Non-Federal Resource Specialist

Western Governors University
January 8, 2021
Atlanta, GA
Job Type


Posting Close Date 1/20/2021

Position Summary:

A Non-Federal Resource (NFR) Specialist is a professional contributor position requiring federal, state, and any other non-federal financial aid, such as private loans, knowledge and skills. A qualified individual is responsible for answering all incoming emails and all telephone calls that are directed to the NFR department. A qualified individual will have excellent follow-up and customer service abilities. This position requires that the employee acts as a liaison on behalf of the student with state grant departments as well as other departments within WGU.  This position will ensure compliance with the Department of Education regulations. A qualified individual will be able to thoroughly research student accounts and understand all aspects of financial aid regulations. They will assist the internal call center with non-federal financial aid inquiries, prepare student awards for processing, ensure that funds are applied properly, and perform reconciliation duties. They will also help the student understand all aspects of accepting state grants and other non-federal aid, in order to maintain all scheduled disbursements of awarded funds.

 Essential Functions and Responsibilities:

  • Answering student emails and phone calls
    • Thoroughly research accounts in Banner, SalesForce, Department of Education database, numerous state grant databases, and various non-federal aid databases, including private loan websites.
    • Communicate to the student the requirements needed to process the various non-federal aid types including private loans, state grants and/or scholarships, and be able to explain why those items are required.
    • Ensure that the student has the information necessary to complete the requirement.
    • Establish a follow-up process to make sure the student submits the requirements and that the student’s financial aid is processed and applied to the student account for the correct term and accurate amount.
    • Make sure the student understands the obligations associated with any funding that they receive.
    • Research and understand how the federal financial aid regulations apply to WGU.
    • Review student accounts to ensure all awarded funds are applied to the accounts; have a working knowledge of academic years, award years, and SAP.
    • Display proficiency in cross-functional coordination by acting as a liaison on behalf of the student with state grant and other non-federal offices and departments and other departments within WGU.
    • Help advise other departments within WGU in regards to non-federal grant policy, disbursements and requirements.
    • Provide excellent customer service for students and fellow employees.
  • Student issues
    • Listen to students processing inquiries and help to resolve any issues.
    • Maintain confidentiality based on FERPA and Department of Education requirements.
    • Research student concerns relevant to non-federal grant disbursement and potential excess funds.
    • Immediate follow up and follow through, to make sure the student understands and  the issue has been resolved. 
    • Assist internal call center with student issues in regards to non-federal aid and state grants.
    • Find solutions for processing issues to improve our service to help students.
    • Work closely as a team with other WGU departments to process non-federal and state grant aid. 
    • Communicate to manage ongoing issues with other internal WGU Departments as needed.                         
  • Processing and awarding
    • Research, understand, and perform the process for determing eligibility for grants and non-federal aid and requesting funds.
    • Research, understand, and apply WGU’s University policies in general and financial aid policies and procedures specifically, and understand the impact to state grant and non-federal aid eligibility.
    • Prepare the packaging request  or directly package the student in Banner.
    • Help the student understand the process and how any non-federal resources or grants will affect their financial aid eligibity.
    • Perform data analysis of varying complexity when reviewing and interpreting NSLDS student loan data when necessary.
    • Review student awards to make sure they are not over-awarded by receiving non-federal aid or state grants.
    • Prepare the revision request or directly revise the student in Banner.
    • Log all awards in a shared tracking file and note actions taken in Banner.
    • Notify students of awards and any additional requirements or changes to their award.
    • In cases of non-disbursement, determine why this has occurred and how to resolve it.
    • Takes initiative to Work with the Bursar department to perform reconciliation as necessary.
  • Researching and learning the federal and state regulations.
    • Utilize the Department of Education database, state, and other non-federal aid databases to research regulations and new rules.This will include researching new grants to determine eligibility requirements and processing procedures.
    • Contributes to the team’s functional objectives by assisting in establishing new processes based on the regulations.
    • Be able to communicate new processes to others as well as record them on paper.
    • Work closely with other departments on student issues and following up with all entities.
    • Collaborate with management to determine and create procedures outside of standard processing guidelines.
    • Pass on information to other departments and individuals within WGU where needed.
  • Database and processes.
    • Banner- notating every account and updating as necessary.
    • SalesForce- responding to all emails and creating and closing cases.
    • NSLDS- reviewing loan history.
    • IFAP- researching the federal regulations.
    • Scholar Track, VSAC, WSAC, WSOS, TSAC, OH HEI, MO FAMOUS, etc. – administering state-based financial aid awards.
    • Exercises independent judgment within standard processes and displays ability to determine if new processes need to be created in Banner and to communicate those needs to the responsible department.
    • Detailed records must be kept of all awards via shared spreadsheets and databases.
    • Communicate with Bursar department to establish awarding codes and procedures.

Knowledge, Skill and Abilities:


  • Strong knowledge of financial aid
  • Attention to detail
  • Analytical thinking
  • Team work in all areas
  • Customer service oriented
  • Well organized
  • Attentive to detail
  • Strong interpersonal and organization skills
  • Team player
  • Ability to assist and support others
  • Adapt well to change
  • Willingness to travel to attend out of state training conferences and represent WGU

  • Strong knowledge of financial aid
  • Attention to detail
  • Analytical thinking
  • Team work in all areas
  • Customer service oriented
  • Well organized
  • Attentive to detail
  • Strong interpersonal and organization skills
  • Team player
  • Ability to assist and support others
  • Adapt well to change
  • Willingness to travel to attend out of state training conferences and represent WGU


Minimum Qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s degree preferred
  • 1 year of federal Title IV aid programs required
  • Knowledge of Federal Title IV regulations and WGU Financial Aid policies 
  • Knowledge of Banner, SalesForce, OnBase, and DOE websites
  • Knowledge of Microsoft Office 2010 and Windows OS

Preferred Qualifications:

Working Conditions

Disclaimer: This Job Description has been designed to indicate the general nature, essential duties, and responsibilities of work performed by employees within this classification. It does not contain a comprehensive inventory of all duties, responsibilities, and qualifications that are required of the employee to do this job.  Duties, responsibilities and activities may change at any time with or without notice. This Job Description does not constitute a contract of employment and the University may exercise its employment-at-will rights at any time.

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