Illinois native Jerry Donna will return to his home state to serve as director of Financial Aid at Eastern Illinois University.
Dan Nadler, EIU's vice president for student affairs, announced that Donna, who currently serves as director of Financial Aid at Salem College in North Carolina, will begin his new role on July 20. He replaces Jone Zieren, who recently retired from EIU after more than 30 years of service.
Donna, who attended the University of Illinois-Urbana/Champaign, credits an Illinois Child of a Veteran Scholarship for the opportunity to pursue his higher education.
"I was the first in my family to attend college and financial aid made it possible," he said. "For many students, financial aid makes all the difference in their access to higher education. Part of my role will be to ensure that students understand the process of applying for financial aid and to help them utilize the resources that are available.
"There is already a strong foundation and a great deal of experience in the Financial Aid office at Eastern Illinois University. My major goals will be to build on the successes of the past and to strive for the highest level of student service."
Prior to his current appointment, Donna held positions as assistant director of Financial Aid at the University of North Carolina -- School of the Arts, assistant to the dean of instruction at Florida Community College, program assistant in the Business Office at the University of South Florida, and director of development in the Economic Education Department at Indiana University -- Purdue University.
He earned his M.Ed. in Educational Leadership at the University of North Florida and a B.F.A. in Art Education from the University of Illinois -- Urbana/Champaign with elementary and secondary teaching certificates. He also attended the Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis and the University of South Florida, in graduate-level programs.
Donna is a member of the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators, the Southern Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators and the North Carolina Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators.