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WV State University to host roundtable on student financial aid

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With the cost of college education going up, it seems as though more students in West Virginia and the nation are looking toward financial aid to help them achieve their goals.

And next week, the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Federal Student Aid will come to West Virginia State University for a roundtable discussion on student financial aid and the challenges of providing financial aid to students in West Virginia.

According to a news release from WVSU, participants in the roundtable are expected to include U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va.; U.S. Rep. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va.; Marshall University President Stephen Kopp; West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission Chancellor Paul Hill; high school administrators; school counselors and representatives of nonprofit organizations.

Registration for the roundtable begins at 10 a.m. in the Wilson University Union. Manchin and Capito will give introductory remarks at 10:30 a.m.

Maisha Challenger and Fred Stennis, both of whom work with the Office of Federal Student Aid, will provide an overview of financial aid tools and resources available through their office as part of the Roundtable.

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, in the 2010–11 academic year, the average annual price for undergraduate tuition, fees, room and board was $13,564 at public institutions (including $5,076 for in-state tuition) and $32,026 at private, not-for-profit and for-profit institutions. The NCES also said that nearly 66 percent of American college students received some sort of financial aid in 2007-08, which is the most recent year available.

Following the presentations, roundtable participants will engage in discussions with an emphasis on developing next steps toward increasing awareness of and access to financial aid in the state.

The roundtable will conclude at 12:30 p.m.