Study: Interest in International Transfer Pathways Growing Among Community Colleges

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Community colleges are an integral facet of the US higher education system. Serving nearly 6.3 million students, these public, two-year institutions offer a variety of courses and degree programs at a third of the price charged by four-year colleges. Because most community colleges have transfer agreements with baccalaureate-granting institutions, many students who seek a bachelor’s degree initially matriculate at a community college to take advantage of its cost-saving benefits. In fact, data from the National Student Clearinghouse show that 49 percent of students who completed a degree at a four-year university in 2015-16 had previously enrolled in a community college during the last 10 years.

Community colleges have typically established transfer agreements with local and regional institutions. These include “2+2” pathway programs, which guarantee admission for students at the partner four-year college if specific academic requirements are met, and articulation agreements that delineate how specific coursework will transfer between programs.

Results from a recent survey of 140 community colleges conducted by NACAC and Community Colleges for International Development (CCID) indicate a growing number of these colleges are also interested in pursuing transfer partnerships with universities abroad.

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Hobsons Launches Counselor Community

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Editor’s note: While the Admitted blog regularly reports on NACAC’s own research, products, and services, or those available from non-profit sources, we occasionally feature posts that focus on the work of our partners and sponsors in the private sector.

You’ve worked in the admission office for three years, and now you must take over a new territory. You don’t know the schools, you’re not familiar with the high school counselors — oh, and you need to figure out your travel schedule in just a week or so. How do you know where to visit? What’s the makeup of the student body at the schools on your visit list?

Or — you’re a high school counselor with students who have some fairly detailed questions about College A. You want to email or call the admission officer who works with schools in your area, but you don’t know who that is. How long will it take to find that information on the college’s website?

You can find the answers to these questions and many more in the new Hobsons Counselor Community.

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Sylvia Karpf Celebrates 30 Years with NACAC

Sylvia Karpf

Sylvia Karpf knows what it takes to keep NACAC’s National College Fairs program humming along.

From planning and promoting individual fairs, to negotiating with vendors and managing the program’s operating budget—Karpf has done it all over her three-decade tenue with the association.

“I still come to work with the same excitement that I had on my first day,” said Karpf, who joined the college fairs program as an administrative assistant and now serves as the department’s senior associate director. “I love the program, and I love what I do.”

Karpf, who celebrates her 30th year with NACAC this month, recently sat down with Admitted to talk about finding her niche, the value of college fairs, and what inspires her work.

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Rethinking the Campus Visit

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Campus visits often play an influential role in a student’s enrollment decision, but one clinical psychologist is questioning whether teens rely too heavily on their initial impressions when selecting a college.

“If we are making a decision we haven’t made before (such as where to go to college) then our present selves must rely on imagination, instead of experience,” Erica Reischer writes in a recent New York Times op-ed. “…Visiting the campus — to take a tour, meet students, get the lay of the land — seems like a prerequisite to making a good decision. But visiting a college is not the same as being a student there, and this distinction matters a lot, because of the many ways in which our imagination misleads us.”

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Imagine Fund Supports Iowa Student Conference

Teens need good information as they approach the college application process, but they also need inspiration.

The latter factor is a key component of an Iowa youth leadership conference that encourages teens to include higher education in their postsecondary plans.

The day-long event — held last month at Mount Mercy University (IA) — was supported by a $900 grant from NACAC’s Imagine Fund. The conference is aimed at students who have traditionally been underserved by America’s colleges and universities.

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Study: Implementation of Individualized Learning Plans Varies Across US High Schools

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About 72 percent of public high school students are required to have a graduation, career, or education plan, according to findings released this month by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). This figure supports data collected by NACAC as part of its 2015 study of individualized learning plans (ILPs), which indicated that all 50 states had in place at least one initiative for promoting college and career planning among high school students.

In fact, 29 states plus the District of Columbia mandate the development of ILPs in secondary schools, but the ways in which these plans are implemented vary greatly.

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New Website Explores College Affordability

Cost of Education.Many of us working with students in the college search and selection process struggle to help families understand college affordability. While most students will not pay the full cost of attendance, many will use sticker price to eliminate colleges from their list before they have the chance to weigh financial aid packages and scholarship offers.

What are best practices in talking to students and families about financial aid, student debt, and fit and finances? How do we best explain longer-term benefits beyond financial gain, inherent in the value of higher education, to high school juniors and seniors? How do we address the value of borrowing for college?

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New Survey Measures Public Perceptions of Higher Ed

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A new national poll paints a troubling picture of how the public views college access.

In a survey of 1,600 US adults, more than half of all respondents disagreed with the notion that all Americans have a decent chance of getting into a good college.

The finding is part of a larger report released this morning by New America examining public perceptions and knowledge of higher education and economic mobility.

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Study: Extra Years in College Cut into Income, Retirement

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In just a few short months, a new crop of freshmen will begin their college journey.

For first-year students, four years may seem like more than enough time to pick a major and earn a degree.

But national data shows that roughly one in five students take longer to complete college. And each extra year cuts into their lifetime earnings and retirement savings, according to an analysis by NerdWallet — a San Francisco-based consumer finance company.

“Taking six years to get a four-year college degree can cost students up to almost $300,000 in tuition, interest on loans, and forgone income and retirement savings,” the report notes.

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3 Ways to Help Vets Succeed

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More than 5 million post-9/11 service members are projected to transition out of the military by 2020.

Many will seek out higher education. But while veterans can bring tremendous value to the nation’s college campuses, their path to a degree is often more complex than that of a traditional undergrad.

Veteran students are typically older than their peers. Many juggle work and family responsibilities. And on top of that, adjusting to civilian life comes with its own set of hurdles.

“Veterans value their education benefits, but it’s often a very difficult transition,” said Tommy Lucas, interim director of the Office of Military and Veteran Enrollment Services at Saint Louis University (MO).

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