Brett Schraeder joined the Financial Aid Optimization team in 2015, but his connection to the company spans his entire career. He has been a client at a number of institutions and served for a brief time as a data analyst while pursuing graduate work. He has extensive campus experience, most recently as Vice President for Strategic Initiatives at Occidental College in Los Angeles.
Brett has had an unusually comprehensive set of roles at a variety of colleges and universities. He knows recruitment, data management, data analysis, financial aid at both strategic and operational levels, strategic planning, institution-wide budgeting, board management and governance, and marketing and communications. He holds a BA in mathematics from Whittier College and an MBA from the USC Marshall School of Business.
Brett is both a spectator and a coach of youth soccer and baseball. He had a notable day a few years ago when he visited the Great Wall of China in the morning and, with the help of time zones, made it back in time for the Little League championship game that same day in California.
Birthplace/Hometown: Denver, CO
First job: The Denver Zoo – first in concessions and later working special events like concerts, which included John Denver and Blues Traveler.
Favorite class in college: Abstract Algebra or History of Mathematics (yes, I am a geek).
What have you learned about colleges that you didn’t expect? Don't be too envious of others; they each have their own unique issues and challenges.
What skill do you have that you rarely get to use? I make the best grilled cheese.
What’s the best thing about the people you work with? Their intelligence, sense of humor, and commitment to the colleges and universities they work with – as if they were on the staff.