Code of Conduct policy

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UWL Financial Aid Office Code of Conduct

University of Wisconsin System Policy on Institutional and Employee Relationships with Educational Loan Lenders
    4.1 UW institutions may not solicit, accept, or enter into an agreement in which an educational loan lender provides fees, revenue sharing or material benefits to the UW institution in exchange for the institution or its employees recommending the lender or its loan products.
    4.2 UW institutions:
         (a) May not enter into an agreement with a lender of education loans for, or solicit or accept from a lender of education loans, any funds that would be allocated or used for opportunity pools or any similar arrangements; and
         (b) May not solicit or accept assistance for call center or financial aid staffing from a lender of education loans.
    4.3 UW institutions must inform students who apply for financial aid:
         (a) That students may use any lender who is eligible to make education loans; and
         (b) Of available federal loans and encourage students to explore and weigh the use of federal loans that are guaranteed, regulated, and may be more advantageous, before pursuing private or alternative loans.
    4.4 UW institutions may maintain lender lists, either in print or other media, of educational loan lenders, subject to the following:
         (a) UW institutions must use an evaluative process for the inclusion of lenders on the list; information regarding the selection of lenders, the evaluative process used, and the criteria used for such selection must be available to the public upon request;
         (b) A lender list must be accompanied by a statement explaining that students are not limited to the lenders included on the list;
         (c) A lender list must include a minimum of three lenders; and
         (d) UW institutions should work with the educational loan lenders on the list to ensure that specific loan information and key details (including, but not limited by enumerations to, the terms, interest rate, and repayment requirements) are available from the lender in a clear and understandable manner.
    4.5 Notwithstanding any other provisions of this Policy, UW institutions may accept from lenders of education loans:
         (a) Counseling and educational materials for use by students and their families regarding student lending laws, education loans, financial literacy, debt management and other topics relevant to providing students and their families with financial aid assistance; any such materials must clearly disclose the source of said materials and may not use trademarks, logos, mascots or other symbols associated with the UW institution that would suggest any UW institutional endorsement of the lender or product;
         (b) Training to UW employees regarding student lending laws, education loans, financial literacy, debt management and other topics relevant to student financial aid; and 
         (c) Assistance in the same manner that the U.S. Department of Education may assist UW institutions and employees under the Department's Direct Loan Program.
    4.6 Recognizing that separate support organizations, such as alumni associations or booster organizations, may have their own agreements with education loan lenders, UW institutions will urge such organizations to adhere to appropriate standards of conduct for entering into such agreements, as developed by their professional associations.

    5.1 UW employees may not solicit, accept, or enter into any agreement in violation of paras. 4.1 and 4.2 of this Policy, and may not engage in conduct that violates the conflict of interest and ethical standards of Wis. Stats. § 19.41, et. seq., Code of Ethics for Public Officials and Employees; and UWS 8 or ER-MRS 24, Wis. Adm. Code. 
    5.2 UW employees may, in order to improve service to students, participate on an advisory council of an educational loan lender, but may not receive compensation or reimbursement from the lender for any costs incurred as part of such participation, consistent with UW Financial Administration Policy F-30.
    5.3 UW employees will be regularly informed regarding the provisions of this Policy.

The University of Wisconsin - La Crosse Financial Aid Office adheres to the University of Wisconsin System Policy on Institutional and Employee Relationships with Educational Loan Lenders.