After our previous message, some industry colleagues informed us that they had thought they had been doing individualized awarding, but upon our inspection, they were merely receiving individual awards.
Confused? Let us explain.
Even if your partner for financial aid leveraging returns an award for each student, that doesn't mean your financial aid is individualized or efficient. You may just be receiving an award for each student based on a rudimentary grid. Other offerings on the market provide only a two-factor grid, where the award is a percentage of unmet need for students in a particular cell — but your students are more dynamic than that.
In our recent post about the tiers of awarding, we noted that optimizing financial aid involves awarding each student according to a model with a foundation set to maximize each student’s probabilistic contribution to net revenue, rather than chunking student profiles into awarding groups.
The latter leads to over-awarding or under-awarding, which limits your potential for generating desired enrollment numbers, student profile characteristics, and net total revenue. When awarding with a grid, as many of our clients do, it's beneficial to begin with a foundation in an individualized model. We provide this level of service for all our grid-level clients.
It never hurts to ask your partner these questions:
- Am I receiving truly individualized aid amounts based on a unique formula, or an award for each student that simply sums his qualifying awards?
- Is the value-add in the awarding efficiency to drive yield and net total revenue, or just in the firm's automation of the awarding of my grid? Am I truly getting both?
- Can my individualized awarding or awarding grid discern the statistically significant differences of two very similar students?