News & Updates for Education Professionals

  • Financial aid and college decision time. Financial aid awards are arriving, and college decisions are approaching. Encourage your families to complete FAFSA, Vermont grant, and scholarship applications for the 2019–2020 year to be sure they're considered for all available aid. Get more info below
  • College & Career Pathways is underway! Read all about the new format and locations and sign up now to pre-register your school at the remaining events in March and April. 
  • Help your families stay on track with planning for education or training after high school with VSAC's new month-by-month, step-by-step checklists for high school juniors and seniors.

Junior year month-by-month checklist download icon

Senior year month-by-month checklist download icon

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Vermont Grant

Don't let your Vermont students leave money on the table! Encourage your students to do these 3 things:

  • Apply for the Vermont grant For those who have applied, check your MyVSAC account to be sure you've completed all steps.
  • Complete the FAFSA
  • Research and apply for scholarships 

High schools — Did you know that you can use the VSAC FAFSA Completion Tool to identify students who haven't completed their financial aid applications? Contact our grants department (800-882-4166) to ask us how. 

Some Scholarship Deadlines Still Open

Although the deadline has passed for all VSAC-assisted scholarships, students can still apply for other scholarships. Check pp 32-43 of VSAC's scholarships booklet for scholarships with deadlines open through July 30. 

Governor Phil Hoff Vermont Honor Scholarship

VSAC annually awards a Governor Phil Hoff Vermont Honor Scholarship in the amount of $1,000 to one graduating high school senior from Vermont high schools, border schools enrolling Vermont resident students, and Vermont vocational-technical centers. Nomination forms were mailed out in February. Be sure to submit the name of your senior from the Class of 2019 for the 2019-2020 scholarship award. Contact scholarships@vsac.org with any questions about the nomination process.

MyVSAC 

Reminder: The log-in process for MyVSAC was changed for schools and students back in April 2018. If you need help logging into your school’s MyVSAC account, please contact School Services at 888-307-8722. 

Vermont's Statewide FAFSA Completion Goal: 65% of senior class 

VSAC is once again partnering with the Department of Education on a FAFSA completion initiative. How's your community doing? Use our FAFSA Completion Tool to find out.

And join VSAC's FAFSA Completion Challenge: Every high school in which 65% of the senior class completes a FAFSA will be entered into a drawing for $1,000 for a school-approved senior activity.  

FAFSA Updates

  • VSAC's FAFSA Help Line

If your families can't get to the VSAC Resource Center for an appointment, urge them to call our toll-free FAFSA helpline at (1-833) 802VSAC, Monday–Friday, 8:00 am–4:30 pm.

  • Springtime financial aid presentations at Vermont high schools

    High school students & parents who want to learn about ways to pay for college should plan to attend VSAC's Financial Aid & Managing College Costs workshops at statewide high schools in the spring. Dates and locations are posted on our calendar (check often, as new locations are often added). Please promote your event by posting it on your website and e-mailing junior-year students and parents two weeks before your scheduled workshop.

Looking for financial aid resources?

We have what you need for your students & parents.

For newsletters, emails, or daily announcements 

For seniors and parents

Financial aid award notifications and college decisions are approaching. Make sure you've applied for all the financial aid for which you may be eligible, and follow up with any requests.  

  • The FAFSA. Families can get individual assistance during a phone call or an appointment with a VSAC counselor. Call 833-802-VSAC for more information, or go to vsac.org/FAFSAfirst
  • Vermont need-based grants. There's still time to apply at vsac.org/grants. Last year, eligible students received from $1,000 to $12,200 in aid awards during the 2018-2019 academic year.
  • Scholarships. VSAC administers more than 150 scholarships for Vermont students. Reminder: Although the deadline for the VSAC-assisted scholarships is past, there are additional scholarships with deadlines as late as July 30, 2019, listed on pages 32-43 of the VSAC scholarships booklet. For more information, call 888-253-4819 or email scholarships@vsac.org.

For sophomores, juniors & parents: Don't miss College & Career Pathways 2019!

Two more events this spring for our new evening program (5:00-8:00 pm). Attend a resource fair with programs, businesses, and organizations that support Vermonters in achieving their college and career goals and workshops on topics including:

  • The College Search: Finding the Right Fit
  • Navigating the Admissions Process
  • Financial Aid & Managing College Costs
  • Scholarships – Free Money! 

Get answers to your questions: You'll have the unique opportunity to talk with Vermont experts who can support you in preparing for your future. And you don’t have to do it on an empty stomach; free hearty snacks will be provided. Go to vsac.org/ccp for details and registration.

Upcoming dates:

  • Thursday, March 21 — Saint Michael's College
  • Wednesday, April 10 — NVU-Johnson

VSAC's Educational Opportunity Center — easy as a phone call! 

Do you know any adults who would like to take a step toward new career possibilities and aren’t sure where to begin? VSAC’s EOC services can help. Our counselors understand the needs of adult students and are ready to help individuals take steps in a new direction. All services are free.

Call us toll-free today! 
In the Rutland or Bennington areas: 786-8840
In the Burlington area: 654-3793
In all other areas: toll-free 877-961-4369

Read the latest EOC newsletter >

Join Advance Vermont today

Advance Vermont brings together Vermont’s leading education and workforce development experts to build commitment and progress to the ambitious goal of assuring that 70% of Vermonters possess a postsecondary degree or credential of value by 2025. 

Advance Vermont is dedicated to ensuring that Vermonters from every corner of the state, from every economic and educational background, have access to the education they need in order to excel personally and professionally. The effort is a collective-action organization dedicated to leading initiatives and broadening public understanding to achieve the goal.

Learn more at advancevermont.org.

VSAC Research: VSAC’s Research Continues to Shape Higher Education Policy in Vermont

View the latest reports, county fact sheets, and past survey results >

Pre-Register Your School for College & Career Pathways 2019

This spring VSAC’s College & Career Pathways will move from 3 Saturday events to 4 weekday events, with a daytime component for schools, targeted to 10th and 11th graders, and an evening component for families and community members, including resources for adult learners. 

2019 Dates:

  • Wednesday, February 27 — Castleton University 
  • Thursday, March 7 — Southern Vermont College
  • Thursday, March 21 — Saint Michael’s College
  • Wednesday, April 10 — NVU–Johnson

Daytime Field Trip for School Groups 

Schools can now pre-register to bring students to the daytime portion of this year’s College & Career Pathways. Pre-register here to let us know which event you’d like to attend and the approximate number of students you’d like to bring. We expect the daytime portion to reach capacity and recommend pre-registering so we can hold space for your students.

Since this event will offer multiple workshop options, we’ll follow up in early January with a link for your students to register individually in order to choose their workshops. We look forward to hosting your students this year!

 

14th Annual Transition and Career Planning Conference

Learn, Adapt, Change: A Model for Readiness
with keynote speaker Greg Evans, founder, SEEDS Training, Inc.

Learn about Greg's philosophy >

May 23, 2019 
Lake Morey Resort, Fairlee, VT

  • trends in career opportunities
  • career transitions
  • employment outlook
  • all-day school counselor strand on building capacity for college & career readiness

Personalized Learning Plans

VSAC has, for the past 4 years, subsidized the cost of the Naviance career and college planning platform to help schools implement Personalized Learning Plans (PLP). For schools actively using Naviance, VSAC will continue to subsidize the cost during the 2018–2019 school year—the final year that VSAC will provide the subsidy. During the 2019–2020 school year, if you’ve found Naviance to be a useful platform, we hope you’ll consider contracting directly with Hobson’s, Naviance’s parent company, for continued use. Please contact us at naviance@vsac.org.

State and Regional News

Study of 2012 Vermont high school grads reports college outcomes, VTDigger.org
“That’s shocking for me. I think we’re in danger of leaving our first-generation students behind, from a post-secondary education perspective,” VSAC research analyst Robert Walsh told Vermont educational leaders at a summit held at the nonprofit’s headquarters in Winooski on Tuesday.

Barriers to completing college, WCAX
Are Vermont students making the grade? A closer look at college graduation rates in our region.

VSAC and AG warn of scammers posing as student loan servicers, Vermont Business Magazine
Attorney General TJ Donovan joined Vermont Student Assistance Corporation (VSAC) to warn Vermonters about scams involving student loans. Scammers pose as student loan servicers, debt relief companies, document preparation companies or say that you may be eligible for a student loan forgiveness program.

SNHU’s New Program Reimagines the Concept of College, eCampus News
Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU) is redefining the traditional concept of college as the middle ground between high school and the workplace. In a merger with LRNG, a non-profit that serves disadvantaged youth populations, SNHU will work with cities and employers to develop innovative learning and workforce solutions. 

National News

Opinion: How to Train 2 Million Americans for High-Skilled Jobs for Free, The Hill
The idea of employer-provided training is, of course, not an entirely new concept. Up until the late 1990s, most large employers recruited entry-level talent and trained them throughout the course of their careers.  

Late to Launch: The Post-Collegiate Struggle, New York Times
Despite a low unemployment rate, many young adults lack job prospects that mesh with their idealized vision of the post-college world.

When a College Student Comes Home to Stay, New York Times
Thirty percent of freshmen won’t return for their sophomore year, and the wheels can start to fall off as early as Thanksgiving. What can parents do?