OCTAE Connection Flash Edition - June 21, 2019

Octae Connection

OCTAE Connection Flash Edition

June 21, 2019

Deadline Extended – MentorLinks: Advancing Technological Education

The American Association of Community Colleges is pleased to announce a national grant competition for the MentorLinks: Advancing Technological Education program, developed with the support of the National Science Foundation. MentorLinks is designed for community colleges seeking to improve technician education programs in the science, technology, engineering, or mathematics fields. Colleges should be interested in working with an experienced community college mentor who has successfully planned and implemented a major change in a high-technology program.

MentorLinks colleges will receive $20,000 for the two-year grant period and travel support for the project director to attend three project meetings. The grant’s primary emphasis is on valuable networking, and rich opportunities for technical assistance and professional development. The grant period runs Oct. 1, 2019–Nov. 30, 2021. The deadline for applications has been extended to June 24, 2019. To submit your MentorLinks College proposal, please click here.

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Second Chance Pell Pilot Program Expanded

Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos announced on Monday, May 20, that the Department of Education will expand the Second Chance Pell experiment by allowing new cohorts of colleges and universities to participate.

“We are eager to expand the Second Chance Pell experiment, which has shown significant promise,” said Secretary DeVos. “We hope that through this expansion, we can reach more students and utilize the information gathered to better inform Congress about future updates to the Higher Education Act.”

This experiment provides need-based Pell Grants to individuals incarcerated in state and federal prisons so that they can enroll in postsecondary programs offered by local colleges and universities. Currently, there are 64 schools in 26 states participating in this experiment. In 2015, more than 200 schools submitted applications seeking to participate. The goal is to give more institutions a chance to participate.

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Reminder: U.S. Department of Education and the American Association of Community Colleges Cohosting Rural Community College Grant Application Convenings

This summer, the U.S. Department of Education and the American Association of Community Colleges will be cohosting a series of convenings designed to help rural community colleges identify, plan, and design projects for federal grant applications. They will be called Rural Community College Grant Application Convenings. Activities will include facilitated workshops and information from federal agencies with upcoming grant opportunities.

The next convening will be offered on the date and location below. The registration link has a draft agenda, information about local hotels, and other resources:

  • Sept. 12–13 at Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College, Biloxi, Mississippi

           Register here.

Please address any questions or comments to Erin Berg, community college program specialist, at erin.berg@ed.gov or 202-245-6792.

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Best Practices for Financial Education at Institutions of Higher Education

On June 14, 2019 the U.S. Department of the Treasury released a report on behalf of the Financial Literacy and Education Commission (FLEC).  The report, Best Practices for Financial Literacy and Education at Institutions of Higher Education, provides recommendations for higher education institutions to deliver effective financial literacy education and resources to help students make informed decisions and avoid pitfalls associated with financing education.

“It is vital for our higher education institutions to offer students the resources and information they need to make financial decisions that best fit their needs and career aspirations,” said Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin. “I am proud of the FLEC’s work and its thorough report, which is a great guide for colleges and universities to help them improve their students’ financial outcomes.”

Upon passage of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (S.2155) in May 2018, FLEC was required to establish best practices for institutions of higher education to teach financial literacy skills and provide information to assist in making decisions related to student borrowing. By improving consistency and transparency related to the cost of financing education and promoting greater financial capability, institutions of higher education can empower students and their families to make the best financial decisions possible.

To reach their findings, the Treasury Department and the Department of Education, as well as other FLEC agency members, thoroughly reviewed research on financial education and consulted with a broad array of experts, practitioner, and stakeholders.

The full analysis and complete list of recommendations can be found in the report.

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