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30 Years of FAS!  Commemorating the Past…Celebrating the Moment…Looking to the Future
  
Financial Aid Services founded in Atlanta, GA

In 1991, David and Gay Gray founded Financial Aid Services (FAS). The first office space was their dining room table. Their son, Matt, was less than a year old. He and FAS have grown up alongside each other. Way back then, the Grays could not have imagined that Matt or FAS would be the stature they are today. Matt now stands 6’5 and FAS has over 1,800 clients under its belt!

Building on David’s reputation in the financial aid community and among his colleagues, several colleges in Georgia—Mercer University, Emory University and GA Tech, were FAS’ inaugural clients. It was in only a few short years that the business grew and led to the addition of a corporate office, full-time and part-time staff, and clients from around the country lining up to tap the services provided by FAS.

First On-Site Staffing Project

 It was in 1994 that David, himself, performed FAS’ first Interim Staffing engagement.  A University in North Carolina needed temporary leadership while it searched for a permanent director of financial aid.  David took on that assignment, living in the University’s Alumni House.  He shared those quarters with consultants from another company who were working on another project. 

 
 
  
ED Acknowledges FAS' Exceptional Performance

In FAS’ first decade, its high caliber staff, quality work and strong sense of integrity caught the attention of staff at the U.S. Department of Education (ED).  ED officials are limited in their ability to endorse outside organizations.  However, FAS has earned an exceptional performance acknowledgement from ED for its work with colleges and universities operating under Heightened Cash Management (HCM). 

 
 
 
FAS and ED Collaborate

In 2005, FAS and ED answered the call to help colleges and universities in Louisiana recover from the devastation of Hurricane Katrina.  Never had such a project been undertaken.  The work FAS and ED did together to assist the colleges and students formulated the Disaster Recovery Plans ED still uses for weather-related and other nationally declared emergencies.

 

FAS and Partners Bring Processing Into Digital Age

In 2012, FAS was asked to help the North Carolina Community College System (NCCCS) streamline financial aid operations across its 52 campuses statewide.  A pilot project, chartered by FAS, significantly reduced administrative burdens on the campus financial aid staff.  At a time when the State’s budgets were declining, NCCCS saw enrollment increase while retention and completion rates reached an all-time high.  FAS’ strategic relationship with NCCCS is ongoing. The colleges that comprise NCCCS frequently call on FAS for needs related to administering student financial aid. 

 

FAS Launches a New Division

2018 was a pinnacle year for FAS.  It brought, not only a substantial growth in core business, but also the launch of Student Business Services (SBS).  SBS is a division dedicated to serving the needs of college and university business offices.  For years, clients had asked FAS if comparable services were available to help student accounts and bursar’s offices.  David and Gay assembled an advisory group of trusted colleagues, who were recognized leaders in this area. A little over three years later, a team of SBS consultants now provide Interim Staffing, Consulting and Assessment services to business offices throughout the country.  

 
 
FAS and COVID-19

In every way, 2020 was a year like no other.  The higher education community was turned upside down by the COVID-19 National Emergency.  However, FAS and SBS staff were steadfast in their commitment to support clients and serve students.  In step with individual campus plans, FAS seamlessly pivoted all onsite engagements to remote in less than two days.  FAS’ Compliance and Policy Team worked tirelessly to share regulatory relief and funding updates with clients and the community.  FAS was the first organization to provide a webinar-based training on the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) reporting. 

 

FAS Celebrates 30 Years

We begin our 30th year proudly sharing the milestones of serving over 1,800 clients, performing over 2,100 engagements and processing over 2 million student files.  Higher education looks much different than it did in 1991 but FAS’ core values of quality work, integrity and mutual respect still define who we are and what we do!

 






Their professionalism is impeccable – it’s the finest we’ve seen. The folks they have – from their leadership to the people who come out on site – are as knowledgeable as you are going to find. When dealing with consultants, I’ve never seen that level of interest, sincerity and commitment. Every single person they sent brought that level of commitment to us."

- Dr. John McCloskey | Associate Vice President for Enrollment Management | Alvernia College