Categories
Articles

Financial Aid Awards Explained

These are the 4 different types of Financial Aid awards you can receive. While the amounts may vary, the same types of awards are given at both 4-year and 2-year colleges.

  1. Scholarships and Grants – These awards are the best. They’re free money that never needs to be paid back. When offered, always accept Grants and Scholarships. 
  2. Subsidized Loan – If you need to take out a loan to finance your education, these are the ones you should use. Their main advantage is that the money you borrow does not accrue any interest while you’re in college, including if you continue on to graduate school. 
  3. Unsubsidized Loan – These loans do accrue interest and should only be used if absolutely necessary. For example, on a $10,000 Unsubsidized Loan with a standard 6.8% interest rate, the amount of interest that accrues per day is $1.86. Meaning after 4 years of college, you’ll owe over $12,750.
  4. Work-Study – Unlike the other awards, the student has to work for this money. However, the jobs are often very easy, giving the student time to study while at work. There’s nothing like getting paid to do your homework. Colleges don’t always offer these awards in their initial letter, so if you don’t see it listed, you can reach out to the college’s financial aid office and often they will update their offer.
Categories
Articles

SAT? ACT? IDK: What’s up with testing?

For decades colleges and universities have relied heavily on two tests to help them make their admissions decisions. For just as long, educators have argued that these tests don’t accurately reflect a student’s ability to be successful in college. Placing so much weight on a single standardized test has led students to ignore the activities that ARE indicators of future success like enrolling in challenging classes, having a job, or engaging in experiential learning opportunities so that they can spend a significant amount of time preparing for a test. 

Due to the pandemic, colleges in 2020 were forced to remove their testing requirements. This prompted the testing companies to implement some long-desired changes. The essays, arbitrary vocabulary sections, and point deductions for incorrect answers have been removed in favor of more reading and evidenced based questions, and options for taking the test remotely. 

Colleges have taken it a step further. Currently, there are nearly 1600 colleges and universities that have announced that they will continue to make testing optional, and the entire University of California system (including UCLA and UC Berkeley) have said that they will never again consider either the SAT or ACT as part of the application process. 

What does this mean for current high school students who are planning on college? One of my former colleagues at UC Berkeley noted, “Colleges are really starting to value students who take initiative and make an impact. They want to find students who are: 

  • Taking the most challenging classes at their high schools, especially the APs (Advanced Placement). 
  • Engaging in some sort of meaningful work outside of the classroom. That can be clubs, volunteering, internships, sports, or jobs. 
  • Making a positive impact on a community they are a part of, including but not limited to their town, school, or even their own household.”

While standardized testing will likely never go away totally, it is no longer recommended to spend hundreds of hours or thousands of dollars on test prep. Your time would be much better utilized by working to improve your grades, and finding an area outside of school that you’re passionate about and can become more involved in. 

If the college you’re applying to does still require the SAT, I would strongly recommend using Khan Academy’s test prep program. It was created in collaboration with the organization that oversees the SAT, it is absolutely free, and most importantly after taking their diagnostic exam, it tailors its questions to the specific needs of the student studying.

Categories
Articles

Colleges that Guarantee Affordability

Hormel Inspired Pathways has guaranteed that every student in the Hormel community has the opportunity to attend a 2-year community college tuition-free.

It is no secret that the cost of four-year colleges has skyrocketed over the last decade. Many of the most selective private schools now have a cost-of-attendance over $70,000, more than double the average full-time salary within the United States. Because of this, many students and families have all but given up on the idea of attending one of these colleges, even if the student is academically qualified.                        

Fortunately, some of the very best colleges and universities in the country are aware of this issue and have made a commitment to make their college affordable for any student capable of gaining admission. These schools, known as “Full-Need Met” colleges, are now telling students, ‘If you can get in, we guarantee that we will make sure you can afford to attend.

Each year more of the top colleges join this group, and now nearly 100 colleges and universities across the nation make this promise. Grinnell, Carleton, Macalester, and all of the Ivy League universities are just a few that have joined this group, guaranteeing they will work with families to ensure their school is affordable. 

Importantly, unlike many public universities and community colleges that have different tuition rates for in-state and out-of-state students, Full-Need Met colleges don’t make this distinction. It doesn’t matter if you live down the street or across the country from your dream school, if it is on the list and you get accepted, you’ll receive the same great financial aid package. 
To see the complete list of Full-Need Met colleges, visit www.HormelinspiredPathways.com and click the Resources tab at the top of the page.

Categories
Articles

Why Hormel Inspired Pathways?

Pre-college outreach programs significantly improve the likelihood of college enrollment for underrepresented students. In fact, research has shown that programs like Inspired Pathways almost double the odds that a student will enroll in college after they graduate from high school. However, only about 5 percent of at-risk students reported participating in such programs. 

“In addition to setting expectations and providing a financial pathway to college, these programs also aid in establishing a college-going culture within the community. Students hear the message that everyone is expected to plan for their futures beyond high school and to consider college as an option.” (Glaser & Warick, 2016, p.7).

Research indicates that there are four key features to effective college access programming and Inspired Pathways was designed to address each.

1. Help students navigate the college admissions process 

Helping students complete college applications and prepare for entrance exams are the most important predictors of enrollment. Programs with the strongest evidence for effectiveness, all include this component. (Horn & Chen, 1998)

The Hormel Inspired Pathways program is designed to teach students about each aspect of the college and financial aid process. Our program and workshops walk students through this process while also providing access to college admissions professionals if and when they have questions along the way.

2. Prepare students academically 

Access to a college preparatory curriculum while in high school is one of the most critical variables for helping students gain access to postsecondary education (Corwin, Colyar, & Tierney, 2005; Cabrera & La Nasa, 2001; Perna, 2000). 

The Inspired Pathways’ workshops discuss what colleges are looking for in applicants and how high schools students can gain access to the programs, courses, and experiences that will give them the best chance of being admitted into their top choice college. 

3. Provide support

Support is a predictor of college attendance and completion (Perna, 2000). Social support helps students see college as a realistic option. Students are more likely to plan to attend college if they are in an environment that promotes college enrollment. (Hossler, Schmit, & Vesper, 1999).

Inspired Pathways’ mentoring program provides students with a Hormel mentor, who works with their mentee to help them believe that college is in their future. Through instruction and support from the Inspired Pathways Director and advisors, mentors have all the tools they need to offer this crucial support. 

4. Involve and encourage parents/family 

Students with parents who are knowledgeable about college are more likely to attend college. Effective outreach programs address this predictor by involving parents and other family members, providing college information to parents, and teaching parents how to support their children’s education (Perna, 2002; Corwin et al., 2005; Swail & Perna, 2002). 

Inspired Pathways starts with the parents, fostering involvement from the beginning. Throughout the program, students and parents are asked to engage with our college planning workshops, and have the opportunity to work one-on-one with the Inspired Pathways Director and advisors.

Categories
News

Osceola Foods creates hope for families of students looking to further their education

December 31, 2020 | Osceola Sentinel-Tribune

A common way to lower the full cost of a college education is to get a two-year degree from a community college, then, continue to a college that offers a four-year degree.

One problem is that tuition for a two-year degree from a community college is still be too expensive for many families…

Categories
News

Hormel Foods Named one of America’s Most Responsible Companies by Newsweek for the Second Year in a Row

December 30, 2020 | Yahoo News

AUSTIN, Minn., Dec. 30, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Hormel Foods Corporation (NYSE: HRL), a global branded food company, was recently named of one America’s Most Responsible Companies by Newsweek magazine for the second year in a row. Hormel Foods was ranked No. 161 out of the top 400 companies recognized for their corporate responsibility performance…

Categories
Promise Programs

Wisconsin

State wide Programs

Badger Promise

available to first-generation Wisconsin students that transfer into the University of Wisconsin-Madison from a two-year Associate’s degree program. The Promise covers four semesters and can be used at University of Wisconsin-Madison for the general education requirements needed for an Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree. Students can attend college full or part time to receive the Promise.

For more information visit

financialaid.wisc.edu/types-ofaid/badger-promise

Contact information

Karla Weber, University Relations Specialist & Financial Aid

(608) 262-4942

karla.weber@wisc.edu

Bucky’s Tuition Promise

available to Wisconsin students from families making $58,000 or less. The Promise covers four or more semesters and can be used at University of Wisconsin-Madison for the general education requirements needed for an Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree.

For more information visit

financialaid.wisc.edu/types-of-aid/tuition-promise

Contact information

(608) 262-3060

Local Programs

Madison College Scholars of Promise

Available to graduates from an MATC high school with a minimum junior year GPA of 2.25 and an estimated family contribution of $5,486 or less. The Promise covers 91 four or more semesters and can be used at Madison Area Technical College for a vocational award. Additionally, the Promise provides support including mentoring. Must enroll full time to receive Promise.

For more information visit

madisoncollege.edu/scholars-of-promise

Contact information

(608) 246-6036

ScholarsofPromise@madisoncollege.edu 

Parkside Promise Plus

Available to Wisconsin high school graduates who have a minimum GPA of 2.5 and an expected family contribution of $1,500 or less. The Promise covers four or more semesters and can be used at University of Wisconsin-Parkside for the general education requirements needed for an Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree. Additionally, the Promise provides support including counseling, mentoring, and summer orientation. Must enroll full time to receive Promise.

For more information visit

uwp.edu/apply/promise.cfm

Contact information

(262) 595-2355

promise@uwp.edu

Categories
Promise Programs

Pennsylvania

State wide Programs

Give Something Back Foundation
(Pennsylvania Scholars)

Available to Pennsylvania residents who are Pell-eligible and have a minimum 3.0 GPA. Students must enroll in ninth grade by attending an information session, completing the College Cost Estimator, attending a Turn Back Night, and completing the online application. The Promise covers four or more semesters and can be used at Williamson College of the Trades or West Chester University or a vocational award or for the general education requirements needed for an Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree. Additionally, the Promise provides support including textbook vouchers, housing assistance, career services, financial education, mentoring, and counseling. Must enroll full time to receive the Promise.

For more information visit

giveback.ngo/pennsylvania-scholars

Contact Information

(888) 383-9877

PAinfo@giveback.ngo

The Octavius Catto Scholarship

Available to first-time, full-time college students of the Community College of Philadelphia who are graduates of a Philadelphia high school, PA cyber charter, or homeschool program, and were Philadelphia residents for at least 12 months. Students must complete the FAFSA and document an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) below $8,000, as well as meet predetermined college readiness requirements. The Promise provides last-dollar funding for up to three years for a vocational award or for the general education requirements needed for an Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree. Additionally, the Promise provides various academic resources and services, such as support toward the cost of books, food, transportation, career coaches and advisors, and connection to existing resources like affordable housing, childcare, and other services.

For more information visit

https://www.ccp.edu/catto

Contact Information

(215) 751-8000

Local Programs

Pittsburgh Promise

available to students who are enrolled in a Pittsburgh Public School, or one of its charters, continuously, since at least the beginning of ninth grade. They must be residents of the City of Pittsburgh, continuously since at least the beginning of ninth grade, must maintain a minimum of 2.5 GPA, and a minimum attendance record of 90%. If students have a GPA of 2.0-2.49 and thus do not meet the GPA requirement, they are eligible to enroll in The Promise Extension Program at CCAC. There, they must complete nine credits per semester and maintain at least a 2.0 GPA. Students who complete a full year in the Extension Program become fully Promise eligible. The Promise covers four or more semesters and can be used at any accredited college, university, or trade and technical school in Pennsylvania for a vocational award or for the general education requirements needed for an Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree. Additionally, the Promise provides support in career services and books.
For more information visit

pittsburghpromise.org

Contact information

(412) 281-7605

info@pittsburghpromise.org

Categories
Promise Programs

Minnesota

State wide Programs

University of Minnesota Promise Scholarship (U Promise)

Available to Minnesota residents with family incomes below $120,000. The Promise covers four or more semesters and can be used at University of Minnesota for the general education requirements needed for a Bachelor’s degree. Must enroll full time to receive the Promise.

For more information visit

upromise.umn.edu

Contact the appropriate UM campus:

Crookston

umc-fa@umn.edu

(800) 862-6466

Duluth

(800) 232-1339

Morris

(888) 866-3382

Rochester

(507) 258-8457

Twin Cities

onestop@umn.edu

(612) 624-1111

Local

Austin Assurance Scholarship

The Hormel Foundation Austin Assurance Scholarship is an opportunity for graduates of Austin Public Schools and Pacelli Catholic Schools working towards an approved program of study at Riverland Community College. Students can use this opportunity for up to 5 years after graduating from high school. Students must be a resident of the Austin Publics Schools district and meet certain academic criteria in order to qualify for the scholarship. This scholarship covers the cost of tuition and fees of up to 65 credits, and includes a stipend for needed books and materials. The scholarship amount will vary for each student and will pay for up to 100% of tuition and fees that are not funded by federal grants, state grants, or other scholarship funds.

For more information visit

austinassurance.org

Contact information

Katelyn Flatness, Riverland CC

Academic Advisor for The Hormel Foundation Austin Assurance Scholarship

(507) 433-0636

katelyn.flatness@riverland.edu 

The Power of YOU (POY)

Available to financial aid-eligible graduates of Saint Paul or Minneapolis public schools, Brooklyn Center Secondary, Columbia Heights High School, Henry Sibley High School, Richfield High School, Robbinsdale Cooper High School, Roseville Area High School, Simley High School, South St. Paul Secondary, or Woodbury High School who meet income requirements and take the Accuplacer. The Promise covers four semesters and can be used at Saint Paul College or Minneapolis Community and Technical College for a vocational award or for the general education requirements needed for an Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree. Additionally, the Promise provides supports including career services, counseling and mentoring and has a privately funded incentive program assists students with the cost of books, transportation, meal cards and personal emergency use. Students must apply in their senior year of high school and must enroll full time to receive the Promise.

For more information visit

saintpaul.edu/admissions/power-of-you-program

Contact information

Sarah Butler, Program Director

(651) 846- 1325

sarah.butler@saintpaul.edu

You can also visit

minneapolis.edu/admissions/poweryou-poy

Contact Information

Arcelle Taylor, The Power of YOU Director

(612) 659-6171

powerofyou@minneapolis.edu

Categories
Promise Programs

Kansas

State wide programs

Mallouk Give Back Scholarship (Kansas Scholars)

Available to students who have faced adverse challenges during their youth—such as the incarceration of a parent, homelessness, or foster care. Students must enroll in ninth grade by attending an information session, completing the College Cost Estimator, attending a Turn Back Night, and completing the online application. The Promise is available for four or more semesters and can be used at Kansas State University, Pittsburg State University, Wichita State University, or Baker University for a vocational award or for the general education requirements needed for an Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree. Additionally, the Promise provides support including textbook vouchers, transportation benefits, food assistance, housing assistance, career services, mentoring, and counseling. Must enroll full time to receive the Promise.

For more information visit

giveback.ngo/petermallouk/kansas-scholars/

Contact information

(888) 383-9877

KSinfo@giveback.ngo