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I would recommend waiting a week.  Things could change very quickly.


Georgine Materniak wrote:
>
> FYI
> I'm passing this info on that I received from a colleague.
>
> Georgine Materniak
> Director
> University of Pittsburgh
> Learning Skills Center
> 311 William Pitt Union
> Pittsburgh, PA  15260
> phone:  (412)648-7920
> fax:    (412)648-7924
> e-mail: [log in to unmask]
>
> "Life is what happens while you are making other plans" John Lennon
>
> ---------- Forwarded message ----------
> Date: Thu, 22 Jan 1998 11:19:09 -0500
> From: Cheryl Lovell <[log in to unmask]>
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: NASPA Public Policy Alert
>
> RELEASED January 22, 1998
>
> !!!!!!!! NASPA PUBLIC POLICY ALERT !!!!!!!!
>
> Attention NASPA members:
>
> On Tuesday, January 14th an emergency meeting of higher education
> governmental relations officers was held in Washington, DC to discuss
> strategies to combat the recent news of President Clinton's proposal to
> eliminate Perkins Loans.  Every association is encouraging its members
> to contact the White House comment line at (202) 456-1414 and the Office
> of Public Liaison at the White House at (202) 456-2930.  Therefore, we
> ask our NASPA members to contact these offices IMMEDIATELY to express
> your opposition to the proposed elimination of this important loan
> program.  We also recommend you contact your Congressional
> Representatives and your campus and local newspapers to inform them of
> this devastating proposal.
> It appears Clinton's recommendation to eliminate the Perkins Loan is a
> reversal of policy previously backed by the White House administration
> and the US Department of Education.
>
> We suggest you refer to the attached copy of the Federal Perkins Loan
> Program Fact Sheet and a draft letter which would be appropriate for
> sending to your elected officials.  Please feel free to incorporate this
> information into the letters and the calls you make.  It is imperative
> we express our concern to these officials and that they understand the
> proposed elimination of the Perkins Loan Program will have a significant
> impact to our students and campus communities.
>
> Should you need additional information or desire to discuss this
> important issue, please feel free to contact Gwen Dungy at
> [log in to unmask] or contact Cheryl Lovell at [log in to unmask]  The NASPA
> Public Policy Advisory
> Committee is committed to addressing issues of concern to our members
> and to the millions of students you represent.  However, we need each of
> you to also play an active role in this process.  Your telephone calls
> and letters will make a tremendous difference.  Please follow up TODAY.
> This proposal can be reversed if the administration hears from concerned
> citizens.
>
> Thank you for your immediate attention to this important public policy
> alert.
>
> Cheryl D. Lovell, Chair
> NASPA Public Policy Advisory Committee
> Assistant Professor of Education and Coordinator of
>  Master's Program in Higher Education and Adult Studies
> University of Denver
>
> Attachments:
> Federal Perkins Loan Program Fact Sheet
> Sample Letter to Member of Congress
> "What you can do" strategies list
> **********
>
> Cheryl D. Lovell, Ph.D.
> Assistant Professor of Education and
>  Coordinator of Master's Program in
>  Higher Education and Adult Studies
> College of Education
> University of Denver
> 2450 S. Vine St., Room 229
> Denver, CO 80208
> 303.871.2479 (voice)
> 303.871.4456 (fax)
> [log in to unmask]
>
> FEDERAL PERKINS LOAN PROGRAM FACT SHEET
>
> The Federal Perkins Loan Program, formerly the National Defense Student
> Loan Program was authorized by the National Education Act of 1958 and is
> the oldest federally supported student aid program.  The program offers
> -low interest loans to students of higher education institutions through
> campus revolving funds.  New funds are added to the revolving fund by a
> federal and institutional matching contribution.
>
> The program fosters access to postsecondary education for low income
> borrowers by providing low interest loans with favorable terms during a
> period of declining grant availability.
>
> Perkins loan borrowers are predominantly from lower income families.
> Approximately 83 percent of the undergraduate dependent borrowers are
> from families with incomes of $30,000 or below.  Approximately 25%
> percent of these borrowers are from families with incomes of $18,000 or
> below.
>
> Perkins loans have a 5 percent interest rate which begins to accrue
> after a 9 month grace period when the borrower ceases to be a student.
> The loans carry a number of cancellation provisions for public service
> through VISTA, the Peace Corps and teacher shortage areas.
>
> >From program inception over $15 billion in loans were made to 10 million
> borrowers from the $6 billion federal dollars appropriated for the
> program.  In 1991-92, according to analysts at the Department of
> Education, 654,244 students borrowed  $867,800,439 in loans, with an
> average amount of $1326.00 awarded per student.  The cohort default rate
> of 11 percent for the program is low when compared to other federal loan
> programs and is extremely impressive when you consider the borrower
> population.  The success of the program should be attributed to the
> central role of the education institution which originates the loan,
> counsels the borrower through repayment. selects contractors for
> servicing and collection; ultimately tailoring the program to best fit
> the borrower's and institution's needs.  Perkins is a risk-sharing
> program with an institutional match to new federal contributions of 15
> percent in the 1993-94 award year, increasing to 25 percent in
> subsequent years.
>
> for additional information on the Federal Perkins Loan Program contact.-
>
> Ellin Nolan     Judith Nemerovski Flink
> COHEAO Consultant       President, COHEAO
> 202-289-3910    312-996-2515
>
> Prepared by the Coalition of Higher Education Assistance Organizations
> (COHEAO)
>
> WHY IS THE FEDERAL PERKINS LOAN PROGRAM NECESSARY?
>
> WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO STUDENTS IF THEY CAN NO LONGER APPLY FOR FEDERAL
> PERKINS LOANS?
>
> Without access to a Federal Perkins Loan, many prospective students will
> not be able to pursue a post-secondary education, particularly at a time
> of escalating college costs.  They will be forced to walk away from the
> opportunity to improve their lives through the pursuit of their
> academic, vocational and professional goals.  Further, many currently
> enrolled students receiving Federal Perkins Loans would not be able to
> return to finish school, consequently dropping graduation rates.
>
> About 83 percent of undergraduate Federal Perkins Loan borrowers are
> from families with incomes at or below $30,000.  Twenty-five percent of
> these borrowers are from families with incomes of $18,000 or less.
> Since its establishment in 1958, the Federal Perkins Loan Program has
> made a postsecondary education possible for over 10 million of these
> low-income borrowers.  Since federal legislation places limits on
> student borrowing, it would be virtually impossible for them to pay for
> college without a Federal Perkins Loan.  The alternative, in many
> instances, is a PLUS (parent loan) or a private loan.  These
> alternatives are far more costly and, for certain students, not even an
> option because of poor credit history, lack of credit-worthy co-signers,
> or
>
> COULDN'T THE FEDERAL PERKINS LOAN PROGRAM SURVIVE WITHOUT THE FEDERAL
> CAPITAL CONTRIBUTION (FCC)?
>
> The Federal Perkins Loan Program is notable fbr its structure-students
> who benefit from access to Perkins capital help keep the doors of
> post-secondary education open for those who follow with every loan
> repayment check they send to their institution.  However, the FCC is
> critical to insuring the longevity of the Federal Perkins Loan Program
> for several reasons: it covers the default costs which even the best run
> programs face; it meets the needs of increased numbers of eligible
> students; and it covers costs that allows campuses to best meet
> students' needs.  The formula that determines campus-specific
> appropriations is need-based, with consideration given to prior-year
> collections.  The true impact of the elimination of the FCC on the
> Federal Perkins Loan Program is not just the federal government's
> contribution, but also the potential loss of the one-third match
> required by school participants.  This match stretches federal dollars
> and contributes to the fiscal health of the program.
>
> WHAT ARE ARE ADVANTAGES OF FEDERAL PERKINS LOANS OVER OTHER LOANS?
>
> The Federal Perkins Loan Program was established by Congress to promote
> access to post-secondary education for low income borrowers by providing
> low interest loans with favorable terms (current rate is 5%).  Also,
> deferments and forbearance can be granted to borrowers with documented
> hardship.  The loans carry a number of cancellation previsions such as
> for public service through VISTA, the Peace Corps and for teaching in
> teacher shortage areas.  The Federal Direct Student Loan Program and the
> Federal Family Education Loan Program do not offer students any of these
> benefits.  The fact that the Federal Perkins Loan Program is campus
> -based is also an advantage for students.  The local administration of
> funds allows schools to tailor the program to best fit borrowers needs
> and to insure efficient operation.
>
> *** SAMPLE LETTER ***
>
> Dear Member of Congress:
>
> The Federal Perkins Loan Program, formerly the National Defense Student
> Loan Program, was first authorized by the Congress in 1958 and is the
> oldest federally supported student aid program.  Over 2,700
> participating higher education institutions offer low interest Perkins
> loans to eligible students.  These funds are supplemented each year by
> repaid loans and federal funds that are matched by institutional dollars
> (3 to 1).  It is this critical capital contribution that we are asking
> you to preserve.
>
> Collectively, we represent thousands of students who attend higher
> education institutions.  As participants in the Federal Perkins Loan
> Program, we know firsthand the importance of Perkins loans to low-income
> students.  The $158 million appropriated by the Congress in Fiscal Years
> 1994, 1995 and 1997 for the Perkins program leveraged $900 million each
> year in loan capital for student borrowers.  In addition, in FY 1998,
> Congress increased allocations for the Federal Perkins Loan Program's
> loan cancellation fired, an indication of increased support for loan
> forgiveness for students who serve their communities.
>
> The Federal Perkins Loan Program fosters access to postsecondary
> education for low-income borrowers by providing low interest loans (five
> percent annually) with favorable terms during a period of declining
> grant availability.  Approximately 83 percent of undergraduate Federal
> Perkins borrowers are from families with incomes of $30,000 or below.
> Approximately 25 percent of these borrowers are from families with
> incomes of $18,000 or below.
>
> Of particular importance are the loan cancellation provisions contained
> in the Federal Perkins Loan Program, that apply to nurses, teachers and
> other low-income service employees, who choose to work in disadvantaged
> areas.  The benefits to these areas would be lost with the elimination
> of the Perkins program.
>
> The Federal Perkins Loan Program has made over $13 billion in education
> loans to eligible borrowers.  This is a program that has stood the test
> of time.  It enjoys the support of all participating institutions and
> its I I percent national cohort default rate indicates satisfaction
> among its primary beneficiaries -- student borrowers.
>
> At a time when access to education is increasingly important and costs
> continue to escalate, we urge you to sustain critical federal support
> for, campus-based student loans and the Federal Perkins Loan Program.
>
> Thank you for your interest and attention to our request.
>
> Sincerely,
>
> ***  WHAT YOU CAN DO ***
>
> Call people you know in the administration (Department of Education,
> Office of Management and Budget, White House)
>
> Call a member of Congress, congressional staffer or committee staffer
> you know.
>
> Prepare a grassroots message for your members to use when they call the
> administration.
>
> Organize a letter-writing campaign to the administration.
>
> Prepare op-eds for placement in local papers
>
> The Message
>
> Perkins loans have a unique role in student aid.  The additional
> resources they provide cannot be subsumed under other programs.
>
> The additional $3,000 available through Perkins Loans gives campus
> financial aid administrators the flexibility they need to meet the
> special needs of low-income students, by providing less expensive loans
> or supplementing federal loans for students whose borrowing needs are
> greater than the limits set by the Stafford Loan Program.
>
> Support all student aid programs, including Perkins Loans.
> From: NASPA Office <[log in to unmask]>
>
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