By Kassidy Scheppler
No more waiting for the checks to come in the mail. Beginning this January, students will receive Rogue Debit Cards for quick and easy access to their Financial Aid money.
Rogue Community College has partnered with Higher One program for fast and easy student refunds. According to a press release, RCC is the fifth college in the state of Oregon to partner with Higher One.
This new partnership with Higher One will make the process of receiving aid more efficient, according to an RCC press release. All students who receive Financial Aid will be automatically signed up for this service.
Once this service begins, traditional paper checks will no longer be mailed. This electronic upgrade will help meet the growing need for students to receive their financial support swiftly and painlessly.
“We are excited about our new partnership with Higher One,” said Lisa Stanton, Rogue Community College Director of Budget and Finance.
While the service itself is mandatory, students will have the ability to spend the money wherever needed, hassle-free.
According to the press release, students will have the option to transfer the funds to their private bank accounts, make cash withdrawals of up to $500 at a time, or deposit the money in Higher One’s optional, free, and fully-insured checking account called OneAccount.
Tech-savvy students can sign up for text-message notifications when they receive refunds, and OneAccount holders can check their balances via cell-phone.
The card – like any other card – does have a fee for using your pin to make a debit purchase. And like other cards, this fee can be avoided if you “swipe and sign.”
Higher One was chosen after RCC solicited bids from companies that could run their fund management services.
“Higher One was selected based upon their positive reputation and what they do compared to other vendors we researched. For example, Higher One does not issue credit cards to students, sell student information, or offer any types of lines of credit or loans,” Stanton said.
According to Stanton, late and lost checks are common, and the mere presence of a paper check introduces opportunities for fraud.
In an email to all students on RCC’s mailing list, Stanton announced the new, electronic financial aid system. She also asked that students update their mailing addresses on the “MyRogue” section of RCC’s website as soon as possible.
“Easy Refund is the fastest and easiest way to gain access to your refund money,” Stanton said. “Please activate your card as soon as you receive it.”
Some students believe this is a wonderful idea.
“I think this is a great program,” RCC student Sandra Crandall said. “I wont have to cash the checks and I can keep my school money separate from my home money.”