New from NACAC: Financial Aid 101 E-Learning Course

Planning how to finance a four-year degree has become a more prominent part of the college application process.

A new e-learning course from NACAC is now available to help college counselors and admission officers confidently field financial aid questions from families.

More than just a webinar or educational session, the online course—Financial Aid 101— includes eight easy-to-use learning modules packed with information on subjects like loans, grants, scholarships, and work-study. Informative graphics and videos break down key concepts, while quizzes help you measure your progress.

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Counselors Change Lives

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As a counselor, it is too easy to feel unappreciated or to feel as though you aren’t making a difference.

But one former student is here to reassure you that even the smallest acts can make the biggest difference.

Gloria Delores Chin recently wrote a beautiful tribute to her high school college counselor, Dr. Donald Comras, in the New York Daily News thanking him for being “a source of support.”

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Report: In-State Tuition for Undocumented Students Yields Economic Benefits

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The benefits of extending in-state tuition to undocumented students in Virginia far outweigh the costs, according to a new report from The Commonwealth Institute for Fiscal Analysis.

The organization found that the policy, enacted in 2014, does not create a cost burden to the state and has not resulted in overcrowded classrooms.

“The cost to colleges and the state of providing access to in-state tuition for students with Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) immigration status is small compared to the potential economic benefits,” the institute noted in a press release highlighting the report’s findings.

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#NACACreads Author Shares Resources to Help Undocumented Students

It’s a time of uncertainly and fear for undocumented students.

DACA recipients will lose protection from deportation in March. And although lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have voiced support for the DREAM Act, disagreements over border security and other issues have stalled legislative action.

Yet despite current conditions, college counselors and admission officers are uniquely positioned to offer support and hope to young immigrants, author/activist Julissa Arce noted during a Tuesday #NACACreads chat.

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WaPo Offers a Peek Inside the Holistic Admission Process

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College applications are on the rise and the process can be complicated, both for students and admission professionals.

The average number of applications each admission office staff member reviews annually is 854, according to NACAC’s State of College Admission (SOCA).

These high numbers can be daunting, especially for schools that engage in a holistic review of applicants.

The Washington Post recently took a closer look at the review process at the University of Maryland, offering parents and students a rare glimpse into the inner workings of the admission world and giving admission professionals a chance to share what it takes to make these tough decisions.

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#NACACreads: Join Tomorrow’s Discussion

An estimated 65,000 undocumented immigrants graduate from US high schools each year.

In 2001, Julissa Arce was one of those students.

Join us Tuesday for a #NACACreads discussion of her book: My (Underground) American Dream. The author/activist will participate in the hour-long Twitter discussion, and there will be plenty of opportunities for you to share your own thoughts and discuss strategies to help undocumented youth access higher education.

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Colleges Contend with Cuts Following Declines in International Student Enrollment

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US colleges experiencing declines in international student enrollment are beginning to feel the crunch, according to a recent New York Times article.

Preliminary figures from the Institute for International Education (IIE) showed a 6.9 percent decrease this fall in the number of international students studying in the US.

The downturn comes on the heels of “a decade of explosive growth in foreign student enrollment,” according to the article.

“Just as many universities believed that the financial wreckage left by the 2008 recession was behind them, campuses across the country have been forced to make new rounds of cuts, this time brought on, in large part, by a loss of international students,” the Times noted. “Schools in the Midwest have been particularly hard hit — many of them non-flagship public universities that have come to rely heavily on tuition from foreign students, who generally pay more than in-state students.”

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Opinion: Make Internships a College Graduation Requirement

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Requiring undergraduates to complete an internship would benefit both students and colleges, according to Brandon Busteed, executive director for education and workforce development at Gallup.

“The top reason students, parents, and the public value higher education is to get a good job,” Busteed noted in a blog post co-written by Zac Auter, a consulting analyst at Gallup. “Yet, among bachelor degree graduates from 2002-2016, only 27 percent had a good job waiting for them upon graduation.”

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Member View: Foster Acceptance in the New Year

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A brand new year, a brand new you?

Across the country, millions of Americans are setting resolutions — vowing to build good habits and break bad ones over the next 12 months.

Hit the gym? Eat right? Unplug? All valid goals, says NACAC member Brennan Barnard.

But for college-bound students, he’d like to add one more to the list.

“In 2018, I am resolving to foster acceptance, and will encourage my students to do the same,” Barnard, who works at The Derryfield School (NH), wrote in a recent column published by The Huffington Post.

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Daily updates on NACAC and the world of college admission counseling. For more information about NACAC, visit nacacnet.org.