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Understanding Your Financial Aid Program Kicks off Money Matters: PLAN▪SAVE▪GROW

Martha Davis Vignes, Title III Activities Director

Financial Aid MagazineThe Title III: Pirate PATH to Success financial literacy campaign, Money Matters: PLAN ▪ SAVE▪GROW,  kicked off Thursday, August 26, 2021, at Noon – with an enlightening workshop:  Understanding Your Financial Aid – presented by Pensacola State College (PSC) Financial Aid Director, Joanne Rozborski.

A seasoned veteran in supporting students, Director Rozborski walked 21 student attendees through a well-prepared, friendly review of how to apply for and maintain financial aid – while attending PSC. A Question and Answer period followed the presentation and students were treated  to box lunches on behalf of a generous donation by PSC Community Partner,  Members First Credit Union.

The Title III: Pirate PATH to Success grant serves First-Time-in-College (FTIC) students and other at-risk student populations, such as First-Generation-In-College (FGIC), low-income, and military veterans [sic] and families (PATH, 2019). Utilizing a pro-active or intentional advising approach, advisors in four disciplines, Business & Baccalaureate, Health, STEM, and Workforce Programs, connect with assigned students at a holistic level with a focus on retention and helping students complete degree or certificate programs on time.

This advising style includes support for other challenges students may face while attending PSC – which often includes financial difficulties. According to a recent report: the PSC Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System’s Financial Aid Component Overview, “[m]ore than 80 percent of all first-time, full-time PSC students received some type of financial aid – grants and scholarships, including federal, state, local and institutional awards,” Retrieved from https://www.pensacolastate.edu/its-a-financial-aid-frenzy-at-pensacola-state-college/ (2021).

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The Title III: Financial Literacy campaign offers programs to help train students in financial management skills and provides subject matter experts who address such topics as Understanding Your Financial Aid, Budgeting, Credit, Loan Repayment, and Grocery Shopping on a Budget. Advisors provide campus and community referrals to assist students with crisis intervention and follow up as needed to keep students on track for completing their programs of study.

Understanding Your Financial Aid is often the first step in helping students gain a firm foundation and is presented by Director Rozborski  who started at PSC in 2015 and holds her M.A. in Higher Education and Postsecondary Education from Argosy University.

Elected in 2021 for Region 1 Representative to the Florida Association of Student Financial Aid Administration (FASFAA), Rozborski is held in high esteem by her peers who designated her for the leadership role. She also holds membership in The Southern and National Associations of Student Financial Aid Administrators and received NASFAA Certification in Administrative Capability and Cash Management.

Joanne-RozboraskiDirector Rozborski said her experience in the discipline includes serving “in Financial Aid for over 15 years at colleges in Long Beach, California, and Las Vegas, Nevada. In 2014, my husband, a Senior Intel Officer in the Air Force, was transferred to Florida. I started at Pensacola State College as a District Coordinator in 2015, then [was] promoted to the Financial Aid Director. The nature of the [PSC] Financial Aid Department allows me to serve students alongside an AMAZING team of professionals. I look forward to seeing the continued growth of this department” (2021).

Additional Financial Aid staff, Alonda Jones, Associate Coordinator and Yari Deliz-Trento, Coordinator, Scholarships also attended and responded to questions from the audience.

Indeed,  the PSC Financial Aid department, under Rozborski’ s professional leadership, takes a  proactive approach by helping students and parents navigate the details in applying for and maintaining Financial Aid. The Financial Aid department’s webpage on the pensacolastate.edu website, provides support: from tutorial videos and links for available funding options, i.e. grants, loans, scholarships, Veteran’s benefits, and work-study programs to information on how to understand Verification – an auditing step that requires data documentation from the students applying for financial aid. Retrieved from: https://www.pensacolastate.edu/financial-aid/

Additionally, the Financial Aid knowledgeable staff is available M-F from 7:30am-4:00pm by phone, 850.484.1680, or in person by visiting Building 2B. For directions, a  campus map is featured on the webpage for those new to the campus.

Money Matters: PLAN▪SAVE▪GROW  is a program of Title III: Pirate PATH to Success, funded through a federal grant with the U.S. Department of Education Title III Programs – Strengthening Institutions.