Professional Development > Conferences and Workshops

Conferences and Workshops
(Click here for the 2019-2020 Professional Development Series PDF)


Thinking Strategically about Financial Aid & Parent Entitlement
Aaron Wachholz

Thursday, September 27, 2012
9:30 am - 3:00 pm

Hotel Indigo
Chicago, IL

Aaron will present NAIS data which shows that financial aid budgets grew significantly, in response to the Great Recession, largely because more higher-income families were becoming eligible for small grants. Many of those "newly needy" families may have demonstrated need for assistance due to temporary setbacks due to layoffs, job change, or reduced  salary or other income. Have these families become accustomed to receiving aid in the past year or two and express a sense of entitlement to it, even when they no longer qualify? How can you counsel these families about their eligibility without jeopardizing their willingness to re-enroll with less financial aid, or none at all? 

In the afternoon, Aaron will present on strategic financial aid. Even before the Great Recession of 2008, schools were feeling pressures from families through growing demand for financial aid. With the economic downturn and its lingering effects, the landscape for managing financial aid programs effectively has shifted considerably. These shifts have made schools more affordable for some families but less accessible to others. This session will provide an overview of some of the key drivers contributing to the changing financial aid landscape and how they impact your school's need to be more strategic in all aspects of how your financial aid investment can help meet your mission while serving families in an equitable, balanced, and sustainable way.
There will be time built into the day for sharing and Q&A. 

Aaron Wachholz is the  Regional Director – Midwest & Mid-Atlantic for the National Association of Independent Schools and School and Student Services By NAIS (SSS By NAIS).  Aaron spent the first six years of his career as a teacher in private schools in various roles including middle school history, K-8 physical education, and coaching. He then transitioned into different administrative roles for two years including Athletic Director and Principal. After a professional shift, Aaron worked as a financial advisor for two and a half years serving clients in comprehensive financial planning. For the past four years, he has worked as one of four Regional Directors for NAIS and SSS By NAIS. In his current role he assists NAIS member schools with the resources provided to them by NAIS, works with all schools in his region who use SSS By NAIS for their financial aid management system, and reaches out to new schools who may find value in utilizing the services offered through SSS By NAIS.  

The workshop will take place at the Hotel Indigo, 1244 N. Dearborn, Chicago, IL. The Hotel Indigo is located in the Gold Coast neighborhood with easy access to shops, dining and public transportation.

Hotel Indigo offers valet parking for overnight guests. Pull up to the hotel entrance and valet the car. Bring the valet ticket to the hotel's front desk and the hotel will add the discounted rate of $39 per 24 hours to your hotel room charges and provide an in/out access card. 

Daily parking: The daily parking rate (if you are not staying overnight at the hotel) at the garage next to the Hotel Indigo is $14/day if you arrive after 7:00 am and leave before 6:00 pm.  
The Hotel Indigo is also located only 2 blocks from the Chicago CTA's Clark/Division stop on the red line.
Click here for directions and parking information for the Hotel Indigo.
Hotel Reservations
ISACS has secured special discounted room rates at the Hotel Indigo: $125/night plus tax (single occupancy) or $139/night (double occupancy). To make a reservation, call 1-866-2-INDIGO (463446) and request the ISACS September Group and provide the dates of our stay.  Click here to reserve a room online. Special discounted rates have been extended and are available until Wednesday, September 12th.  
Registration Fee
• $125 Member Fee
• $155 Non Member Fee
• First registrant pays full fee, each additional registrant receives a $20 discount
• Workshop includes lunch 
Attend a related workshop on September 28, 2012 - Marketing in a Nanosecond Culture with Richard Honack.  For more information and to register, click here.
Cancellation Policy
Cancellations must be received in writing to ISACS by emailing 10 business days prior to the event to receive a 50% refund. Cancellations received within 10 days of the event will not receive a refund. Registration may be transferred to another member from the same school. ISACS reserves the right to cancel the workshop for insufficient enrollment. In this case, participants will be notified and given a full refund. 
Questions? Please call 312-255-1244.


Member Cost: $125     Non-member Cost: $155


55 West Wacker, Suite 701 · Chicago, IL 60601 · Telephone (312) 750-1190 · Fax (312) 750-1193
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