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The Monthly Memo Archive

The Monthly Memo

September 1, 2000

Dear Colleagues,

Please visit our web page. The site address is heab.state.wi.us.

Points of Interest:

  1. In prior notification lists some (not all) independent students were being rejected in analysis due to missing household size. This was caused by a programming change that was made to bring in household size rather than exemption numbers (which was used in the past) used to award the TIP Grant and for other purposes. This has been corrected and we are now bringing in all of the necessary household sizes. The good news is that it appears now, based on the award commit percentage, that we may not need to adjust the UW WHEG and/or the WTC WHEG formula/s to allow for more spending in 2000-01. It is still somewhat difficult to compare and predict since the formula models have changed substantially this year. We will continue to closely look at the award commit percentage and vouchering for 2000-01. Again, if you have any questions or comments in regards to this issue, please feel free to contact me or members of your system's workgroup. Thank you for your patience.

  2. Attached is a final draft of the 1999-2000 WISSIS Data Form. Please contact us if you are not able to open the document and we will fax a copy to you. A preliminary version of this form was sent to you in the May, 2000 Monthly Memo. The revisions were made based on meetings with representatives from the UW, Technical College and Independent College sectors.

    Changes include:

    • The school information section has been moved to the beginning of the form. A request for fax and e-mail information has been added.

    • Text has been added at various points in the form to better explain the information that is being requested. For example, after 2(a) there is a note that explains that the number of students broken down by class must equal the total number of dependent and independent students.

    • Definitions of certain terms have been added to help schools better understand what data to include.

    • Under 2(d) schools are told that if they are unable to differentiate the need and non-need based components for awards in excess of financial need, the awards should be placed under need-based aid.

    Please take a moment to review this form. If you have any changes, please contact Jim Buske by phone at (608) 267-9865 or by e-mail at james.buske@heab.state.wi.us. Please make any suggested changes by September 20, 2000. We would like to send the forms out by the end of September. Thank you.

  3. Please be aware that it is not necessary for schools to submit an award amount via file maintenance. This information is not used. Including this information consumes resources both at HEAB and at your school. Awards are calculated prior to each voucher and re-calculations are triggered by changes to any of the five key fields (dependency status, year in school, marital status, household size and EFC).

Points Related to Processing:


  1. 2000-01 notification lists and associated reports are scheduled to print 9/5/00 and 9/18/00.

  2. We will continue to run the 2000-01 vouchering process on Tuesday and Friday nights of each week. Just a reminder that we cannot guarantee that your request can be loaded on the same day it has been received if the information arrives after 12NOON. Please keep in mind that it takes two to three business days after the vouchering process runs before checks are physically printed. So please plan accordingly. Please only voucher funds for students who are registered for coursework. Contact me if you have any questions.

  3. 2000-01 award commit for WHEG and WTG is as follows:

      UW WHEG Award Commit = 97.23% (last year at this time it was 90.78%)
      UW WHEG Spent = 13.16% (last year at this time it was 11.60%)
      WTC WHEG Award Commit = 108.65% (last year at this time it was 103.20%)
      WTC WHEG Spent = 15.91% (last year at this time it was 17.23%)
      WTG Award Commit = 119.73% (last year at this time it was 104.06%)
      WTG Award Spent = 23.02% (last year at this time it was 22.06%)

  4. Please remember to submit TIP nomination forms to Sandy Dercole.

Other Points:

  1. Here are a few tips for bringing in your electronic Notification Files:

    1. set all margins to 0.25"
    2. set paper orientation to landscape
    3. set font to Courier (or Lucida Console if you have it)
    4. set point size to 9

  2. If you encounter problems opening the file directly from email, try saving it to your server or hard drive using either Notepad or WordPad to open it. If this doesn't work, please give Barb Moermond a call at (608) 266-3091 and she will work with you to try to find a solution.

  3. If your school transfers data to HEAB via an FTP site, please notify Barb Moermond at barbara.moermond@heab.state.wi.us as soon as possible whenever any changes in your FTP set-up, software, IP, etc. occur. Once notified, Barb will make all the necessary changes that need to be made at our end in order for HEAB to continue to be able to transfer data to and from your school.

  4. To all schools using the HEAB templates for file maintenance and voucher requests: Please refer to the Information for Financial Aid Administrators section on the HEAB web page (http://HEAB.state.wi.us) where you will find the formatting guides for both templates. Please use the guides and verify that both templates are formatted exactly the way the guides indicate. There have been an increasing number of problems with files not being formatted properly when they had been fine previously and this means that the file maintenance changes and/or voucher requests that have been submitted aren't going through. Please contact Barb Moermond (barbara.moermond@HEAB.state.wi.us) if you have any questions.

  5. Please note that when sending file maintenance, all "adds" must be sent as "adds" and all "changes" must be sent as "changes." Therefore, please remember to code students who do not appear on your notification list (these are students being added to your school) as "EA" and to code students who do appear on your list (you are making changes to their records) as "EC". Think of these codes as Edit Add and Edit Change. If the information is not sent under the correct code, the change or add may be rejected.

  6. There have been a number of schools who have been sending file maintenance for students who are not enrolled at their school. Therefore, new awards keep recalculating based on file maintenance sent in by the school where the student is not attending. The school where the student is attending has to keep sending file maintenance to correct what the other school has sent. To eliminate this problem, please only send file maintenance for students who you know are attending or plan to attend your school.

  7. When you send file maintenance, which includes contribution changes, you must always include the SC and PC along with the new EFC for dependent students. This is important for maintaining our internal student system particularly when working with the TIP grant.

  8. For schools whose students receive WTG funding: If you have students with "special tuitions," please identify those students with their special tuition WTG code each time file maintenance is submitted for them.

  9. If your school receives the electronic report file of the notification list, please note that a 1 or a 2 in the child support column means that the student is delinquent (1 or 2 = DELQ).

  10. Please be aware that if you request a disbursement of less than $250 for a term or a semester or if the student has used nine semesters of eligibility, the voucher request is manually handled through a "special voucher" which is run on Wednesday nights.

  11. Also be aware that you cannot voucher funds for a student you just sent FAFSA changes for to the federal processor. Please voucher funds for students after they are reflected on the notification list. Our agency will calculate an award the Tuesday or Friday night after file maintenance is received or after the student is loaded from the federal record (which we draw down daily). However, the notification list which communicates the student award to you is run every other Tuesday. Please keep all of this in mind when you are making student record changes or vouchering funds. Please also keep in mind that we calculate awards on the most recent information that is received either through file maintenance or from the federal processor.

  12. Just another reminder that students can receive up to ten semesters of a combination of WHEG/WTG rather than ten semesters of each.

  13. Recently there has been an increase in the number of errors in the processing of refunds. The errors fall into two categories:

    1. Schools returning more money for a student than was originally vouchered.
    2. Schools sending in duplicate refunds.

    Please take a moment before sending in refunds to check and make sure that:

    1. You are returning the proper amount.
    2. You have identified the proper program.
    3. That the same refund has not been sent to us previously.

  14. The next two training sessions are:

      September 21, 2000
      November 16, 2000

    The program begins at 10:00 a.m. and ends no later than 3:00 p.m. It is held at the HEAB offices at 131 W. Wilson St, Suite 902, Madison, WI. We have room for up to 6 people at each session.

    If you want to register for a session or need more information, please call Jim Buske at (608) 267-9865 or send email to james.buske@heab.state.wi.us.

I appreciate your feedback and thoughts! My phone number is 608.264.6181, FAX: 608.267.2808, EMAIL: jane.hojan-clark@heab.state.wi.us and SNAILMAIL: HEAB, P.O. Box 7885, Madison, WI 53707-7885.


Jane Hojan-Clark, Executive Secretary
Wisconsin Higher Educational Aids Board


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