NEWS

CMU joins cost transparency initiative

National program aims to publish exact cost of an education

| Author: Eric Baerren | Media Contact: Aaron Mills

Central Michigan University has joined a national initiative of higher education associations and universities to promote transparency around the cost of higher education.

The College Cost Transparency Initiative aims to provide accurate, clear information about the true cost of a college education and eligibility for financial aid. It also calls on member institutions to explain financial aid offers in plain, clear language and to use whatever technology best serves their student populations.

“Central Michigan University is committed to simplifying the financial aid process for our prospective and current students,” said Sarah Kasabian-Larson, CMU’s director of scholarships & financial aid. “By providing clear, transparent offer notifications that outline the breakdown of offered aid, estimated expenses, and glossary of terms, we believe that students will be better equipped to make informed decisions.

“Taking a step toward this promise, CMU has signed the College Cost Transparency Initiative and works to ensure the financial aid process is simplified and clear.”

Member institutions must provide prospective and current students with an estimate of their total cost of attendance and details about financial aid packages offered, including which portions are free money and which need to be repaid, as well as information on student work opportunities.

CMU joins more than 500 schools across the United States in the initiative, including Michigan’s 14 other public universities.

Kasabian discussed another piece of the financial aid puzzle undergoing a transformation on a recent episode of The Search Bar podcast.

The United States Department of Education announced earlier this year that it is simplifying the Free Application for Federal Student Aid form. Among other changes, the new form will draw information from a filer’s income tax return.