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Murphy, Thomas H. (ed.) / Wisconsin alumnus
Vol. 70, Number 3 (Dec. 1968)

Student financial aids,   p. 11


Page 11


STUDENT FINANCIAL AIDS
   The costs of going to college are
 rising while the need for a college
 education increases. Caught by these
 pressures, many students and par-
 ents are searching for information
 on available financial assistance.
Wallace H. Douma--di-rector of
-Student-FinanciahAids at the Uni-
versity, recently answered our ques-
tions on what resources are available
and how one might apply for them.
Q. Will you give us an estimate of
what it costs a student for a year at
the University?
A. Yes. The average annual cost, if
he's a Wisconsin resident and lives
in a dorm or otherwise pays rent, is
about $1,850. A non-resident will
require about $2,650. These figures
include fees, tuition, books and sup-
plies, room and board, plus some-
thing for travel, recreation and per-
sonal expenses. If a student does not
have to pay room and board, he
saves about $500.
Q. What kinds of financial aids are
available?
A. There are loans, scholarships, and
jobs for students. Funds for the
loans and scholarships come from
private donations and the state and
federal governments. Local industry,
private citizens, and the University
are our job sources.
Q. How should parents or students
proceed to get financial help?
A. Here in the state of Wisconsin it
would be best to start by contacting
the local high school's guidance
counselor for the financial aid appli-
cation blank we accept. Out-of-state
people or Wisconsinites whose coun-
sellors don't have the blanks can get
them by writing to our office here at
310 N. Murray street.
Q. What are some of the require-
ments for getting loans and scholar-
ships?
A. Financial need is one obvious
yardstick, of course. We ask parents
to fill out a confidential statement
of their income, assets, and liabili-
ties. On the basis of this statement
the University can determine the
gap between what parents and stu-
dents can provide and the cost of
education. Parents are expected to
continue to provide- support for the
student at-the same levet they did
while he was in high school, plus
contributing a portion of the fam-
ily's discretionary income. (Discre-
tionary income is money which can
be spent after a moderate standard
of living is maintained). Obviously,
families with the lowest discretion-
ary income get first chance at our re-
sources.
  When a scholarship (as opposed
to a loan) is involved, we estimate
scholastic ability on the bases of past
academic record, the local school
counselor's recommendations, and
tests. So scholastic excellence is im-
portant in applying for a scholar-
ship. The only academic requirement
for a loan, however, is satisfactory
progress toward a degree.
  Our office makes the final decision
on who will get funds, according to
guidelines established by state and
federal governments and the faculty
committee.
Q. How much can a student borrow?
A. The maximum would normally
be $2,500 in one year for a married
grad student from out-of-state.
Q. When must repayment begin?
A. Not till the student is out of
school, then he has a maximum of
ten years to complete repayment.
Most of our loan programs cost the
borrower three percent simple an-
nual interest. I'm pleased to say that
we have a very low default rate.
Q. How are their grades affected
when students take jobs?
A. Our research indicates that lower
grades don't occur when a student
works up to 15 hours a week. If the
student is working more than that,
he should probably take a lighter
academic load than otherwise.
Q. What work is available to stu-
dents?
A. The University offers many jobs
in offices and residence halls. Local
industry offers a wide range of
work. The positions are tailored to
fit the students' schedule each se-
mester: our employers are very flexi-
ble. Some students prefer a steady
schedule, while other work about
the same amount of time at odd
jobs of irregular duration.
Q. Do you think the students learn
something about financial manage-
ment when you work with them?
A. I'm sure of it: we survey them,
and quite recently one of our polls
showed that the majority would
work more and borrow less if they
had it to do over. I'd call that a
good lesson in finances. We do quite
a bit of counseling, to help them
keep their debt as small as possible
and to encourage them to plan in
advance for financial needs. Of
course, we still maintain funds for
bona fide emergencies such as Family
illness, emergency travel, etc.
Q. How many students have used
your services during the past year?
A. We have more than 18,500 in
our active files, meaning that this
many have come to us for some rea-
son-for help in finding a job, or
asking about a loan, or maybe just
to get some advice about financial
problems.
Q. What changes would you like to
make in the financial aids program
If funds were available?
A. We need more gift money to
help the average student. There are
practically no resources available to
the B and C student. Many times he
is a very worthwhile individual, but
we can't help him because our grant
and gift funds are tied to top schol-
arships or the extremely disadvan-
taged. 0
December-January, 1969
11


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