Dec 20, 2021
For our students at Oklahoma Panhandle State University, financial aid is one of the first departments they visit. Erin Moore, originally from Biloxi, Mississippi, has served as the Director of Financial Aid since June 2019. She has been a part of the Panhandle State family since 2018 when she started as the Assistant Director for Financial Aid.
In addition to the regular load of federal student aid programs, Erin has taken on the student CARES grant funding. This involves processing the student applications and disbursement for qualifying students and the required reporting for the CARES grant funding.
University President Dr. Tim Faltyn commented, “Erin has always gone above and beyond to give our students the best experience. Her go-getter attitude and ambition are both qualities that have made her successful in this position. I know our students are thankful for the time she dedicates to them.”
Part of Erin’s role in student financial aid, aside from assisting students, is to ensure that the financial aid process complies with federal guidelines, packaging the student aid, disbursing, and notifying students according to federal guidance, among other duties. There is a lot that goes on behind the scenes in the financial aid process.
Provost, Dr. Julie Dinger stated, “Ms. Moore has built a solid reputation as an expert on campus and among her peers in Financial Aid for her work improving processes and ensuring compliance, but her excellence is not limited to her work on scholarships and aid distribution. Erin is a standout leader on campus, she is a mentor known for her wisdom, compassion, and open door to any student or colleague in need.”
Erin’s favorite part of her job is the personal satisfaction in knowing her efforts to further student’s education. “I was a part-time student for nine years to complete my undergraduate degree, so I understand the time, effort, and commitment to completing a degree takes. My end goal every day is to ensure as a department, we are serving our students and meeting their needs for financial aid.”
“I count myself lucky to be surrounded by people at OPSU who are dedicated to the success of students. I am successful because of the administration, and my co-workers in staff and the excellent faculty members all contribute to help make me successful.”
“Don’t be afraid of financial aid,” Erin commented, “Many times, students hear the word financial, and they do a complete shutdown. We have worked hard to establish a culture of openness in financial aid. We welcome students, and we want them to come to us for help. This helps us understand how the student is thinking, and it helps us improve our communication and enhance our processes to better serve the student. It’s what we do best here. We’re passionate about the student experience to be positive when it comes to financial aid.”
The Director of Financial Aid assists with the Student Financial Aid Audit as well. This aid audit involves assisting auditors with any needed documentation and answering questions regarding all federal awards as they sample transactions for an aid year, such as Pell grants, Federal Direct Student Loans, and other Federal student aid programs.
Associate Vice President of Fiscal Affairs, Liz McMurphy, commented, “I’d like to commend Erin for a job well done. This past year has been challenging, and Erin managed to have the best financial aid audit results I’ve seen in my time here despite all of the challenges this year. She has managed to keep us in compliance in all areas under student financial aid, and her work speaks for itself.”
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