The Business and Art of Financial Aid

In this three-week course, you will learn tactical best practices related to the financial aid process, as well as how to enhance the strategic partnership between the business and admissions offices to ensure long-term success. Anyone involved in aid allocation decisions — business officers, controllers, admissions professionals, financial aid committee members and heads of school — will benefit.

Strong collaboration is vital to the strategic preparation, tactical processing, and effective reporting of financial aid awards. Participants will be empowered with the knowledge and tools to address the challenges that come with setting financial aid budgets and communicating awards and learn day-to-day best practices for decision making. Participants will also learn how to ensure consistency in execution and reporting of the financial aid process.

In addition to learning from a variety of curated resources, including videos, articles, recorded webinars, case studies and discussion boards, you will establish a national learning community of peers with whom you can continue to explore the concepts discussed in the course. Topics covered include preparing seasonal financial aid data and budget numbers, organizing, and processing applications, managing difficult conversations and the appeals process, and developing a consistent message.

This course is being offered in partnership with Mission Enrollment and One Schoolhouse.

Course Schedule

Week 1

Preparing for the Financial Aid Season

Explore the considerations and steps to setting your school up for success before the start of financial aid season. Learn about the importance of understanding all areas of financial assistance at your institution and its impact on mission, budget, and interdepartmental communication. Supporting materials for this week include a recording of the NBOA webinar Understanding Tuition Discounting: A Key to Financial Sustainability featuring Mark J. Mitchell, Vice President National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) and NBOA’s very own Elizabeth Dabney, Director, Research and Data Analysis, and James Palmieri, Ed.D., Executive Vice President.

Week 2

The Financial Aid Process

Study the detailed process of reviewing financial aid applications. Learn important policies and checklists to ensure proper review of applications as well as a deep dive on how to review tax documents from business owners.

Week 3

The Aftermath

Learn about the importance of establishing and controlling financial aid appeals and how to analyze and communicate the results of the entire financial aid process. Explore key partnerships for engagement throughout the financial aid season.


SHRM Information

Credit Hours: 6

Category: Business Acumen

NBOA is recognized by SHRM to offer SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP professional development credits (PDCs). For more information about certification or recertification, please visit


HRCI Information

Credit Hours: 6

Category: HR (Business)

NBOA is a recognized provider of recertification credits. HR Certification Institute® pre-approved this program for credits towards aPHR™, PHR®, PHRca®, SPHR®, GPHR®, PHRi™ and SPHRi™ recertification.


Email or call 202-407-7140


Jan 17 - Feb 4, 2022


Cancellation and refund policies




Group discount available

Time Commitment

3-5 hours per week for 3 weeks

Learn more about the platform and coursework

Class Size

Up to 35 participants

Recommended Audience

  • Business officers
  • Heads of school
  • Admissions and enrollment professionals
  • Financial aid committee members