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October Edition of Your Bottom Line Now Available

The Oklahoma College Assistance Program and Oklahoma Money Matters presents the October edition of Your Bottom Line, a monthly newsletter produced with personal finance organizations, educators and consumers in mind.

Read the current edition.




The FAFSA is Here!

The 2020-21 FAFSA is here! Here are a few tips you can share with your students.

This year students can access the FAFSA by visiting FAFSA.gov  or  by using the myStudentAid mobile app. The FAFSA should be completed as soon as possible after Oct. 1 to ensure priority consideration for some types of financial aid. It’s best to gather all necessary materials before starting the FAFSA. Since the 2020-21 FAFSA allows applicants to use 2018 tax information, families can use their 2018 return to complete the application right away! There's no need to wait.

To complete and submit the FAFSA online, students and one of their parents/guardians will each need to create an FSA ID (Federal Student Aid ID) at FSAID.ed.gov . This username/password serves as an electronic signature on the FAFSA and certain student loan applications, and allows them to access other federal student aid websites. It’s beneficial for families to create their FSA IDs before starting the FAFSA to speed up the application process. Visit UCanGo2.org to download an FSA ID Worksheet (in English and Spanish) to keep track of your information.

For more information and FAFSA resources, including educational tools and tutorial videos in English and Spanish, visit StartWithFAFSA.org.

 


 

Free ICAP Tools Available at OKcollegestart.org

Beginning with the freshman class in the fall of 2019, every student attending public high school in Oklahoma is required to complete an Individual Career Academic Plan (ICAP) as a graduation requirement. Throughout the ICAP process, students will learn about themselves, explore careers and build a plan for life after high school.

While state law requires every student to complete career and college interest surveys; update written postsecondary and workforce goals annually; take an intentional sequence of courses in high school that reflects their postsecondary goals; track academic progress through college readiness tests, concurrent enrollment and career certifications; and participate in servicelearning or work environments, ICAPs will go well beyond these requirements.

OKcollegestart.org is one of the free online platforms school districts may use to facilitate ICAP efforts in their schools. OKcollegestart includes an ICAP feature that allows educators to customize the activities students complete on the website as part of the ICAP process. As students complete activities on OKcollegestart.org, educators can track student progress in the Professional Center. Parents may also create OKcollegestart accounts to see the work their students are doing.

In addition to regional training workshops this fall, educators can schedule one-on-one online meetings to receive assistance as they plan, implement and track their students’ ICAPs. “We know educators are eager to learn how to make the most of OKcollegestart as they implement ICAP. We’re excited to offer nine workshops across the state this fall to meet their needs,” said Theresa Shaklee, student portal coordinator for the Oklahoma College Assistance Program. “The work students do during the ICAP process will help prepare them for life after high school. Students coming into the higher education system will have a better understanding of what their career and education options are and a stronger sense of the direction they’re headed.”

OKcollegestart.org provides free resources to help students and parents plan, apply and pay for education and training beyond high school. All user registrations come with a free email address that can be used to communicate with counselors and colleges. The dynamic Professional Center, a website for Oklahoma schools to use in conjunction with OKcollegestart.org, allows counselors to send transcripts from high school to high school and from high school to college, follow student activities on OKcollegestart.org and customize academic plans for individual students.






Meet the New OKMM Team Members!

Oklahoma Money Matters is excited to introduce its two new Outreach Specialists, Sara Lorenzen and Rae Scott-Pettit. Sara and Rae bring new energy and a fresh perspective to OKMM, and we believe you'll enjoy working alongside them in your financial education efforts.

Sara Lorenzen

Sara Lorenzen Headshot.Sara Lorenzen came to OKMM from the nonprofit sector with more than 10 years of experience in public relations, communications, outreach and client relationship management. She earned a bachelor's of arts in public relations and master's of education in adult education from the University of Central Oklahoma. As one of OKMM’s outreach specialists, Sara provides financial literacy education for high school and college students, adult learners on college campuses, workforce and TANF programs and community partners, as well as workplace education.






Rae Scott-Pettit

Rae Scott-Pettit headshot.Rae Scott-Pettit joined the OKMM team after completing 15 years of service in the federal government and teaching Spanish language and cultures to middle school students in Texas. Rae is passionate about advocating for various underrepresented groups, especially those with disabilities. She’s volunteered her time with the Developmental Disabilities Council of Oklahoma and is a graduate of their Partners in Policymaking program. In her position with OKMM, Rae provides financial literacy education to adult learners on college campuses, workforce and TANF programs and community partners, and workplace education. She is bilingual and shares OKMM’s message with our Spanish-speaking population.






College App Week 2019: What You Need to Know

Objective

CAW 2019 is a nationwide effort to encourage and assist students as they navigate the college application process, thereby increasing college enrollments and bolstering success for all who dream of pursuing higher education. Listen to what counselors had to say about previous CAWs:

Video still from CAW 2017 video for educators.

If you’re unable to schedule a whole week for this event, focus on scheduling one or two days for your seniors to have access to school computers in order to complete their online college applications.

Video still from CAW 2017 video for students.

Dates

Oklahoma’s CAW will be held September 23-27, 2019.

CAW 2019 logo with dates, September 23 through 27.

Can’t do it then? Just schedule your CAW for any week this fall through the month of November. You can tell us the week you’ve chosen when you register your school, and we’ll send you posters and an "I Applied" sticker for every participating senior.

Register Now button.

Resources

Visit OKCollegeAppWeek.org to find all of the great resources you need to help you get started.

Event Coordinator Packet
Student Packet
Volunteer Packet

 



 

OKcollegestart.org Spring Workshops

OKcollegestart.org, the State Regents’ student portal for college planning, hosted four training workshops this spring to instruct educators on ways to use OKcollegestart. org to implement Individual Career Academic Plans (ICAPs) in their schools. High school counselors, whether new or experienced, were encouraged to attend. These workshops were held at the State Regents’ office and on the campuses of Oklahoma State University-Tulsa, Eastern Oklahoma State College in McAlester and Northwestern Oklahoma State University in Enid.

Participants received hands-on support as they selected ICAP activities, customized and assigned an ICAP to their students, and learned to track student progress and identify how to use activity outcomes in advising.

“Educators across the state are preparing to implement Individual Career Academic Plans in their schools this fall, so it was important we help them prepare,” said Theresa Shaklee, student portal coordinator for the Oklahoma College Assistance Program. “We’re excited to be a part of the college and career readiness process on which their students are embarking.”

Participants also learned about new OKcollegestart.org features, including a redesigned Professional Center and customizable surveys.

OKcollegestart.org provides free resources to help students and parents plan, apply and pay for education and training beyond high school. All user registrations come with a free email address that can be used to communicate with counselors and colleges. The dynamic Professional Center, a website for Oklahoma schools to use in conjunction with OKcollegestart.org, allows counselors to send transcripts from high school to high school and from high school to college, follow student activities on OKcollegestart.org and customize academic plans for individual students.




Inaugural Oklahoma College Access Conference Held

People surrounding and drawing on a blackboard table reading college access.The Oklahoma College Assistance Program’s (OCAP) Outreach Team held the inaugural College Access Conference on Feb. 6. Held at Oklahoma City Community College, the free conference was designed to deliver vital information to the counselors, educators and community partners that OCAP Outreach works with on a daily basis.

OCAP’s goal was to share best practices and updated information to professionals who have daily contact with students. Over 70 professionals attended.

Some of the topics covered at the conference included what college admissions specialists look for in potential students, finding and applying for scholarships, assisting underserved students and working with Individual Career Academic Plans (ICAPs).

“With the growing necessity for a college education to match the future job market and the implementation of ICAPs in all schools this coming fall, we felt this would be a great time to offer assistance and guidance to our schools,” said OCAP Assistant Director for Outreach Services Kelli Kelnar. “We had a full house with lots of interaction, participation and overall appreciation. Our first College Access Conference was a great success.”

OCAP’s Outreach Team is excited to continue hosting the conference annually. “We received a lot of positive feedback from our attendees, a diverse group of professionals including K-12 counselors and administrators, Upward Bound/ TRiO personnel, financial literacy specialists and other community partners,” said Kelnar. “We plan to continue growing this conference to become the premier college access event in the state.”

Increasing college access is the primary objective of UCanGo2, OCAP’s comprehensive college access outreach initiative. OCAP, an operating division of the State Regents, provides college access, aid awareness, financial literacy and student loan management programs and services that benefit students, parents, schools and community partners. To learn more, visit OCAP.org and UCanGo2. org, like UCanGo2 on Facebook and join OCAP’s mailing lists at ocap.org/News/subscribe.shtml.




Freshman Orientation: Financial Literacy Supports Student Success

Pop art image of two college students and the words, Your new students will face a variety of challenges during their college career, including important financial decisions that could follow them for years to come. Incorporating a personal money management session into your orientation program and seminar classes can help students make smart financial choices, which can boost retention at your campus.

Oklahoma Money Matters (OKMM) is the financial literacy initiative of the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education and the Oklahoma College Assistance Program. The OKMM team cares about your students’ success. If you’re ready to add financial education to your orientation efforts, consider partnering with OKMM.

For 15 years, OKMM has delivered quality financial education to students attending Oklahoma’s colleges and universities. We teach students about living on a college budget, the value of saving money, understanding credit, preventing identity theft and managing student loans and financial aid. Our services are free and our program allows you to choose resource options that best meet your students’ needs. Choose from customizable presentations, online learning modules, downloadable lesson plans and activities and accessible tools, including an interactive budget calculator and online resource clearinghouse.

If you would rather do the teaching yourself, we can help with that, too. OKMM offers free train-the-trainer sessions and complementary publications to empower your staff or campus leaders to convey key financial education messages.

If you’re ready to talk about how OKMM can help your students improve their money management skills, contact Kelli Kelnar at 405.234.4313 or kkelnar@ocap.org. Workshops are subject to staff availability, so schedule yours today!






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:: Our Website Network ::


OK-CAN     UCanGo2.org

ReadySetRepay.org           OklahomaMoneyMatters.org

OKcollegestart.org      StartWithFAFSA.org