Gratz College

Melrose Park, PA

Objective: A small private transdenominational Jewish college located in Melrose Park, PA, Gratz College came to AACRAO Consulting with the goal of improving its financial aid processes and strategy to better leverage financial aid as a recruitment and tuition benchmarking tool.

Challenge: The distribution of staff responsibilities across several departments was impacting the College’s financial aid process efficiencies. Staff members were tasked with duties beyond their core competencies, making it difficult to receive adequate training and stay informed of emerging financial aid processes and tools that could improve the College’s outcomes.

Solution: AACRAO Consulting thoroughly assessed the institution’s financial aid processes, including the department’s organizational structure, staffing levels and deployment of responsibilities.

Based on our findings, we recommended transitioning financial aid duties from the business office to enrollment management, which was already overseeing the school’s scholarships. This strategic move significantly improved the timing and efficiency of financial aid packaging. We additionally recommended that the college hire a financial aid professional with specific expertise in the field and knowledge of emerging trends.

Results: The improvements in processes and staff structure have allowed the business office to remain focused on its core responsibilities, while enabling the financial aid office to better meet student needs and enhance its student services. AACRAO Consulting worked with staff across both departments to embrace and enact the changes required to implement these improvements. It has been a year since the consultation and the college quickly experienced increased revenues over projected budgeted amounts, as a result of implementing the suggestions provided by AACRAO Consulting.