Private Student Loan Processing Expertise
Financial aid people are good people – and Amy Gerber is one of them. The ScholarNet team is excited to see Amy bring her private loan processing expertise and relationships with lenders and schools to the group.
With 24 years of experience, the newest ScholarNet rep, Amy is no stranger to financial aid, private loan processing, ScholarNet – or even the members of the ScholarNet team. In fact, the fit couldn’t be more natural for Amy to join the group. You may already know her, but we’ll share a recent conversation we had with her.
How did you start your career working in financial aid?
I had an associate degree in accounting, and a job opened up at my school’s financial aid office. When I then took a position at a four-year private school in my home state of Ohio, I completed my BSBM and MBA before I took an Associate Director position at American University and we moved to DC.
That’s such a typical story for people working in financial aid, don’t you think?
Yes! There’s no degree for [financial aid]. Once I was in financial aid, I enjoyed working at the college level, working with students and other staff members – I learned so much at American University. The 1-1/2 hour commute (one way) was so hard. I left 14 years ago to work for Great Lakes until I worked with financial literacy for Ascendium last year.
How familiar are you with ScholarNet, CDS, and FastChoice? What do you like best about it?
13 years familiar. I used ScholarNet in the early days and sent files back and forth via FTP with Great Lakes. I really like that the product itself just works. It streamlines the student loan disbursement process and makes life easier for the whole financial aid office. But the people make it really unique and special. We have fantastic customer service and we really get to know the school and their loan processing, and what will work best for them – that’s one of our strong suits.
What most excited you about coming to work with your colleagues at ScholarNet?
They’re such a great group of people, and some of my best work friends. It’s a tight-knit group. We help each other out, have each other’s back, and do what’s best for ScholarNet as a whole.
What’s the biggest challenge with working in financial aid?
There’s always one more thing for the financial aid office to do, always something being added to their plate, whether it’s financial aid regulations or processes. That’s why I enjoy working with private loan processing because with ScholarNet, I’m providing them with something that saves them time and makes their life easier.
What are defining characteristics you’ve found among people who work in financial aid?
They’re caring people. They want to do what’s best for students. And they’re willing to share their private loan processes and knowledge, and what they’ve created with another office that needs it. They’ll work for months on something, and then just share what they’ve done with someone else because it will help them.
What’s your experience in lending?
Again, I’ve got 13 years – plus when I worked in the financial aid office. I really enjoy building relationships with lender partners. I recently saw many lender partners at a regional financial aid conference during my first week back with the ScholarNet team, and the lenders I saw were excited to be working with me again. It’s mutual.
What do lenders like most about ScholarNet?
Working with our people. They like how responsive our reps are to them, and our willingness to reach back out to schools to take care of the lenders’ interests.
How do your talents off the job help you on the job?
I’m a type A personality. I keep things organized and structured, and that’s how I keep track of everything on a daily basis. Mom is Command Central wherever I am, keeping the schedule of our family and two children, ages 17 and 9.
What advice are you giving your older daughter about higher education?
She doesn’t know what she wants to do yet. I’ve told her that it’s okay not to know that yet. For her, she knows she’s not ready to go away to a four-year college, so she’s thinking about staying near home and going to a local state college while she gets a better idea of what she might want to do, and that’s just fine with me.
Where is home for you now?
Melbourne, Florida. I love it, and I don’t take the weather for granted one bit. We’re both from Ohio.