Skip to main content

Watching First-Gens Navigate Financial Aid

This past week, I spent much of my "free time" at school working with two students to ensure they have everything necessary submitted to the university they plan to attend this fall.

I was a first-generation college student. So are these young men.

So it came as no surprise when a few weeks went by and they hadn't followed up with me. One hadn't checked his email to notice a respond from the Office of Financial Aid to let him know that he needed to submit additional documentation.

Other had been so consumed with life (I remember my own senior year when I was so involved in other activities that I forgot to turn in any of the local scholarship applications) that I didn't focus on anything beyond high school.

So I spent a little time tracking these guys down, sending reminder texts like, "Paperwork. ASAP," and then following up in person.

It was during this process that I also had the chance to watch a young man interact on the phone with the financial aid office. I saw him struggle to explain who he is and his situation. He and I were in the same boat when it came to knowing what paperwork to actually submit, but this conversation was the first time had had ever called a "real place" (his words, not mine) and asked questions or advocated for himself.

This came as a shock. He then started listing off the things that he would have to worry about and take ownership of after high school. I could tell that he became a little scared.

Since then, I keep having these moments where I think about what high school used to be like. It was understood that after graduation, you didn't come back for a while. For these guys, I worry. If they don't stay in contact with their mentors--mentors who played an important role in helping them navigate their initial steps into post-secondary education--will they be as successful as they could be?

Comments

  1. This is true that financial aid always help students to cover their expenses and perform well in their class. However, all depends on students too as they should look for an institution where they may get best quality education as well as financial aid. Similarly, there are some dissertation writing service providers that organize different contests to provide students financial aids.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Knowledgeable information shared by you. There are various advantages of education, and it’s up to you to take full advantage of the opportunity. Find best Maths Tuition In Adelaide at Tutors SA.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Targets and Time

I just finished Cris Tovani and Elizabeth Birr Moje's No More Telling as Teaching: Less Lecture, More Engaged Learning from Heinemann's Not This But That series edited by Ellin Oliver Keene and Nell Duke.

Needless to say, I pick up anything that's by Tovani and Moje because of Tovani's belief in the workshop model and Moje's extensive work in both disciplinary and out of school literacies.

After finishing this quick read, I've been thinking a lot about two things.

First, how we spend our time matters. I get less than 60 minutes with students each hour. Time is a hot commodity! Because of that, I am constantly looking at ways to maximize instruction. If I pass papers back this way or if I move this to this point in time, I can gain another minute. And those minutes add up! Sometimes, however, it feels like there is just never enough time. All teachers know that. In fact, I've yet to meet a teacher admit that she or he has too much time with students, especia…

Letter to the Editor Regarding DeVos

***Update:  At the time this letter was read at Monday’s board meeting, the hearing regarding Betsy DeVos’ nomination as the secretary of education was still scheduled for Wednesday, January 11. Later that evening, the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions postponed the hearing until January 17 at 5:00 PM.

This is a letter to the editor that I will submit for the January 12 edition of the Belleville-Area Independent
-----
To the Editor:
This week marks a defining moment for public education in the United States. On Wednesday, January 11, a hearing will have taken place regarding Betsy DeVos’ nomination as the secretary of education.
During the past few board meetings, I have expressed my concerns publicly about Mrs. DeVos’ appointment to the top education post, and I reiterate those same concerns here. I have contacted Senator Stabenow and Peter’s offices, and they both have now expressed their concerns regarding this appointment and have vowed to…

Stop Ignoring Research

I just finished Kylene Beers and Robert Probst's Disrupting Thinking. I keep thinking about page 103 in the text, where they discuss the idea of "research-based practices" and how many of us "are willing to ignore what we know from research." They mention teaching grammar in isolation, spelling lists, lack of conferring in writing classrooms, monologic talk, prescribing novels without choice--the list goes on and on. I get frustrated because I hear from other teachers often excuses for why they do these things. And even I have felt forced to resort to some of these practices at times because it's what kids have been conditioned to expect at school. It is amazing how quiet a classroom can be when you give every student a worksheet. And if compliance is our end goal, then a worksheet works. But if we want students to undertake meaningful work that's often the work supported by best practices, we're going to have to be willing to get a whole lot more u…