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Statewide Campaign Streamlines College Signing Day Planning in Mississippi

Statewide Campaign Streamlines College Signing Day Planning in Mississippi By Brandi Lyndall, Director, GEAR UP Outreach, Get2College In Mississippi, College Signing Day is supported by College Countdown Mississippi. This statewide campaign strives for every graduating high school senior to apply for college at an Application Day event, complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), and recognize their postsecondary plans at a College Signing Day. Mississippi began College C... Read More
at Monday, April 4, 2022

A Guide to Financial Aid Award Letters

A Quick Guide to Financial Aid Award Letters College admissions letters are rolling in for many students across the country, and financial aid offers will be right behind them. These offers – often referred to as award letters – should spark conversations about college affordability between students, families, and the professionals who help them along their postsecondary pathways. Here are a few critical things that students and families need to know about financial aid offers. ... Read More
at Thursday, March 24, 2022

As Year Winds Down, Use NSC Data to Plan Next Steps

Are you looking for access to data to determine if your students are enrolling and persisting in college?  This guest blog from the National College Attainment Network highlights the National Student Clearinghouse, a nonprofit organization that provides student educational outcomes. If your school district is looking to strengthen the college and career readiness class and college attainment, this resource is for you!   As Year Winds Down, Use NSC Data to Plan Next Steps ... Read More
at Monday, November 29, 2021

Making In-Roads Between K-12 and Higher Ed; It’s More Than Freezing Summer Melt

Partnering with colleges and universities can be an effective strategy to help more students pursue post-secondary opportunities. This guest blog by the National College Attainment Network provides ideas and suggestions on how K-12 and Higher Ed can work together to assist students. Making In-Roads Between K-12 and Higher Ed; It’s More Than Freezing Summer Melt Bill DeBaun, National College Attainment Network Earlier this year, NCAN observed that “summer is the time for K-12 a... Read More
at Thursday, October 28, 2021

Gear Up for FAFSA Season: This Year’s Seniors Need It More than Ever

Gear Up for FAFSA Season: This Year’s Seniors Need It More than Ever Bill DeBaun, Director of Data and Evaluation, National College Attainment Network October 1 looms large on the calendar of every college access and success professional in the United States. No, it’s not the date where they set their reminders to break out their Halloween decorations, it’s the date when the FAFSA opens for students and their families to potentially claim their piece of federal (and someti... Read More
at Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Welcome Back to School, These Resources Can Kick Off a Successful Year for Seniors

Looking for ways to incorporate the college conversation into all areas of your high school? This guest blog from the National College Attainment Network highlights resources and helpful tips on how to begin the planning for a successful year for the class of 2022 and support their post-secondary plans.  Reading time: 5 min.  Welcome Back to School, These Resources Can Kick Off a Successful Year for Seniors  Bill DeBaun, National ... Read More
at Thursday, August 26, 2021

FAFSA Completions Were Down, But We Can Get Them to Go Up

As the calendar flips to August, neither the upcoming FAFSA cycle, which opens October 1, nor the ongoing one, which funds students for the 2021-22 academic year, are probably not current priorities for many districts and schools. But, they should be. Read more from our guest blog contributor, Bill DeBaun, Director of Data and Evaluation for the National College Access Network (NCAN) about the national FAFSA completion rate and what can be done to help students. FAFSA Completions Were Down, ... Read More
at Thursday, July 29, 2021

Use Fit and Match to Increase Students’ Success

Your student(s) have applied to college, completed their FAFSA and MAAPP applications, attended orientation, and matched with a roommate, but will they be a part of the 40% of students who enroll in college and don’t complete a credential? How can you as a mentor, counselor, advisor, or community member help your student(s) succeed in college? Read more from our guest blog contributor from the National College Attainment Network (NCAN).  Rea... Read More
at Tuesday, June 29, 2021

Summer is the Time for K-12 and Higher Ed to be Friends

Graduating high school seniors are taking their next steps, but do districts and schools really know where they’re headed? Consistent, meaningful, and productive contact between K-12 and the higher ed institutions to which students matriculate could benefit students and increase their likelihood of matriculating successfully. Summer is a good time to start building, or continue strengthening, these connections. We dig into how in this blog from Bill DeBaun at the National College Attain... Read More
at Tuesday, May 25, 2021

High School Graduation Checklist for Educators

As the final semester of the 2020-21 school year comes to a close, graduating seniors will be out the door and onto their next life plan. These next few weeks may be the last time students will be accessible and available to receive college-going support. Use these four checklist items from guest blog writer, Ainsley Ash from the National College Attainment Network, to help students transition to college.   As the semester winds down, graduating seniors will be out the door and onto wh... Read More
at Thursday, April 29, 2021

Stopping Summer Melt Starts in the Spring

Are you ready for graduation? Develop a senior exit survey as a part of your plan! Understanding your students’ plans once they walk across the graduation stage is a key piece to help them transition to college. But how to make sure you collect information in the survey that will be helpful? The National College Attainment Network (NCAN) guest wrote the blog found below which includes guidance for high schools on creating a strategy to support your seniors’ transition.  ... Read More
at Monday, April 5, 2021

A Quick Guide to Financial Aid Award Letters

Ainsley Ash, Meridian native, senior at the University of Mississippi, and communication intern for the National College Attainment Network (NCAN), offers a guide to assist students with interpreting financial aid awards letters. Many students will begin receiving financial aid packages over the next month. Read how to best assist students in interpreting financial aid offers and determining the total cost of college.    ... Read More
at Monday, March 22, 2021

FAFSA Verification Remains a Hurdle for Students; Here’s What We Know

Verification is an all-too-common hurdle for Mississippi students in the college enrollment process. The National College Attainment Network (NCAN) recently provided this guest blog post to build awareness of the impact of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) verification process. You can read more about the FAFSA on our previous blog post here.    FAFSA Verification Remains a Hurdle for Students; Here&rsq... Read More
at Monday, March 1, 2021

Free College & Career Resources for K-12 Educators

In the fall of 2020, the National College Attainment Network (NCAN) released a resources page specifically for K-12 districts and schools. This page is a one-stop-shop for districts or schools to create, change, or improve their college-going culture including a 15-month planning calendar organized by topic, introduction to National Student Clearinghouse StudentTracker, and other key approaches to supporting postsecondary transitions for high school stu... Read More
at Thursday, February 11, 2021

In the Face of a Pandemic, Two Schools Collaborate to Advance Student Learning

Gia Montgomery, a senior at Murrah High School in Jackson, Mississippi, had a lot riding on her AP Calculus class this spring. Gia is heading to Macalester College in the fall to double major in biology and classics, with plans to pursue a career as an Ob-Gyn. With a qualifying score on the AP exam, Gia, and the 17 other students in the class, would gain course credit toward their undergraduate degrees. But then the unexpected happened. The teacher of the Murrah AP class gave notice halfway ... Read More
at Tuesday, June 2, 2020

Can I Update My FAFSA Due to COVID-19?

There’s a lot of uncertainty in our world right now, and for high school students or current college students preparing for the fall semester, you likely have a lot of questions. There are two primary questions that students are asking in regards to their FAFSA for the 2020-2021 academic year. Can I update the asset portion of my FAFSA? (Ex. The stock market is unstable and so my parents’ assets have changed). What if my parent has lost their job due to COVID-19 and our... Read More
at Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Dig Into the Data

Mississippi students who complete a FAFSA have 4.6 times greater odds of enrolling in college than those who did not complete a FAFSA. Yet, students who could benefit from financial aid the most are less likely to apply leaving some of the $120 billion in financial aid on the table each year to help pay for college. That’s why, along with our partners, we assist students and high schools with FAFSA completion. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is necessary to receive ... Read More
at Wednesday, February 5, 2020

New Fund Established to Increase College Access

The Community Foundation of Northwest Mississippi has received a grant of $50,000 from the Woodward Hines Education Foundation (WHEF) to fund activities that increase college awareness and create pathways to postsecondary education among high school students in the following 18 Mississippi Delta counties: Bolivar, Carroll, Coahoma, Desoto, Holmes, Humphreys, Issaquena, Leflore, Panola, Quitman, Sharkey, Sunflower, Tallahatchie, Tate, Tunica, Warren, Washington, and Yazoo. “Our top prio... Read More
at Monday, January 13, 2020

New Options for the ACT Test Offer Students More Choices

by Brandi Lyndall   Beginning with the September 2020 national ACT test, students will have more choices, a flexible test-taking experience, and greater opportunity that their ACT test scores best reflect their overall academic achievement. ACT will implement these four major changes next year. Section Retesting:  Students who have taken the ACT test on a national test day will have the opportunity to retake one or more single-section ACT tests (... Read More
at Friday, November 1, 2019

ACT WorkKeys® Provides a National Certification

by Brandi Lyndall   Whether you're thinking about the next phase of your education, launching a new career, or making a transition in your current job, the ACT WorkKeys assessment system can help. ACT WorkKeys is a system of curriculum and assessments that build and measure essential workplace skills that can affect your job performance and increase opportunities for career changes and advancement. With ACT WorkKeys, you can earn the National Career Readiness Certificate&nbs... Read More
at Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Counselor Resource Alert: Social Media Toolkit

This year, Get2College is launching a new social media toolkit, designed to help counselors, college admissions staff, parents, and community leaders engage students by sharing news and college access information. The toolkit will be available on our website and will include information about the FAFSA, ACT dates, College Signing Days, state financial aid deadlines, degree and college types, sources of financial aid, and more. The Get2College social media toolkit is free and easy-to-use and ... Read More
at Friday, August 30, 2019

Enlisting in Education

by Brandi Lyndall   The Department of Veterans Affairs provides education financial assistance to veterans and dependents but determining the options, benefits and eligibility can be complicated. Since 1944, the GI Bill has offered qualifying veterans and their family members money to cover all or some of the costs for school or training. Currently, the GI Bill outlines two ways for veterans to qualify for aid, but only one GI Bill program can be used to pay for college. Post... Read More
at Monday, July 22, 2019

Selected for Verification?

by Brandi Lyndall   After submitting the FAFSA, you may have seen a note on your Student Aid Report (SAR) saying you’ve been selected for verification. Or, your college might have sent you an email telling you that you’ve been chosen. Verification is the federal process colleges use to confirm that the data reported on your FAFSA is accurate. So, here’s what you need to know to complete verification. First, Don’t assume you did anything wrong or incorrect. Som... Read More
at Thursday, June 20, 2019

Attention Adult Learners: We are Here to Help

If you’re an adult who is considering going back to school, chances are you are juggling a lot—a full-time job, family, tight budget and an already full plate of responsibilities. But, we are here to help. Whether you are looking to complete a college degree, certificate or credential for the first time, or you are going back to school to start a new career path, here’s some advice. First—Find your “WHY.” Whether you are seeking the personal feelings of a... Read More
at Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Student Spotlight: Zaria Ford

We recently sat down with a current high school senior to talk about her plans after graduation. Here’s what she said:    Name: Zaria Simone Ford Age 18 Years Old Hometown: Greenville, MS   Plans after graduation: After graduation, I plan to attend Mississippi State University, where I will major in Biochemistry with a pre-dental concentration. Career goals: I plan to become a Pediatric Dentist Why do you want to go to college? I want to attend college because I k... Read More
at Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Camp College Helps Make Summer Count

Mississippi students have an opportunity to use their summer to get ahead in the college process by participating in Camp College, a free, week-long program designed to help rising seniors prepare for the transition from high school to college. Funded by the Woodward Hines Education Foundation, Camp College is held each summer at the three Get2College centers, located in Jackson, Southaven and Ocean Springs. Camp College begins the week of June 10 and registration is currently open. Camp Col... Read More
at Thursday, March 28, 2019

Understanding Financial Aid Offers

Think of a financial aid offer as an offer letter from the colleges and universities you have applied to. They typically arrive in March for most schools and can arrive as late as April for private, selective colleges. It is not uncommon to receive multiple financial aid offers from the same school—one detailing scholarship awards and one detailing need-based financial aid. These offers are available by logging into your school portal and spell out the details of your overall financial ... Read More
at Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Get2College Corps Members Find Program Participation Meaningful

Get2College, a program of the Woodward Hines Education Foundation, is proud to partner with Phi Theta Kappa to assist students and their families with navigating the complex financial aid process by supporting their FAFSA completion efforts through the Get2College Corps. The Get2College Corps is a competitive, paid internship for high-achieving community college students who are members of Phi Theta Kappa. There are currently 17 students from 12 Mississippi community colleges who participate... Read More
at Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Get2College Launches New FAFSA Tracker

Get2College, a program of the Woodward Hines Education Foundation, has launched a dashboard, aimed at helping high schools track FAFSA completion among their high school seniors. Financial aid is one of the barriers for college access and completion for underserved students. Completion of the FAFSA has a strong correlation to college access. In addition completion of the FAFSA by priority deadlines links low-income students to critical financial resources. The goal of the new dashboard is to... Read More
at Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Woodward Hines awards $440,000 grant to Phi Theta Kappa for Golden Opportunities scholarships

On January 16, 2019, Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society and Woodward Hines Education Foundation announced a $440,000 grant to benefit high-achieving two-year college students in Mississippi with financial need. Phi Theta Kappa provides academic, social, and financial support to an otherwise vulnerable population of students, and its members complete college at a higher rate than non-members. This scholarship will enable thousands of Mississippi students with financial need to join Phi Theta Kappa ... Read More
Posted by Lauren Livingston at Monday, January 28, 2019

Evaluating our Pilot School Program

The Woodward Hines Education Foundation and the Social Science Research Center at Mississippi State University are working together to evaluate the Get2College Pilot School Program, which seeks to increase the number of students getting to college in Mississippi. In order to increase the numbers of students going to, persisting and completing college, the Pilot School Program, which is currently being implemented in eight high schools across Mississippi, uses nationally identified best practi... Read More
at Friday, January 4, 2019

Phi Theta Kappa Podcast

Get2College Assistant Director and Project Manager Kierstan Dufour sat down with Phi Theta Kappa President and CEO Dr. Lynn Tincher-Ladner this week to talk FAFSA on the Phi Theta Kappa CEO Podcast. Take a listen to learn how to determine if you are a dependent or independent student, important information on FAFSA deadlines, how to complete the FAFSA if you are a DACA student, and more. LISTEN TO THE PODCAST Read More
at Thursday, December 20, 2018

It’s College Application Month in Mississippi

Mississippi Governor Phi Bryant issued a proclamation recognizing October as College Application Month. In the proclamation, Gov. Bryant recognizes the importance of completing college applications as a step towards pursuing a postsecondary degree or credential. He also recognizes that a postsecondary degree or credential has been linked to higher income and better health. In the proclamation, Gov. Bryant encourages all public high schools to participate by having activities designed to incre... Read More
at Monday, October 8, 2018

Get2College Launches First U-HAFTA FAFSA® Challenge in Mississippi

NCAN member Woodward Hines Education Foundation's Get2College program knows that moving the needle on FAFSA completion isn't easy. It takes creativity, partnerships, and a belief that "First U-HAFTA FAFSA®" if you want to pursue postsecondary education. Over the past several years, Get2College has worked to increase FAFSA completion in Mississippi, one of the nation's poorest states. Get2College offers free one-on-one FAFSA support for students and families in each ... Read More
at Thursday, September 13, 2018

The ABCs of the ACT

For many college-bound high school students and adults, the ACT is a rite of passage required by most community and four-year colleges and universities to measure a student’s overall college readiness and to determine merit-based scholarship eligibility. The standardized test is offered seven 7 times per year and covers subject areas including math, science, reading and English—with an optional section focused on writing. The ACT covers 215 questions in less than three hours. Each... Read More
at Friday, July 27, 2018

Ready for College?

Are you thinking about attending a two or four-year college/university next year? If not, you should be! Unfortunately, many high school students believe college is not for them. As a higher education administrator with over 14 years of experience, I am saddened when talking to high school students who believe they would not do well in college. Almost all high school graduates can succeed in post-secondary education if they are committed and willing to work hard to achieve their degree. I am ... Read More
at Wednesday, June 13, 2018

6 Do’s and Don’ts for Planning a Successful College Fair

Planning a successful college fair takes more than just scheduling the gym and getting on the recruiters’ calendars. Picture this: A high school freshman comes to the college fair in the school gym and sets off on a scavenger hunt arranged by her counselor. Equipped with a map and a plastic bag, she makes the rounds to each college recruiter’s table to ask about their majors and school size and collect their informational brochures, as well as a few college-branded items. She fil... Read More
at Thursday, April 19, 2018