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CASFAA - Dialogue 2006

Canadian Association of Financial Aid Administrators
Annual Conference
Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, BC Canada

June 11 - 13, 2006

Detailed schedule

schedule in brief

Saturday, June 10, 2006
Harbour Centre

1:00 – 5:00 CASFAA Board Meeting Room 2050 (Alan & Margaret Eyre Boardroom), Harbour Centre

Sunday, June 11, 2006
all sessions at Harbour Centre

10:00 AM Registration Desk Open Main concourse, SFU Harbour Centre
1:00 – 5:00 Pre-Conference Workshop

Managing the Difficult Conversation
Deborah White and Associates

Many of us have to have conversations in the workplace that we find awkward or difficult.  In our work environments we are often faced with having to give people unfavourable news. This leaves us having to deal with emotional and angry individuals. This workshop assists you to deal successfully with the most difficult conversations you face.

Learning Objectives: 

By the end of this one day session, you will learn:

  • how to prepare for a difficult conversation;
  • how to be clear on your purpose for the conversation and clear on your message;
  • how to manage the emotional content of the difficult conversation;
  • how to skillfully approach situations such as: saying no,
  • what "to do" in those difficult conversations and what "to avoid".


Deborah White, B.S.W., M.A. (Applied Behavioural Science)

Deborah is an organization/management consultant, mediator and trainer whose successful practice focuses on managing change, organizational analysis and feedback processes, future planning, as well as resolving conflicts and re-constructing working relationships, building teams, facilitating groups, coaching managers and employees and developing collaborative negotiation and problem-solving skills. Deborah also conducts workplace assessments/investigations including harassment cases. In addition to having a private consulting practice, she is a senior trainer for the Justice Institute of British Columbia's Conflict Resolution Certificate Program which is an internationally recognized alternative dispute resolution training program.

Deborah's expertise has taken her into both public and private sector venues.  Clients have included Imperial Oil, Sask Power, B.C.Transit, B.C. Hydro, University of B.C., B.C. Labour Relations Board, Metro McNair Group of Companies, Northern Telecom, Canada Post, Canadian, B.C. and Yukon Territorial Governments.  She has also worked with several unions such as the C.E.I.U., P.S.A.C. and the I.W.A. as well as a number of health care organizations, school boards, and municipalities. She has 20 years of experience in the human relations field and focuses on assisting groups to build agreements that clarify interpersonal relationships as well as solidify future directions.

Deborah has excellent skills in organizational development work and in mediating/conciliating and specialized in the following areas: process consulting, executive coaching, workplace mediation, organizational and multi-party facilitation and assisting with respectful workplace initiatives. 

Deborah teaches a variety of topics and focuses particularly on the following skills courses:

  • Managing the Difficult Conversation
  • Giving and Receiving Feedback Constructively
  • Dealing with Conflict in the Workplace
  • Managing Employee Disputes
  • Mediating Harassment and Grievance Situations
  • Negotiation skills
  • Negotiating in a Labour Context
  • Bargaining with an Interest-based Model
  • Mediation skills
  • Facilitation skills
  • Leadership and Teambuilding skills
  • Managing Change and Transition
  • Managing Performance Reviews
Room 1700 (Labatt Hall), Harbour Centre

Breakout sessions in Rooms 1500, 1505, 1510

5:30 – 6:30 Opening Reception

Innovation and Trade show open

Room 1400/1430
(Segal Rooms), Harbour Centre
6:30 – 7:30 Session 1:
An Introduction to Dialogue with a surprise guest speaker
7:30 – 8:30 Mingle time

Innovation and Trade show open

Room 1400/1430
(Segal Rooms)


Monday, June 12, 2006
Wosk Centre for Dialogue and Harbour Centre

10:00 AM Registration Desk Open Main concourse, SFU Harbour Centre
Breakfast on your own  
8:30 – 10:00 Session 2: Dialogue Session

Cross-country update by representatives of Provincial and Federal government student assistance programs.

This session is extremely valuable in informing the participants of significant accomplishments or changes in the administration and program design of financial aid programs in Canada. In addition to a brief presentation by representatives of each of the federal and provincial student aid programs, the audience and the presenters will be given the opportunity to participate in a facilitated discussion of key issues and opportunities to support post-secondary students in Canada. This session lays the foundation for the dialogue session held in the afternoon.

Moderator: Tony Norrad, Dean of Admissions and Financial Aid, Concordia University College. Panelists: Noel Baldwin, Projects Officer, Research and program development, Canada Millennium Scholarship; Joseph Berger, Policy and Research Officer, Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation; Ann-Marie Julien, I/Director - Program Delivery, Canada Student Loans Program; Sean Junor, Manager, Knowledge Mobilization, Educational Policy Institute; Provincial Government Representatives: Thomas Wall, Manager, Operations, Student Services Branch, Ministry of Advanced Education; Janice Park, Director of Learner Services, Alberta Advanced Education

Asia Pacific Hall, Wosk Centre
10:00 – 10:30 Refreshment Break

Innovation and Trade show open

Room 1400/1430
(Segal Rooms), Harbour Centre
10:30 – 11:45 Session 3: Keynote by Paul Huschilt

Seven Humour Habits for Workplace Wellness

Under the guise of a 'low-budget spa', this motivational keynote tackles the effects of stress by teaching low-budget interventions for wellness. People will leave feeling inspired to take the steps they need to be their best at work. The audience enjoys an eclectic mix of comedy, song, and experiential activities customized just for them. The result is a return to the workplace with renewed pride in what they do, enthusiasm and team spirit.

  • Paul has been to grade 1 twice, but he has never been to grade 2. (At the age of 7, Paul moved to Switzerland (with his parents) where he repeated grade 1. The Swiss were so clever that back in Canada, he skipped grade 2.) Although he believes in life-long learning Paul is no longer in grade school .If he were, he would be in grade 37. Paul’s speaking and seminar work has taken him across the United States and Canada, as well as to the Netherlands, France, and Japan.
  • Paul is an award winning speaker and storyteller.
  • The Canadian Association of Professional Speakers has asked Paul to present his closing conference weaving summary for 3 national conventions in a row.
  • Paul sang in the Canadian Opera Company chorus in 1997 and 1998.
  • Paul presents in French, English and Japanese. He plans to learn a new language every 5 years until he reaches grade 57.
  • Paul holds a Master of Arts Management Degree, a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree, a Diploma in Career Counselling, and a Certificate in Adult Education - all of which he earned himself! (These he earned at Carnegie Mellon University, The University of Windsor, George Brown College, and St. Francis Xavier University respectively.)
  • At 24, Paul drove Debbie Reynolds to dinner when he was the Assistant Company Manager for the Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera Company.
  • Since becoming a professional member of the Canadian Association of Professional Speakers, Paul has not missed a convention.
Room 1900 (Fletcher Challenge Theatre), Harbour Centre
11:45 – 1:00 Lunch

Innovation and Trade show open

Room 1400/1430
(Segal Rooms), Harbour Centre
1:00 – 2:30 Session 4: Dialogue Session

This interactive session will address key areas of interest to Financial Aid Officers as well as to important stakeholders in the student aid community. The session will include brief presentations by representatives of The Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation, Canada Student Loan Program, Educational Policy Institute to stimulate dialogue and discussion. Registered delegates will also have the opportunity to formulate questions to be posed to our invited guests and to the audience. Topics may include (but are not limited to):

  • What is the optimal mix of loans, grants, and institutional aid to students? 
  • What role should parents and families play supporting students in post-secondary education? 
  • How can government financial aid programs and financial aid officers work together to assure program access and minimize student default.

Moderator: Tony Norrad, Dean of Admissions and Financial Aid, Concordia University College. Panelists: Noel Baldwin and Joseph Berger, Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation; Ann-Marie Julien, I/Director - Program Delivery, Canada Student Loans Program; Sean Junor, Educational Policy Institute

Asia Pacific Hall, Wosk Centre
2:30 – 3:00 Refreshment Break

Innovation and Trade show open

Room 1400/1430
(Segal Rooms), Harbour Centre
3:00 – 4:00 Session 5: CASFAA AGM Asia Pacific Hall, Wosk Centre
Vendor Sessions
4:00 – 4:30 6A: International Education Finance Corporation (IEFC)
IEFC  is the premier provider of international student loan programs for the rapidly growing population of students who wish to study in foreign countries.
Room 2270 (Sauder Industries Policy Room), Harbour Centre
4:00 – 4:30 6B: New E-Commerce Solutions, EDULINX         

We’re Listening…

You’ve asked for improved efficiencies in your offices. You’ve asked for significantly reduced outstanding receivables. You’ve asked for increased use of the web. You’ve asked for greater flexibility and more options for your students. You’ve asked for increased conveniences for both your students and staff. Nelnet Business Solutions (NBS) is committed to helping make educational dreams possible for your students and reduce the workload for your staff. We provide integrated solutions for your business operations including campus commerce, actively managed tuition payment plans, college planning, enrollment management, and student financial services. We give you customized integrated solutions with online payment processing and payment plans through bank accounts, credit/debit cards, and invoice processing. Our design provides flexibility for students and families while maintaining control for your institution. NBS works with major student information systems including PeopleSoft, Banner, Colleague, Jenzabar and others.

Room 7000 (Earl and Jennie Lohn Floor Policy Room), Harbour Centre
7:00 – 11:00
Conference Banquet
Bus pickup time will be 6:30pm from the Wosk Centre. Buses will leave at regular intervals from the Aquarium to return to the Wosk Centre starting at 9:30pm.


Tuesday, June 13, 2006
all sessions at Harbour Centre
Breakfast on your own  
 9:15 – 10:30 Session 7  
7A:  Dealing with the Challenges of Student Debt
Scott Hannah, Executive Director, Credit Counselling Society

Opportunities in the job market for students with post-secondary degrees continue to grow all across Canada. Despite our strong Canadian economy and the increase in job opportunities, student debt and financial difficulties continue to challenge students both during and after their period of study.

Scott will share his views on consumer debt, emerging consumer debt trends and issues, as well as how government, post-secondary institutions and community partners can work together to address these issues.

Room 1315 (Bank of Nova Scotia Lecture Room), Harbour Centre
7B: A Satirical Look at the Government Student Loan Processes and Procedures from a Recipient's Vantage Point
Shelley Clayton and Renea Sleep, University of New Brunswick

This session will provide you with a humouristic perspective of students' understanding and comprehension of many government student loan processes and procedures.  You will learn nothing, but, you will have fun doing it!

The thrust of this session is to add some levity into the Canada Student Loan Program and provide positive solutions for change to improve communication to students.  This session will provide a series of sketches detailing students loan from point of application through to repayment.

Room 1425 (Repap Policy Room), Harbour Centre
7C: CSLP - Helping Students out of Default
Ann-Marie Julien, I/Director - Program Delivery, Canada Student Loans Program

This session will provide an overview of the repayment process and the default management tools used by the service providers. The session will also highlight the services offered to borrowers.

Room 7000 (Earl & Jennie Lohn Floor Policy Room), Harbour Centre
10:30 – 11:00 Refreshment Break Room 1400/1430
(Segal Rooms), Harbour Centre
11:00 – 12:15 Session 8  
8A: Scholarships as a Strategy for Recruitment and Retention
Linda Conrad, University of British Columbia

All institutions aim to attract and retain the best and brightest students to their institution. This session will talk about strategies in putting together a scholarship package to attract and retain the best and brightest students.

Room 7000 (Earl & Jennie Lohn Floor Policy Room), Harbour Centre
8B: What is a Hybrid Award?
Rella Ng, University of British Columbia

More and more schools seem to be creating awards that look at both academic merit and financial need.  These are called hybrid awards.  This session will look at the rewards and challenges of creating and administering these awards.

Some of the challenges would be: creating a selection committee that can assess both academic merit and financial need; the day to day administration of the award and tracking financial costs; growing the award and offering it to more students each year.

Room 1315 (Bank of Nova Scotia Lecture Room), Harbour Centre
8C: Vision and Financial Aid: Creating dialogue, discovering purpose
Lisa Buckley, Simon Fraser University

A shared vision for financial aid programs is essential for defining goals and values. You will learn a collaborative approach to discovering vision, and dialoguing with staff and students.

This session will:

  • Introduce a proven model for creating a lasting vision for a department or program
  • Articulate why having a shared and clearly communicated vision is particularly important for Student Service programs, especially Financial Aid. Benefits include:
    1. a shared vision becomes a compass for making strategic decisions
    2. creates a common understanding and focus of our department/programs—why we do what we do
    3. the voices of staff, students and other stakeholders are recognized in the vision process and in future programming
    4. empowers participants (builds understanding of what is within our control)
    5. cornerstone of good governance, particularly in the service sector
  • Give participants the tools they need to implement a visioning process in their department and to open a real dialogue around values and purpose with stakeholders, including students.
  • Provide resources to help participants align their vision with their program structure, and thereby achieve lasting results.
  • Discuss how having a vision for a program opens up opportunities to dialogue with students about their goals, especially as it relates to planning and budgeting in a way that is consistent with their values.

Presentation will include:

  • visual presentation with handouts (Power Point)
  • in-session exercises
  • tools for participants to take back to their departments and implement, including a resource list
Room 1425 (Repap Policy Room), Harbour Centre
Session 8D: Success among students benefiting from loan and bursary programs
Daniel Simpson, Ministry of Education, Leisure, and Sport, Quebec

The session will discuss a study of new post secondary students in two different groups to measure the impact of a loan and bursary program on student perseverance and academic success. [This session will be in French]

Room 2200 (RBC Dominion Executive Room), Harbour Centre
12:15 – 1:30 Lunch Room 1400/1430
(Segal Rooms), Harbour Centre
1:30 – 2:45 Session 9: Keynote
Understanding the Language of Money

Speaker: Karen Gross, Professor of Law at New York Law School  

curriculum vitae
Leadership Exchange article (pdf)

For more than two decades, Karen Gross has been a Professor of Law at New York Law School where she specializes in consumer finance and over-indebtedness.  In addition, she is the President and CEO of an educational non-profit organization that designs, implements and studies programs to improve the financial literacy skills of consumers.  She serves as a consultant to non-profit organizations, including United Way NYC, the Council on Legal Educational Opportunity and the Campaign for Working Families. She sits on several boards, including the Foundation Board of the Open Door Family Medical Centers, a primary health care facility. Raised in New England, she is a cum laude graduate of Smith College where she was elected to Phi Beta Kappa and a cum laude graduate of Temple University School of Law, having spent her final year of law school at the University of Chicago.  Prior to entering legal academia, Professor Gross taught at the high school and college levels and practiced law in Chicago and New York. 

Professor Gross has earned a national and international reputation as a scholar, teacher, administrator and community leader dedicated to improving the lives of those less privileged.  Her legal scholarly work has been published in leading journals including the University of Pennsylvania Law Review, Michigan Law Review, and Notre Dame Law Review. Her most recent works on financial literacy education and student indebtedness have appeared in Behavioral Sciences and the Law, Journal of Student Affairs, Financial Counseling and Planning Journal and Leadership Exchange. Her prize-winning book, Failure and Forgiveness, was published by Yale University Press.  She has also written pieces published in the popular press, including the LA Times, Chicago Tribune, University Business and the Chronicle of Higher Education. She writes a semi-monthly column called Money $ense for the Westchester and Fairfield County Business Journals.  She is currently co-authoring a new book titled: Translating the Language of Money: A Guide to Unspoken but Powerful Messages.

Professor Gross speaks frequently in the U.S. and abroad.  She is also regularly invited to speak on television and radio and is frequently quoted in the print media.  She has served as an outside tenure and grant reviewer in the US and Canada.  She has testified before local and federal governmental bodies, including most recently the New York City Council and the Federal Financial Literacy and Education Commission.  She is the recipient of numerous awards and grants including the 1999 Legal Aid Society Pro Bono Award, the 2002 New York State Bar Association’s President’s Pro Bono Service Award, the 2004 AAUW Education Foundation Senior Scholars Special Commendation of Honor and the Westchester Community College 2006 Women’s History Month Honoree. 

Room 1400/1430
(Segal Rooms), Harbour Centre
2:45 – 3:15 Refreshment Break Room 1400/1430
(Segal Rooms), Harbour Centre
3:15 – 4:30  Session 10  
Session 10A: The Millennium Access Grants: A review and vision for moving forward
Noel Baldwin, Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation

A review of the first year implementation of the Millennium Access Grants: Profile of recipients.  Lessons learned.  Challenges and solutions.

In 2005 the Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation launched an ambitious project designed to deliver grants to students under-represented in post-secondary education in Canada. The 2005-06 academic year marked the successful launch of these grants in nine jurisdictions. The grants themselves are also part of an innovative research project to test their ability to assist these students.

The implementation wasn't without challenges. This presentation will review data on who received the grants and they will lay the groundwork for a dialogue with CASFAA members about what we learned about delivery of the grants and plans for 2006-07.

Room 7000 (Earl & Jennie Lohn Floor Policy Room), Harbour Centre
Session 10B: How to Survive a Systems Implementation
Rummana Khan Hemani and Heather Rhodes, Simon Fraser University

In 2004 Simon Fraser University launched their new PeopleSoft student information system, including a robust Financial Aid module. Session highlights include an on-line demonstration of key features, change management and lessons learned, and future goals, as the University embarks on a major upgrade of the system.

Room 1425 (Repap Policy Room), Harbour Centre
Session 10C: Institutional Strategies to Improve Government Student Loan Repayment
Jennifer Orum, BC Institute of Technology

Student and institutional factors related to loan defaults will be discussed, plus strategies used at Canadian post-secondary institutions that directly or indirectly impact repayment behavior.

Given the growing emphasis on default prevention, particularly within the context of the pan-Canadian Designation Policy Framework approved by the Council of Ministers of Education in April 2003, all partners in the student loan process are paying increased attention to loan repayment rates. Research into student loan defaults over the past decade has suggested that successful completion of a student's post-secondary program may have a more direct relationship to loan repayment behavior than other factors such as the student's background or the type of institution they've attended. 'Student success', both in terms of completing a credential and obtaining employment with sufficient income following graduation, are being seen as key variables in limiting defaults on government student loans. A research project funded by the Student Services Branch of the BC Ministry of Advanced Education looked at strategies and practices being used at colleges, universities and institutes which have the direct or indirect effect of increasing loan repayment rates of their students. Examples of strategies and practices from institutions across Canada will be provided.

Room 1315 (Bank of Nova Scotia Lecture Room), Harbour Centre
Session 10D: A follow-up conversation with Karen Gross

Karen Gross, Professor of Law, New York Law School

Room 2200 (RBC Dominion Executive Room), Harbour Centre
4:30 – 5:30 CASFAA 2007 Reception, hosted by University of Saskatchewan Room 1400/1430
(Segal Rooms), Harbour Centre


site updated 8 June 2006

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