Understanding that the primary goal of institutional financial aid professionals is to help students achieve their educational potential by providing appropriate financial resources to this end, Missouri State University adopts this Code of Conduct to assist its students to make knowledgeable choices regarding the financing of their education.
The University shall require and ensure that no officer, Board member, director, employee or agent of the University accepts anything of more than nominal value on his or her own behalf or on behalf of another from or on behalf of a Lending Institution (other than an institution of higher education or governmental entity such as the U.S. Department of Education), except that this provision shall not be construed to prohibit any officer, Board member, director, employee, or agent of the University from conducting (a) non-University business with any Lending Institution; or (b) University business unrelated to educational loans. As used in the preceding sentence and throughout the Agreement, a Lending Institution is defined as:
Nothing in this provision shall prevent the University from holding membership in any nonprofit professional association.
The prohibition set forth in the previous paragraph shall include, but not be limited to, a ban on any payment or reimbursement by a Lending Institution to a University employee for lodging, meals, or travel to conferences or training seminars unless such payment or reimbursement is related solely to non-University business or University business unrelated to education loans.
The University shall prohibit any officer, Board member, employee, or agent of the University from receiving any remuneration for serving as a member or participant of an advisory board of a Lending Institution, or receiving any reimbursement of expenses for so serving, provided that participation on advisory boards that are unrelated in any way to higher education loans shall not be prohibited by the Agreement. Understanding that such service by persons affiliated with the University can be of value to the institution and the community, such service is not prohibited, nor is receipt of reimbursement for expenses or participation in activities of the Lending Institution, as long as there is abstention from any votes and board meeting discussion regarding higher education loan programs, and activities on behalf of the Lending Institution are limited to non-University business and University business unrelated to educational loans.
The University may not accept on its own behalf anything of value from any Lending Institution in exchange for any advantage or consideration provided to the Lending Institution related to its education loan activity. This prohibition shall include, but not be limited to, (i) "revenue sharing" by a Lending Institution with the University, (ii) the University’s receipt from any Lending Institution of any computer hardware for which the University pays below-market prices and (iii) printing costs or services. Notwithstanding anything else in this paragraph, the University may accept assistance as contemplated in 34 CFR 682.200(b) (definition of "Lender")(5)(i), and may enter into contracts with Lending Institution primarily involving activities unrelated loan activity. Receipt of gifts from Lending Institutions unrelated to education loan activity is not prohibited.
In the event that the School promulgates a list of preferred or recommended lenders or similar ranking or designation ("Preferred Lender List") then
The University will ensure that no employee or other agent of a Lending Institution is ever identified to students or prospective students of the University or their parents as an employee or agent of the University. No employee or other agent of a Lending Institution may staff the University Office of Student Financial Services at any time.
The University has not and will not link or otherwise direct potential borrowers to any electronic Master Promissory Notes or other loan agreements that do not allow students to enter the lender code or name for any lender offering the relevant loan, unless the University provides an additional link to provide information to students regarding the process for borrowing with institutions not on the Preferred Lender List. Understanding that lenders are identified on the Preferred Lender List on the basis of their superior service and other benefits to students, the University will not be considered in violation of this Code of Conduct if the student fails to meet published guidelines for payment of fees and a standard response is implemented.
If the school participates in the "School as Lender" program under 20 U.S.C. § 1085(d)(1)(E), the School may not treat School as Lender loans any differently than if the loans originated directly from another lender; all sections of the AVC apply equally to such School as Lender loans as if the loans were provided by another lender.
As used herein, "override pool," "opportunity funds," and "opportunity loans" refer to any agreement, understanding or practice in which a lender applies more lenient loan underwriting criteria than it otherwise would to a certain class of loan applicants if the school meets certain milestones or metrics with respect to other loans with that lender, such as the number of loans initiated or in force, or the dollar amount of such loans, or where the lender agrees with your school to lend money to students outside the Federal Family Education Loan Program (FFELP), at the direction of your school, in exchange for your school dropping out of the federal direct loan program and/or marketing the lender’s separate FFELP loans to students.
The School shall not arrange with a Lending Institution to participate in any override pools, opportunity funds, opportunity loans, as defined above, if the participation in such program(s) prejudices any other borrower.