: Charles Town, WV
  • FLSA Status: Non-Exempt
  • Date Posted: November 19, 2012
  • Date Closing: Open Until Filled
  • Synopsis of Role:

    The Financial Aid Application Team Specialist serves as a front line resource for American Public University System (APUS) by assisting students with questions about the financial aid process, assisting in the completion of the Federal Student Aid (FSA) Application, supporting students in the understanding and navigation of the online Virtual Financial Aid Office (VFAO), serving as a point person for Admissions Representatives who have students with financial aid questions, and serving as a liaison between students, Global Financial Aid Services (FAS) and APUS Financial Services Department, as necessary.

    This position requires engagement in student recruitment, admissions and/or financial aid activities, and therefore, is ineligible to receive certain types of incentive compensation.

    Essential Functions:
    • Responds to telephone and e-mail inquiries from students during the federal student aid process and advises students about the process.
    • Serves as a liaison between financial aid applicants, Global FAS and the University‚Äôs Financial Services Department.
    • Assists students via telephone, e-mail, and chat regarding the financial aid application and award process.
    • Proactively resolves issues, escalations, and files rejections through a broad knowledge base of FSA processes, rules and regulations as well as APUS and Global FAS policies, processes and procedures.
    • Collects financial information from applicants in an atmosphere of confidentiality and in compliance with federal privacy laws.
    • Maintains positive working relationships with other University departments to ensure stellar customer service.
    • Makes recommendations for procedural, Web site, and software improvements for increased efficiency.
    • Keeps workstation organized and professional.
    • Becomes proficient with all APUS database systems.
    • Monitors and tracks progress of assigned students through the financial aid software program, Virtual Financial Aid Office (VFAO).
    • Provides quality assurance for completed files and student budgets.
    • Troubleshoots tier-one information technology issues preventing student progression through the VFAO or APUS database.
    • Analyzes student progression data to monitor personal performance.
    • Works within established guidelines as required by the Department of Education as it relates to financial aid and proper department guidelines.
    • Reports unusual or non-compliant issues to Financial Aid Application Team Managers.
    • Meets or exceeds performance goals as determined by the Associate Vice President of Financial Services and the Senior Manager of the Financial Aid Application Team.
    • Performs other duties as assigned.
    Work Environment and Physical Demands:
    • Standard office environment in Charles Town, WV.

    Required Skills
    • Works independently or with limited supervision on multiple complex assignments requiring application of a well-defined knowledge of the discipline.
    • Ability to exhibit strong problem solving skills and the ability to identify and troubleshoot technical problems the student may encounter.
    • Ability to handle escalated student issues calmly and appropriately.
    • Ability to research student files, government databases and other sources to analyze and resolve student issues.
    • Excellent verbal and written communication skills.
    • Excellent attention to detail.
    • Ability to multi-task.
    • Excellent customer service skills.
    • Proficient with Web-based software applications.
    Required Experience
    • Bachelor's degree preferred.
    • Minimum two years experience in a call center or customer service or related position OR one year experience working in a financial aid services position required.

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