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Taking the Next Step: How to Help Homeless Youth to Access Financial Aid and Transition to College NAEHCY 2014 Conference.

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Presentation on theme: "Taking the Next Step: How to Help Homeless Youth to Access Financial Aid and Transition to College NAEHCY 2014 Conference."— Presentation transcript:

1 Taking the Next Step: How to Help Homeless Youth to Access Financial Aid and Transition to College NAEHCY 2014 Conference

2 Section I: Choosing a College 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 2

3 Choosing a Campus with Supportive Services for Homeless Youth  Characteristics of Colleges with Supportive Services for Homeless Youth:  Finding the right campus size  Two Year -vs- Four Year  Housing Options  Year round housing, on/off campus options  Financial Aid Assistance  Mentoring  Tutoring  Class Size  Characteristic Grid

4 College Search Tool  General school information  Tuition, fees, and estimated student expenses  Types of financial aid provided  Net price  Enrollment  Admissions requirements  Retention and graduation rates  Accreditation  Campus security statistics  Default rates 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 4

5 Sli d e 6

6 NAEHCY Statewide Networks  Stakeholders from K-12 education, Local homeless liaisons, higher education staff, RHYA and HUD shelter staff, and college access program staff working together to eliminate higher education barriers for homeless youth.  CO, FL, GA, IL, KY, MA, MI, NH, NC, OK  NAEHCY is working with the following states to develop State Higher Education Networks:  IN, MN, NJ, VA  he-networks he-networks

7 Resource: State Programs  Some states have special provisions available for low- income and/or homeless students:  Indiana – Students receiving free lunch receive a tuition waiver when participating in Indiana’s Double Up Program (dual enrollment in college courses for students in 11 th and 12 th grade) tml tml  Indiana – Twenty-First Century Scholars Program - Income-eligible 7th and 8th graders who enroll in the program and fulfill a pledge of good citizenship are guaranteed to receive up to four years of undergraduate tuition at any participating public college or university in Indiana 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 7

8 Resource: State Programs  Florida – Homeless students are exempt from the payment of tuition and fees, including lab fees, at a school district that provides postsecondary career programs, community college, or state university (2011 F.S. 1009.25); Florida statute establishes the definition of “homeless” used pp_mode=Display_Statute&Search_String=&URL =1000-1099/1009/Sections/1009.25.html pp_mode=Display_Statute&Search_String=&URL =1000-1099/1009/Sections/1009.25.html  Look for resources in your state! 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 8

9 Campuses That Have Single Points of Contacts  “Single Point of Contact” – A supportive college administrator on each campus who is committed to helping homeless youth (and often foster youth) successfully navigate the college-going process on campuses  Connects students to Admissions, Financial Aid, Academic Advising, Housing, Community Resources etc.  In place in MI, CO, NC, and GA  In progress in AL, FL, NH, NV, MA, NJ, IN, PA networks

10 Help Student’s Obtain Fee Waivers During High School  SAT/ACT Waiver  ml ml  g/waivers/guidelines/sat g/waivers/guidelines/sat  Admission’s Application Fee Waiver  aiver/Pages/default.aspx aiver/Pages/default.aspx Slide 7

11 Connect Student to Bridge Programs  Individual colleges may offer their own bridge programs to help entering freshmen have a smooth transition.  Offer the following:  College-level courses (earn college credit hours)  Development seminars  College life workshops  Social events  Mentoring provided by current students  Counsel for Opportunities in Education  ome.aspx?hkey=040cec49-d947-4110-b9fa-1f30bef9c919 ome.aspx?hkey=040cec49-d947-4110-b9fa-1f30bef9c919 Slide 10

12 Best Practices in High School Focus on FASFSA completion! o Early awareness o FAFSA Week – see o Inform unaccompanied youth of college options as soon as they are identified as homeless o Make sure high school counselors know about the FAFSA policies for UHY o Arrange for students to visit local colleges and universities o Use a template for determinations – 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 12

13 Best Practices on Campus  Campus advisors can work together to create campus networks to focus on meeting needs of homeless youth  Communicate with local homeless liaisons to streamline the transition process  Get involved with local state network for homeless youth that are accessing higher education  Create a single point of contact (SPOC) on campus  ed ed Slide 22

14 Section II: Paying for College 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 14

15 What is financial aid? Any source of funds other than from the family used to pay college expenses 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 15

16 Sources of Financial Aid  Federal government  States  Colleges  Private sources 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 16

17 Costs that Can be Paid with Financial Aid  Direct costs  Indirect costs 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 17

18 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)  Standard federal form  Must be completed every year  Asks for demographic and financial information  Some students must provide parental information 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 18

19 Dependency Status  Dependent students must provide parental data on FAFSA  Expectation of parental support  Independent students do not provide parental data on FAFSA  No expectation of parental support 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 19

20 Who Can Make a Determination that a Student is an UHY?  School district liaisons  Director or designee of a HUD-funded emergency shelter or transitional housing program  Director or designee of a runaway or homeless youth basic shelter or transitional living program  Financial aid administrator 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 20

21 Department of Education Guidance  Determinations are not the use of professional judgment or a dependency override  Use McKinney-Vento Act definitions  Use of a documented interview 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 21

22 Department of Education Guidance  Reach out to homeless education professionals  Use of discretion  Students may appeal financial aid administrator’s determination to Department of Education 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 22

23 Tools for Financial Aid Administrators  Determination of independent status template  Making determinations tool 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 23

24 Other Forms and Applications  CSS Profile  Institutional applications 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 24

25 Awarding Process Cost of Attendance (COA) ─ Expected Family Contribution (EFC) ____________________________________ Financial Need 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 25

26 Awarding Process  Financial aid packages consist of a mix of:  Grants/scholarships  Work  Loans 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 26

27 Awarding Process Packaging philosophy varies from college to college so a student’s financial aid offer will also vary from college to college 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 27

28 Understanding Budgets  College use the same standard cost components  Value of components will vary based on college type, location, and other factors 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 28

29 Understanding Award Letters  EFC will be the same regardless of college  Mix of aid will vary by college  Look at out of pocket costs 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 29

30 Scholarships  Common sources  Civic organizations  Houses of worship  Nonprofit organizations and foundations 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 30

31 Searching for Scholarships  Fastweb!:  College Board: rship-search rship-search  U.S. Department of Labor: search/ScholarshipCategory.asp?searcht ype=category&nodeid=22 search/ScholarshipCategory.asp?searcht ype=category&nodeid=22 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 31

32 Impact of Outside Scholarships  Could reduce existing aid package from college  Changes depend on school policies and procedures 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 32

33 Resources: Scholarships  Check with the high school’s guidance counselor for a list of private scholarships available to area students  The LeTendre Education Fund Scholarship: (application period closed until 2013)  Give Us Your Poor/Horatio Alger Scholarship: 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 33

34 Undocumented students  Not eligible to receive federal student aid  May be eligible for state and/or institutional aid  Depending on state, may qualify for in- state tuition  General requirements 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 34

35 NAEHCY Higher Education Resources  NAEHCY Toolkit: College Access and Success for Students Experiencing Homelessness available at  Podcast Series  NAEHCY Higher Education Helpline (855) 446-2673 (toll-free)  FAFSA Tips for Unaccompanied Youth Without Stable Housing and Helping Unaccompanied Homeless Youth Access College Financial Aid at

36 2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 36

37 Contact us….  Cyekeia Lee, Director of Higher Education Initiatives, NAEHCY   Jennifer Martin, Director of Training Initiatives, NASFAA  2014 NAEHCY Conference Slide 37

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