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SWASFAA Presents FSA Webinars

  • October 18, 2023
  • 10:00 AM - 12:30 PM
  • SWASFAA Zoom

Registration is closed

SWASFAA is pleased to present two Student Financial Aid webinars from the Department of Education. 

1. FAA's Role in FAFSA Simplification

2. Top Ten Compliance Findings

Attendees will be able to submit questions to SWASFAA. These will be compiled for the Department of Education to answer after the webinar. SWASFAA will then send these questions out to membership. 

FSA Training Specialists

Sara Vancil

Training Specialist, FSA Training and Information Services Group

Sara Vancil serves as a Training Specialist with Federal Student Aid and is based in Lawrence, Kansas. She has a passion for developing and delivering engaging and effective training with a particular focus on building online training courses for the FSA Training Center at fsatraining.ed.gov. Sara has a special interest in helping financial aid administrators find and utilize the wide range of resources available on the Knowledge Center Home and the FSA Training Center to become as adept and effective as possible at Title IV aid administration.

Prior to her time with the Department, Sara spent twenty years working in institutions of higher education including Stanford University, Boston College, Princeton University, and the University of Kansas. She worked in various student services positions in admissions, career services, and financial aid. Her most recent role was as a Financial Aid Administrator at the University of Kansas, spending 13 years coordinating the University’s financial aid awarding processes, including financial aid packaging, scholarships, and cost of attendance development.

During her time as a Financial Aid Administrator, Sara was active in leadership roles both in KASFAA and RMASFAA, including serving as KASFAA President and spending five years as faculty for RMASFAA’s Summer Institute, a week-long boot camp for financial aid adminstrators of all levels.

Sara has a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Kansas and a master’s degree in Higher Education Administration from Boston College.

Effie Barnett

Training Specialist, FSA Training and Information Services Group 

Effie Barnett began her career at DeVry University - Chicago in 1984, where she advanced to Director of Financial Aid. Effie then worked at the U.S. Department of Education (ED) in 1990 and 1991 as an Institutional Review Specialist in Chicago, and Alternate Training Officer for the Chicago and Atlanta regional offices. She left ED to work at Northwestern University, and was the Director of Financial Aid - Chicago for twelve years of those sixteen years.

After realizing that her heart belonged to public service, Effie returned to Federal Student Aid (FSA) in 2008 as an Institutional Review Specialist. She became an Institutional Improvement Specialist (IIS) in 2010 and remained in that position until becoming a Training Specialist in Spring 2020. Effie has processed eligibility and method of payment actions, resolved deficient compliance audits, conducted program reviews and new school visits, and developed and delivered training to school officials and FSA staff.

As a Training Officer, Effie presents at Fundamentals of Federal Student Aid Administration workshops, FSA webinars, and conferences, develops training materials, and provides technical assistance via AskAFed. Effie has presented the Top 10 Compliance Findings session at the FSA Training Conference and is a presenter at the Applying for Recertification webinars.

Effie has a Bachelor of Music degree from the Sherwood Conservatory of Music, a Master of Project Management degree from the Keller Graduate School of Management at DeVry University, and a Master of Business Administration from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.

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