INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND
Although not required by the Department of Education to have a default prevention plan in place, the Financial Aid Office at Ohlone College makes significant efforts in the areas of default prevention and debt management. This document, a part of Ohlone College's Financial Aid Policies and Procedures, describes these efforts and presents information about the institution's loan program that helps guide these efforts. The Financial Aid Office is responsible for implementation of this plan.
OHLONE COLLEGE STUDENT LOAN BORROWER POPULATION
To understand the default prevention and debt management efforts for loan borrowers, it is helpful to see Ohlone College's borrowing population in the context of the institution. Ohlone College serves almost 12,000 students annually and processes over 70 loan applications per academic year. In the Fall 2017 term, Ohlone College had 8,436 enrolled students, 58% of which were part-time. For the 2017-2018 academic year, Ohlone College awarded 5.9 million dollars in grant aid to 53% of the student body, and only 1% of these students took out student loans in addition to grant aid.
OHLONE COLLEGE'S HISTORICAL DEFAULT RATES
Ohlone College's default rates, over time, have fluctuated widely – primarily due to the small size of the cohort – two or three additional borrowers who default in a particular cohort can have a size able impact on the resulting cohort rate.
|DOE COHORT YEAR||DOE CDR||# IN REPAYMENT||# IN DEFAULT|
Ohlone College's 2017 Draft Rate (released in February of 2020) is: 4% (3/74), and the school's trial three-year rates (from NSLDS trial rate reports) are: 2014 3-year trial is 14.1%; 2015 3-year trial is 10.5%; and 2016 3-year trial is 5.1%.
The table below show Public 2-year Associate Degree granting schools with similar sized cohorts (+/- 10 borrowers) and their 2007, 2006, and 2005 rates. These institutions provide benchmarks for Ohlone College, and show that similar institutions with same size cohorts also experience wide fluctuations in rates over time.
|School Code||School Name||State||07 N||07 D||07 Rate||06 N||06 D||06 Rate||05 N||05 D||05 Rate|
|007738||Southern Arkansas University Tech||AR||17||107||15.8||17||128||13.2||15||123||12.1|
|001102||Ouachita Technical College||AR||12||107||11.2||11||71||15.4||5||69||7.2|
|001224||Los Angeles Harbor College||CA||5||107||4.6||5||87||5.7||6||87||6.8|
|013536||Coastline Community College||CA||6||109||5.5||10||123||8.1||11||121||9|
|001485||Florida Keys Community College||FL||21||110||19||16||126||12.6||12||122||9.8|
|009231||Washington County Comm Coll||ME||13||110||11.8||9||59||15.2||9||122||7.3|
|008038||Middlesex Community College||CT||18||111||16.52||12||91||13.1||2||41||4.8|
|001913||Dodge City Community College||KS||18||112||16||21||155||13.5||9||130||6.9|
|001191||Diablo Valley College||CA||6||114||5.2||10||139||7.1||17||156||10.8|
|010390||Windward Community College||HI||11||114||9.6||21||133||15.7||15||153||9.8|
|001104||Phillips Comm Coll of the U of AR||AR||10||115||8.6||15||152||9.8||15||99||16.1|
|005258||Hawaii Community College||HI||24||117||20.5||18||140||12.8||12||143||8.3|
|014311||Berkeley City College||CA||19||118||16.1||12||112||10.7||9||105||8.5|
|006982||Naugatuck Valley Community College||CT||13||119||10.9||5||139||3.5||7||119||5.8|
|004453||El Centro College||TX||10||121||8.2||16||137||11.6||13||123||10.5|
|003816||Southern WV Comm and Tech College||WV||22||121||18.1||21||115||18.2||6||66||9|
|001643||Spoon River College||IL||18||124||14.5||28||146||19.1||12||112||10.7|
|008597||Feather River College||CA||11||125||8.8||21||125||16.8||16||91||17.5|
|006981||Gateway Community College||CT||13||126||10.3||7||149||4.6||10||123||8.1|
|034835||Cascadia Community College||WA||6||126||4.7||10||143||6.9||8||142||5.6|
|009765||Three Rivers Community College||CT||8||127||6.2||16||138||11.5||9||122||7.3|
|001669||Danville Area Community College||IL||19||127||14.9||23||121||19||11||108||10.1|
|037894||River Parishes Community College||LA||16||127||12.5||5||70||7.1|
ORGANIZATION OF DEBT MANAGEMENT ACTIVITIES
This document is organized using Ohlone College’s “Life of the Loan” approach, and describes the default prevention and debt management efforts of the Financial aid Office at each stage of the borrower’s loan:
- Pre-enrollment Activities
- At initial enrollment/application for financial aid
- Upon re-borrowing for 2nd year
- Upon withdrawal or graduation
- Upon entering repayment
- During repayment/cohort management
The Ohlone College Financial Aid web site provides information pertaining to student loans. This site includes links to the Department of Education’s Direct Lending program as well as the GRAD Ready Financial Literacy Modules. Financial Aid Counselors conduct workshops on campus, at local high schools and for faculty/staff. They also present the Financial Aid Overview at all mandatory new student orientation programs. All of these sessions and workshops include information on borrowing and repayment.
AT INITIAL ENROLLMENT/APPLICATION FOR FINANCIAL AID
The loan section of the Financial Aid Office web site expresses the philosophy of careful consideration before borrowing and emphasizes the potential hazards of over borrowing. The packaging philosophy focuses on grant and gift aid—loans are not part of a student’s award notification. All students who qualify for a loan receive a letter from the Financial Aid Office informing them that the loan application has been processed and what their total loan indebtedness is. First-time borrowers must complete Two (2) Financial Literacy Modules prior to loan certification. After a student’s loan is disbursed, a notification is sent to the student informing them that they have the option of reducing or canceling a portion or the entire loan.
UPON RE-BORROWING FOR 2ND YEAR
The Financial Aid Office has required that second-year borrowers still complete entrance counseling to remind them of their borrowing obligations and their increasing debt. In addition, the completion of Three (3) additional Financial Literacy Modules is required prior to loan certification. Financial Aid Workshops on scholarships, student employment and life skills management are offered monthly.
UPON GRADUATION OR WITHDRAWAL
The Ohlone College Registrar’s Office sends a report to the Financial Aid Office of students who have applied for graduation. The Financial Aid Office contacts these students to notify them of the exit counseling requirement, and online as well as in-person exit counseling are offered. Students who do not complete the required exit counseling have a hold placed on their student account which prevents them from receiving their diploma or any Ohlone College services until the exit requirements have been satisfied.
Students who withdraw from Ohlone College are sent an exit packet which directs them to studentloans.gov to complete their exit counseling.
UPON ENTERING REPAYMENT
Ohlone College has uses in house reporting to track Borrowers going into repayment to ensure that payments are made on time or that the necessary forms have been completed so that students have made necessary repayment options. Notification is sent out to students as they near the end of their 6 month grace period and entering repayment. We work to connect the Borrower to their loan services if assistance is needed to have them enrolled into a payment plan that works best for them.
DURING REPAYMENT/COHORT MANAGEMENT
Throughout repayment, Ohlone College uses in house tracking reports to send delinquency, deferment, and forbearance letters and emails to borrowers. This tool has been used for several years. This communication generally generates telephone conversation with the borrowers, and Thao Nguyen is the primary owner of the activities managing this communication. Borrower detail reports are monitored.
MEASURING THE EFFECTIVENESS OF OHLONE COLLEGE'S PLAN
Each year, Ohlone College will evaluate its financial aid packaging policies, taking into account institutional as well as student needs. The focus of this review will be to encourage conservative borrowing by students and to promote scholarships, other gift aid, and federal work/study in lieu of loans, and will tie into the institutional effectiveness plan. The Financial Aid Officer will examine on an ongoing basis this default management plan to assess its effectiveness. As part of this assessment, the Financial Aid team will work closely with the California Community College system, evaluate plans used by other institutions, review useful Web sites, and attend default prevention conferences and workshops to ensure that Ohlone College delivers the most effective programs and services to its students.