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Posted November 11, 2015 by

Three tips for military service members enrolling in higher education

Three tips for military service members enrolling in higher education

Tracey Thomas, making a difference in military service members' lives  at UACCB since 2003

Tracey Thomas, making a difference in military service members’ lives at UACCB since 2003

Understanding VA Educational Benefits

Military service members are often on “information overload” after exiting the military, so they may bypass or misunderstand information given to them. The best thing veterans can do after discharge is talk to a School Certifying Official about the process of accessing VA (Veterans Affairs) Education Benefits. Understanding how to access their benefits, the rules and regulations required for maintaining their benefits and how their benefits payout will help eliminate any misunderstandings and stress. This also allows service members to make informed decisions when presented with options and when deciding how best to juggle school, family, employment, and finances. Active, Reserve, and National Guard members face these same challenges plus a few more because they may qualify for tuition assistance and/or a state funded benefit, so learning the regulations and processes of multiple VA Education Benefits can be especially overwhelming. Navigating this process is not something students should attempt alone.

Don’t rush the process

Trying to jump into school a few weeks after discharge may cause unnecessary stress. It takes time for the Department of Veteran Affairs to process a new application, as well as other types of financial aid, so this will cause a delay in receiving financial assistance. Sometimes it’s better to delay enrollment for one semester, allowing service members adequate time to submit all required documents for college admissions offices; this also ensures all available financial aid is in place when enrolling. This prevents undue stress and frustrations, so service members and veterans can fully concentrate on successfully completing their classes.

Overload of courses

Since VA Education Benefits are limited (36-48 months), some service members try to take an overload of courses to complete their programs quickly. About a month into the semester, service members realize they took on too much when trying to juggle employment, family, and school. If classes are dropped, this may lead to overpayments of financial aid and/or their VA Education Benefits. Service members need to remember it is better to take an extra semester to successfully complete all courses stress-free than to fail or drop courses due to overload and possibly end up in overpayment as well.

Above all, service members should keep in touch with their local School Certifying Official(s) to receive prompt answers to questions, to avoid miscommunication regarding benefits, and to receive support and encouragement while on campus. We’re here to help.

 

Tracey Thomas, Assistant Registrar/School Certifying Official at the University of Arkansas Community College at Batesville (UACCB) since 2003, provides daily assistance to service members and their families in accessing their VA Education Benefits, informing them of VA requirements, certifying enrollment to the VA, providing academic advising, tracking attendance and progress, and offering a listening ear when they become frustrated or want to share their stories of success and accomplishment. Tracey also serves as a mentor for the School Certifying Officials in Arkansas. She says the best part of her job is helping service members and their families. “I feel we owe them for their sacrifices, so it’s important for me to give a little back.”

 

Posted October 17, 2015 by

Grueling FAFSA application process leaves money on the table, hurts students

directly above photograph of a grant application

Directly above photograph of a grant application. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

As the cost of college tuitions skyrocket, the world of academia is constantly growing more competitive, which is causing a large number of students to second guess their options for college. Today, a college education can be financially intimidating, especially when your main form of payment is through some sort of government aid, student loan, or the hope for a potential scholarship. With college costing an average student more than $30,000 per year, students are actively seeking any monetary help possible to ensure they are not haunted by a mountain of debt after graduation. (more…)

Posted August 20, 2015 by

4 Ways Colleges and Universities Can Benefit from Grant Management

grants word on paper folder showing scholarship or higher education concept

Grants word on paper folder showing scholarship or higher education concept. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

Colleges and universities offer grants as a comprehensive resource as it assists students and faculty in meeting the cost of operation of the institution. In the past, a post-secondary degree was considered a pathway to opportunities for the growing jobs in the new economy. Employment requires education beyond a high school, thus there is a need for higher education. However, many individuals find it difficult to access education at the university level because of various reasons. Various stakeholders came up with appropriate programs that supplement and support education at a higher standard. The introduction of grants to colleges and universities has greatly helped. Here are some of the benefits of higher learning institutions that implement proper grant managing experience. (more…)

Posted July 29, 2015 by

What to Know Before you Start Paying Student Loans

Student Loan installment payment check paying back money owed in obligation for borrowed funding for college or university education

Student Loan installment payment check paying back money owed in obligation for borrowed funding for college or university education. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

Paying for a college education can be expensive, and many students will use student loans to finance at least a portion of their education. Most graduates leave school owing tens of thousands of dollars or more, and these funds must be repaid at some point. If the time has come for you to start making your payments, it is important you understand what all of your options are for handling this debt. (more…)

Posted July 18, 2015 by

Job Seeker Webinar Careers in the Foreign Service – The Exam Process and Student Opportunities

There are great opportunities to become a Foreign and Civil Service officer. The positions are taken very seriously and the application process is very intricate. But there are fellowship and internship opportunities to become involved while still going to graduate school.

Andrea McEwen-Henderson, National Account Manager for College Recruiter, hosts this recorded webinar with Ana Escrogima, Diplomat in Residence for the New York Metro area, who discusses the Foreign Service Exam and the Civil Service hiring process. She also reviews the State Department internship program and various graduate fellowship opportunities.

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Posted May 06, 2015 by

Study Abroad Provides the Edge You Need in Today’s Global Economy

Mark Shay of Abroad101

Mark Shay of Abroad101

Mark Shay is a business leader with a long history of success helping higher education institutions recruit and retain students.

In a career that has spanned three decades, Mark has served over 3,000 customers, ranging from individual program managers, to university presidents and foreign governments. He is known throughout the higher education industry as an innovator for developing products like GradSchools.com and StudyAbroad.com, creating international student recruiting solutions for agents and universities, and his consulting expertise in areas of sales and marketing. (more…)

Posted March 27, 2015 by

Early Spring Scholarship Roundup

Scholarship application form with hundred dollar bills

Scholarship application form with hundred dollar bills. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

When trying to fund your education, scholarships are one of the best options to consider. Depending upon your situation you may be looking for ways to pay for classes, room and board, books and more. Scholarships can come in handy for all such expenses. Unfortunately as a graduate student the number of scholarships that are available is cut significantly in comparison to those that are available to undergraduate students. However, there are still some quality options worth looking into. Below are four scholarships that you could consider as a graduate student. (more…)

Posted March 27, 2015 by

The Ultimate Guide to Paying for College Tuition

Sarah Landrum photo

Sarah Landrum

Let’s be honest, college is expensive. Loans and scholarships enable more people to attend college than ever before, but the current economic climate is still an obstacle when it comes to covering the cost of college. With the U. S. economy in a state of recovery, credit is tightening and tuition costs are rising – leaving students to wonder how they can pay for college without going broke. (more…)

Posted March 09, 2015 by

Soldier for Life: Connecting Employers to Veterans

On December 8, 2014, human resource leaders from federal, state, and local government agencies came together at the offices of the U.S. General Services Administration for a day of intense learning about how your agency can more efficiently and effectively recruit recent college grads and students.

The College Recruiting Bootcamp event was organized by College Recruiter, the leading niche job board used by recent college graduates searching for entry-level jobs and students hunting for internships.

In this video, Colonel Adam Rocke, Director of the Soldier for Life Program for the U.S. Army, delivers his presentation on, “Soldier for Life: Connecting Employers to Veterans.” To download the PowerPoint for the presentation, click here.

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Posted March 06, 2015 by

Getting a few pointers from the educators in the USA

Girl pointing to map of United States and smiling at viewer

Girl pointing to map of United States and smiling at viewer. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

The USA is a country with a well-established education system that is proving its efficiency. Here are a few takeaways from the US system of education.

Affordability – access to education for everyone

The system of education in the United States of America is one which is considered a very successful and efficient one. Where there is always room for improvement and the USA’s education system has its faults, there are a lot of things that can be learnt from it. One of the most notable of the USA’s system of education is the access to education for all children. Education is free in the United States of America, as well as transportation to school. It is compulsory for all children to attend school. Since 1918, all states in the USA require children to complete elementary school. (more…)