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Colorado school streamlines refund distribution through Higher One

Colorado Technical University, one of some 75 campuses that are part of the Career Education Corporation, has become the latest school to sign on with financial services provider Higher One. Under the new program, CTU will begin issuing refunds to students this summer using Higher One’s program.

Higher One’s partnership with CTU includes communicating the program basics to the students so they understand how to take advantage of the new service. Higher One will also collect and maintain student banking information and refund preferences, distribute the refunds, handle returned checks and bounced ACH payments, and field any refund-related customer service inquiries from students and staff.

Students will be able to access a secure website to select how they would like to receive their refunds from the university. Each student will have a choice between direct deposit to a no fee, no minimum balance, OneAccount checking account, an electronic file sent via Automated Clearing House to another bank account of the student’s choice or a paper check mailed to the address on file.

“CEC immediately saw the value in partnering with an outsourced refund solution that would allow for a more timely and efficient delivery of refunds to our student population,” said David Peters, vice president of operations, Centralized Services at CEC.

“Over the course of the vendor selection process, we evaluated numerous potential partners and found that Higher One clearly separated itself from the competition in this space. Their educational focus and experience in this niche business provided a seamless and cost sensitive implementation, allowing for improved student service, reduction in costs, and minimal demands on our internal IT department and business units,” Peters added.

“(We) expect the Higher One program to increase customer satisfaction through a more timely distribution of funds to students, and to provide more accurate student information, thus improving the campus’s ability to communicate to its students,” said Scott McGuire, vice president for finance and operations at CTU Colorado Springs.

“Moreover,” he added, “we expect the program to eliminate many of the administrative duties associated with the current fund distribution process, allowing our financial aid staff to spend more time supporting students. The improved customer service associated with these benefits is expected to strengthen student service which, in turn, will improve student retention at the campus.”

Career Education Corporation’s network of more than 75 campuses serve 90,000 students in the U.S. France, Italy and the United Kingdom with doctoral, master’s, bachelor’s, and associate degree offerings as well as diploma and certificate programs.

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