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July 26, 2012 Volume 33, No. 35

New financial aid director wants to help make higher education affordable

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Nick Prewett


MU office gives out $350 million annually in financial aid, the director says

One of the challenges MU’s financial aid office faces, in the wake of declining state appropriations, is continuing the university’s mission of access and affordability for current and future students.

“The chancellor wants to promote access for students who have financial need, so it is a matter of balancing the priorities of our financial aid policy to make sure we can provide that access,” said Nick Prewett, who became MU’s director of financial aid in May.

Prewett joined MU in 2010 as associate director of financial aid. He served as interim director after James Brooks resigned last summer.

“Nick has done an excellent job as the interim director, and we anticipate he will continue to do so in the director position,” said Ann Korschgen, vice provost for enrollment management. “We are very fortunate that he is a member of our Enrollment Management leadership team.”

The office’s staff of 39 prepares financial aid packages that include grants, scholarships, loans and awards from federal, state, third-party and institutional sources. “Our office processes about $350 million a year worth of financial aid for more than 27,000 students,” Prewett said.

As director, Prewett wants his office to continue to provide a “friendly face to students and to make sure we provide accurate information to them based on their financial aid options. Communication with students plays an important role in helping students persist and attend the university,” he said.

Before coming to MU, Prewett was assistant director of financial aid since 2004 at the University of Kansas, where he had earned a master’s degree in political science. He will receive a doctorate in higher education administration from the University of Kansas in May 2013.

Prewett was honored last year with the Outstanding Service award from the Kansas Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators and the Committee of the Year award from the National Association of Financial Aid Administrators. 

MU’s financial aid office will continue to provide accurate information and financial aid options to students, Prewett said.

“I love the interaction with students, and I love the campus and overall environment,” he said. 

“It is a good place to be as a student and an administrator.”