Fire the Scripps Financial Aid Office.

Jan 16, 2008 • Karen

No one who needs financial aid should attend Scripps College until everyone in the current financial aid office is fired. They are the most disorganized, incompetent administrators I have ever had the displeasure of working with. That also seems to be the assessment of most other non-first-years with financial aid whom I've talked to about the issue.

In order to pay for my senior year education, I took out two private loans--a $4000 loan and a $15,000 loan, both from Wells Fargo. However, when the bills came from Scripps they had no record of the first loan, the first half of which was disbursed on September 20. Because Scripps bills are formatted confusingly and don't list your loans separately (my merit scholarships and loans are all thrown together as "expected loans and aid," which seems to be a semi-arbitrary number), I didn't realize this until the beginning of winter break, when I received a bill for $2000 from Scripps--even though I knew I'd taken out enough loans and paid enough money to cover the entire year.

So I called financial aid. They were closed. (Mid-morning, Friday before the weekend before Christmas.)

I called again. They were closed. (Thursday, early afternoon, two days after Christmas.)

Finally people actually came to work on January 3 and I talked to Rhonda about it. She said there was no record of the first loan, but then as we talked said that she saw something suggesting that someone in the office--a temp maybe?--did certify the loan--they just never received the money. She said she'd have to do more research and talk to Wells Fargo.

Yesterday my parents received a second bill from Scripps, now with late fees attached. So I call Rhonda again. She had zero memory of our previous conversation and her commitment to figure out what was going on. She insisted that there was no record of Scripps certifying or receiving the first payment (on September 20) of the $4000. "Are you sure it wasn't just a $4000 loan that was increased to $15,000?" Yes. I'm paying interest on them. "Do you have any evidence that we certified this loan?" Well, I can't go through your files for you, bitch, but yes, I have my loan account record right in front of me (thank you Wells Fargo for sending me a copy when this originally came up!). Wells Fargo says you certified it. Wells Fargo says it sent you the money. This matter should be between you and Wells Fargo now--I did my part. Either you or Wells Fargo screwed up, and it was probably you. So stop treating me as if *I'm* shaking down *Scripps*!

"If it's true that we made a mistake, then we'll ask Accounts to take off the late fees." Well, good. Problem is, I have to prove it to *you,* and it's your office's incompetence that's at issue. Who do you go to when you need to go over the head of the financial aid office?

At the end of the call she said she'd have "Her" (some other employee... ?) look into it first thing in the morning. Well, given the results of Rhonda's "research" after my previous call, I'm not sure what to make of that. My current plan is to call the financial aid office every day until they credit me the $2000 loan disbursement and/or I feel confident that they're actually doing their fucking job instead of sitting around playing Bejeweled and masturbating.

I mean, really. These people lost a loan and then for two weeks forgot to do anything about it. What do they spend their time doing?