Missouri Department of Higher Education http://dhe.mo.gov/news/rss.xml Official news releases issued by the Missouri Department of Higher Education. en-us <![CDATA[ College Application Week expanded to 57 Missouri high schools]]>A new program aimed at increasing access to higher education will assist students at 57 Missouri high schools with the college application process. Missouri College Application Week, sponsored by the Department of Higher Education, is set for Oct. 20-24.

Volunteers with college advising and admissions experience will work one-on-one with students to help them complete applications for higher education institutions they are interested in attending. The goal of the program is to increase the number of applications submitted by Missouri students - especially low-income students and those who would be the first in their families to attend college.

"During College Application Week the spotlight is on helping students who aspire to go to college but are intimidated by the application process or feel overwhelmed by the choices available to them," said David Russell, Missouri commissioner of higher education. "The program also helps students better understand the benefits of higher education and the importance of making college plans now."  

The expanded program follows a successful pilot project at 26 high schools in 2013. More than 2,000 students submitted approximately 3,600 applications to 259 higher education institutions. Organizers hope to double those numbers this year.

Participating high schools provide time and resources during the school day for all seniors interested in completing college applications. In addition, many of the high schools host assemblies and offer individual college advising to provide students with information about higher education opportunities.

"By 2018, approximately 60 percent of all jobs in Missouri will require some form of postsecondary education," Russell said. "Currently only about 46 percent of working age Missourians have a college degree or certificate. We want that number to be closer to 60 percent by 2025 to ensure that our state has the educated workforce needed to sustain a strong economy."

For more information about Missouri College Application Week, visit dhe.mo.gov/ppc/students/CollegeApplicationWeek.php.

 

High schools participating in Missouri College Application Week include:

 

Central Missouri:

Eldon High School

Moberly High School

Warrensburg High School

 

Kansas City area:

African-Centered Prep Academy

Center High School

Central Academy of Excellence

East High School

Fort Osage High School

North Kansas City High School

Northeast High School

Paseo Academy

Raytown High School

Raytown South High School

Ruskin Senior High School

Southwest Early College Campus

Van Horn High School

Winnetonka High School

 

Northeast Missouri:

South Shelby High School, Shelbina 

 

South Central Missouri:

Dixon High School

Lebanon High School

Rolla High School

Salem High School

St. Clair High School

St. James High School

Sullivan High School

West Plains High School

 

Southeast Missouri:

Cape Girardeau Central High

Caruthersville High School

Central High School, New Madrid

Charleston High School

Dexter High School

Hayti High School

Jackson Senior High School

Kennett High School

Malden High School

Poplar Bluff High School

Potosi High School

Scott County Central High School

Senath-Hornersville Senior High School

Sikeston Senior High School

South Iron R-I High School

 

Southwest Missouri

Hillcrest High School, Springfield

Parkview High School, Springfield

 

St. Louis area:

Bayless High School

Carnahan School of the Future

Gateway STEM High School

Hancock High School

Hazelwood East High School

Jennings High School

McCluer High School

McCluer South-Berkeley High School

Normandy High School

Pattonville High School

Ritenour High School

Riverview Gardens High School

Roosevelt High School

Soldan International Studies

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EDUCATIONWed, 08 Oct 2014 16:14:36 CST
<![CDATA[ Missouri's student loan default rate declines, remains below national average]]>The percentage of Missourians defaulting on their student loans is declining and remains well below the national average.

Recent figures released by the U.S. Department of Education show that Missouri’s three-year default rate dropped 0.5 percent, from 13.1 percent in 2010 to 12.6 percent in 2011.

The national student loan default rate also decreased – from 14.7 percent to 13.7 percent – during the same time period.

“We are pleased to see Missouri’s default rate on the decline,” said David Russell, Missouri commissioner of higher education. “Efforts to help students make smart financial decisions clearly are paying off.”

Russell pointed to the Missouri Department of Higher Education’s Default Prevention Grant Program as one way the department is working to reduce student loan default rates and promote choices that can help lead students to a more secure financial future.

The default prevention grants provide funding to higher education institutions for student-focused financial literacy programs.

 “Missouri institutions are using these grants to educate student borrowers about the importance of minimizing their debt, following a budget and repaying their loans,” Russell said.

Nearly one quarter of the institutions participating in the grant program during 2011 had a default rate at or below 10 percent; more than 40 percent had a default rate below 15 percent.

The information released by the U.S. Department of Education reported default rates for borrowers whose first loan repayment came due between Oct. 1, 2010, and Sept. 30, 2011, and who defaulted on their loans before Sept. 30, 2013. Nationally, more than 4.7 million borrowers began student loan repayment during that time.

Missouri’s student loan default rate was lower than most surrounding states, including Arkansas (15.8 percent), Illinois (13.1 percent), Iowa (17.3 percent), Kentucky (17.5 percent) and Oklahoma (15.7 percent). Only two neighboring states posted lower default rates – Kansas (11.1 percent) and Nebraska (7.7 percent). Nearly 99,000 Missourians were repaying student loans during the reporting period. Just over 12,500 borrowers defaulted on their loans.

In addition to the Default Prevention Grant Program, the Missouri Department of Higher Education promotes financial literacy through publications and presentations for students and their families. For more information about the department’s programs, visit http://dhe.mo.gov/ppc/studentloans/financialliteracy.php.

 

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EDUCATIONFri, 03 Oct 2014 11:24:39 CST
<![CDATA[ Improving Teacher Quality Grant letters due Oct. 24, applications due Dec. 31]]>The Missouri Department of Higher Education is accepting grant proposals for projects that provide teachers and administrators with professional development aimed at increasing student academic achievement in science and math.

A letter of intent to apply for the Cycle 13 Improving Teacher Quality Grant is due by Oct. 24. The completed application is due Dec. 31. The request for proposals can be obtained on the department's website at http://dhe.mo.gov/ppc/grants/teacherquality.php.

The purpose of the grant program is to increase the academic achievement of students by helping schools and districts improve K-12 teacher and administrator quality.

For Cycle 13, approximately $650,000 will be available for new projects. Grant amounts generally range from $70,000 to $300,000 per project, depending on the number of participants and the extent and quality of the professional development provided by each project. Cycle 13 funds will be used to improve math, science and literacy achievement in high-need school districts, targeting all grade levels, kindergarten through grade 12.

The grant program is funded by and operates under the federal legislation known as the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001. It is the largest federal initiative that supports professional development projects for teachers and principals, with a focus on high-need school districts and higher education institutions. The legislation provides funds for state education agencies, local education agencies and state agencies for higher education.

A technical workshop for potential grant applicants will be held Oct. 24 in Jefferson City. For more information and to register for the workshop, contact the grant administrator, Liz Valentine, at elizabeth.valentine@dhe.mo.gov or go to http://dhe.mo.gov/ppc/grants/documents/TechnicalAssistanceWorkshop.pdf.

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EDUCATIONMon, 29 Sep 2014 09:35:04 CST
<![CDATA[ Missouri launching new program to help more students earn two-year degrees]]>Missouri’s newest program to increase the number of students earning a college degree will be launched statewide Tuesday, Sept. 16, in Jefferson City. More than 100 higher education officials from colleges and universities across the state are expected to attend the rollout of the Missouri Reverse Transfer program.

After a successful year-long pilot project, the program is being expanded to include all public colleges and universities and participating independent higher education institutions in Missouri. During the pilot project, 50 students received associate degrees.

The program allows students who have earned at least 15 transferable credit hours at a qualifying two-year college and have transferred to a four-year college or university to transfer hours back to the two-year college to receive an associate degree.

“Earning an associate degree can provide students with more job opportunities and higher pay and pave the way for continuing their education,” said David Russell, Missouri commissioner of higher education.

Legislation calling for Missouri to create a reverse transfer program was approved by the General Assembly in 2012. A steering committee of officials from higher education institutions in the state worked together to create the program and conduct the pilot, which paired up two- and four-year colleges and universities.

Speakers for the rollout event include Rep. Mike Thompson, one of the sponsors of the legislation that established the Missouri Reverse Transfer program, and Russell. Several students who earned associate degrees during the pilot program also will attend the event.

“Establishing the Reverse Transfer program required unprecedented collaboration among the state’s two- and four-year colleges and universities,” Russell said. “This type of collaboration benefits Missouri students and our higher education system.”

 Colleges and universities that were paired up for the pilot program include:

·         Columbia College and Moberly Area Community College

·         Missouri State University and Missouri State University–West Plains

·         Missouri State University and Ozarks Technical Community College

·         Missouri Western State University and Metropolitan Community College

·         Missouri Western State University and North Central Missouri College

·         Northwest Missouri State University and Metropolitan Community College

·         University of Missouri (Columbia) and Moberly Area Community College

·         University of Missouri–St. Louis and St. Louis Community College

The Reverse Transfer program is one way the Department of Higher Education is working to help increase the percentage of Missourians with a degree. The department has set a goal – Missouri’s Big Goal for Higher Education, which calls for 60 percent of the adult working-age population to have a two- or four-year degree or professional certificate by the year 2025.

For more information about the Missouri Reverse Transfer program, visit http://dhe.mo.gov/MOReverseTransfer.php.

 

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 Note to media: The Missouri Reverse Transfer program launch will be held from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 16, at Capitol Plaza Hotel in Jefferson City. If you would like to attend the event, please contact Liz Coleman at liz.coleman@dhe.mo.gov or 573-522-1463.

 

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EDUCATIONFri, 12 Sep 2014 14:12:56 CST
<![CDATA[ Grants aim to reduce Missouri's student loan default rates]]>More than 30 colleges and universities in Missouri will receive grants totaling over $820,000 to promote financial literacy and help prevent students from defaulting on their student loans.

The Missouri Department of Higher Education awarded funds to 31 schools through the Default Prevention Grant Program. Now in its 14th year, the program provides grants to higher education institutions to launch initiatives designed to help students live within their means, make smart choices about money management and create a plan for a secure financial future. The maximum grant amount is $25,000 per year.

 “This grant equips financial aid officers with extra tools to help students understand how important it is to make it through college without overextending themselves financially,” said Marilyn Landrum, a student assistance officer at the department.  “We know college is more important today than ever before, and the rising costs of higher education make the default prevention program imperative to the future.”

 Due to the efforts of participating institutions and the department, Missouri’s student loan default rate remains below the national average. The state’s default rate is 13.1 percent, compared to the national average of 14.7 percent.

 The department also provides default prevention training, which is available to all higher education institutions in Missouri.

To learn more about default prevention or to schedule a training, visit http://dhe.mo.gov/ppc/studentloans/defaultprevgrant.php, or contact Marilyn Landrum at Marilyn.Landrum@dhe.mo.gov or Sarah Schedler at Sarah.Schedler@dhe.mo.gov.

The following higher education institutions received a default prevention grant for the 2014-2015 academic year:

  • Avila University
  • Cape Girardeau Career & Technology Center
  • Columbia College
  • Cox College
  • Drury University
  • East Central College
  • Eden Theological Seminary
  • Elaine Steven Beauty College
  • Forest Institute of Professional Psychology
  • Franklin Technology Center
  • Harris-Stowe State University
  • Jefferson College
  • Kirksville Area Technical College
  • Lincoln University
  • Metropolitan Community College
  • Mineral Area College
  • Missouri Southern State University
  • Missouri State University
  • Missouri University of Science and Technology
  • Missouri Valley College
  • Missouri Western State University
  • Moberly Area Community College
  • Nazarene Theological Seminary
  • North Central Missouri College
  • Southeast Missouri State University
  • State Fair Community College
  • State Technical College of Missouri
  • St. Charles Community College
  • Stephens College
  • University of Missouri-Columbia
  • Webster University
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EDUCATIONTue, 05 Aug 2014 13:47:55 CST
<![CDATA[ Bright Flight Scholarship to be fully funded for Missouri's top-scoring students]]>Missouri’s Bright Flight Scholarship will be fully funded for the state’s top-scoring students this year for the first time since the 2009-2010 academic year.

 

Students receiving the Missouri Higher Education Academic Scholarship, commonly known as Bright Flight, will see a $500 increase in the scholarship amount for the 2014-2015 academic year. Students who score in the top 3 percent on the ACT or SAT test are eligible to receive $3,000 – the maximum scholarship amount – to attend a qualifying Missouri college or university.

 

The scholarship awards vary from year to year based on funding approved by the Missouri General Assembly. Last year’s scholarship award was $2,500.

 

To qualify for the scholarship, a student must be a Missouri resident, earn a composite ACT score of 31 or higher or a score of 800 in both critical reading and math on the SAT, and enroll at an approved postsecondary school for the academic year immediately following high school graduation.

Although the scholarship is being fully funded this year for the top tier of students, funds are not available for students scoring in the top 4th and 5th percentiles on the ACT and SAT. Legislation approved in 2007 expanded the scholarship to include students in the top 4th and 5th percentiles, but revisions enacted in 2010 require the top 3 percent to receive the full scholarship amount before funding those in the top 4th and 5th percentile. Funding still remains inadequate to make awards to these additional students.

 

Approximately 6,100 students are expected to receive the Bright Flight Scholarship this fall. Students can renew the scholarship annually for up to 10 semesters or until they receive a bachelor’s degree if they meet eligibility requirements that include maintaining a 2.5 cumulative grade point average.

 

The Bright Flight Scholarship program was established in 1986 to encourage top-ranking high school seniors to continue their education in Missouri.

 

For more information about the Bright Flight Scholarship, visit http://dhe.mo.gov/ppc/grants/brightflight.php.

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EDUCATIONFri, 11 Jul 2014 10:49:41 CST
<![CDATA[ Missouri's college 'transfer library' surpasses required 25 courses]]>Six more courses have been added to Missouri's new "transfer course library" to assist students with the transfer of specific courses at all public colleges and universities in the state.

The additional courses, approved last week by the Missouri Coordinating Board for Higher Education, brings the current number of courses in the library to 26, surpassing the minimum 25 courses required by legislation approved in 2012. The board plans to continue expanding the library as new courses are approved.

The library will help thousands of students who transfer college credit each year by simplifying the transfer process. Higher education officials say it also could improve college completion rates.

"The transfer library will make it easier for students to transfer credit they have earned from one college to another," said Rusty Monhollon, assistant commissioner for academic affairs at the Missouri Department of Higher Education. "Making the transfer process more effective and efficient is one way we are working to increase degree completion in our state."

The Missouri Legislature directed the board to establish by July 1 a library of at least 25 lower-division courses that transfer as equivalents at all public two- and four-year institutions and participating private colleges and universities.

Nearly 10,000 undergraduate students transferred credit from one Missouri postsecondary institution to another in 2011. The transfer library will help students save time and money by ensuring that specific courses can be transferred on a one-to-one basis among higher education institutions in the state. The library also will help students make more informed choices about the courses they take as they work toward a degree.

In the coming months, department officials will develop policies and procedures for the submission and review of additional courses for the library. An electronic database will be created to provide information about the library to students.

The six new courses added to the transfer library include:

  • Biology lecture for non-majors
  • Biology laboratory for non-majors
  • French I
  • French II
  • Spanish I
  • Spanish II

The following courses were previously approved for inclusion in the library:

  • American government
  • American history I
  • American history II
  • Anthropology
  • Art appreciation
  • Astronomy
  • Calculus I
  • College algebra
  • Drawing I
  • Introduction to sociology
  • Introduction to statistics
  • Macroeconomics
  • Microeconomics
  • Music appreciation
  • Oral communication
  • Philosophy
  • Psychology
  • Public speaking
  • Western civilization
  • World religions
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EDUCATIONFri, 13 Jun 2014 17:08:55 CST
<![CDATA[ Missouri higher education leaders to gather for annual forum]]>Board members, presidents and chancellors from colleges and universities across Missouri will gather Thursday, June 5, for the Third Annual Governing Board Forum at the Holiday Inn Executive Center in Columbia. Missouri’s Coordinating Board for Higher Education hosts the annual event, which provides an opportunity for higher education leaders to discuss local, state and national issues facing postsecondary institutions.

The day-long conference will feature two nationally recognized postsecondary education experts. Teresa Lubbers, Indiana commissioner of higher education and chair of the State Higher Education Executive Officers, will discuss strategies to increase college completion, improve productivity and ensure academic quality.

Dr. Sally Clausen, former Louisiana commissioner of higher education and president of the Louisiana State University System, is currently the executive director of the Ingram Center for Public Trusteeship and Governance at the Association of Governing Boards of Colleges and Universities. She will address the challenges and opportunities that come with governing Missouri’s higher education institutions.

Breakout discussion sessions will cover higher education finance, overcoming barriers to degree completion and linking higher education with Missouri’s economic and workforce needs.

Bringing local governing board members together to discuss topics of mutual interest contributes to a stronger and more cohesive system of higher education, according to Dalton Wright, chair of Missouri’s Coordinating Board for Higher Education.

“Many colleges and universities face similar challenges,” Wright said. “Our annual forum gives governing board members and higher education leaders an opportunity to step back from their own institutions to take a broader look at how important issues are being addressed across Missouri and in other parts of the country.”

Local higher education governing boards provide fiscal oversight, allocate financial resources, approve policies and programs, and hire chief executive officers at Missouri’s public two- and four- year colleges and universities. Board members at four-year institutions are appointed by the governor. Community college boards are elected by voters within each community college district.

Supporting sponsors for the Governing Board Forum include the Missouri Community College Association and the Council on Public Higher Education.

 

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EDUCATIONMon, 02 Jun 2014 15:57:17 CST
<![CDATA[ Missouri selected for national program focused on increasing college completion]]>Missouri has been chosen to participate in a national program that aims to increase completion rates at the state’s two- and four-year colleges and universities. The program focuses on competency-based education and credit for prior learning, which can reduce the amount of time required to earn a degree.

The Missouri Department of Higher Education and the Missouri Community College Association were selected by the Council for Adult Experiential Learning for its Competency-Based Education Jumpstart Program. The two Missouri agencies will be working collaboratively with higher education institutions in the state to implement the program.

Competency-based education allows students to learn at their own pace based on their mastery of the knowledge and skills needed for a degree. Credit for prior learning programs award college credit based on students’ knowledge and skills, including experience acquired during military service.

The Jumpstart Program will provide training for staff working to establish the knowledge and skill levels students must demonstrate to earn a degree. The work includes the development of new ways to assess student learning at the college level.

 Colleges and universities in Missouri are in the early stages of developing competency-based education programs.  The programs focus on adult and nontraditional students, including veterans, who have gained knowledge and skills through prior employment and military service. Students demonstrate their learning through a variety of assessments and often can move on to advanced courses more rapidly as they work toward a degree.

“Competency-based education is one way Missouri can help students complete a postsecondary degree and create the educated workforce we need,” said David Russell, commissioner of higher education. “By 2018, nearly 60 percent of the jobs in our state will require a two- or four-year degree or professional certificate.”

Currently, students participating in two programs at Missouri community colleges – MoHealthWINs and MoManufacturing WINs – can earn college credit through competency-based education and credit for prior learning. The Jumpstart Program will provide further support for the MoWINs programs, which offer low-cost training for high-demand health care and manufacturing industries.

"The Jumpstart training will provide an excellent opportunity to ensure that the work our community colleges are doing in MoHealthWINs and MoManufacturingWINs has a lasting impact," said Zora Mulligan, director of the Missouri Community College Association.

Missouri will begin the Jumpstart Program training this fall. 

 

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EDUCATIONFri, 18 Apr 2014 09:06:01 CST
<![CDATA[ International Education Day at the Capitol set for April 2]]>More than 400 international and study-abroad students and their advisers from Missouri’s colleges and universities are expected to gather in Jefferson City April 2 for International Education Day at the Capitol.

The event is hosted annually by the Study Missouri Consortium, a group of more than 40 of the state’s postsecondary institutions working together to promote international education and highlight the importance of cultural exchange.

The day-long event is designed to give students an opportunity to witness Missouri’s legislative process and share their experiences with other international students. Tours of the Capitol and visits with state lawmakers are also planned.

“Many international students are very interested in learning about our government and our way of life,” said Britta Wright, chair of the Study Missouri consortium and one of the organizers of the event. “International Education Day also gives the students a chance to talk with each other about the things they are seeing and doing in the United States.”

International Education Day has attracted students from as many as 70 countries in previous years. Missouri students who have studied abroad also participate in the event.

During the 2012-2013 school year, more than 17,300 international students attended a Missouri college or university, and more than 5,000 Missouri students studied abroad, according to the Institute of International Education.

Missouri ranks 12th in the nation in the number of international students enrolled in the state’s colleges and universities.

The Study Missouri Consortium hosts a photo contest as part of International Education Day. Winning photos from international and study-abroad students will be on display in the Capitol Rotunda during the event.

For more information about International Education Day, contact Wright at blwright@ccis.edu.

 

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EDUCATIONTue, 01 Apr 2014 13:38:49 CST
<![CDATA[ Missouri receives national recognition for work on 'reverse transfer' program]]>Missouri’s efforts to establish a  “reverse transfer” program to help more students earn an associate degree has been recognized by the Lumina Foundation, a national organization working to increase the number of Americans with high-quality college degrees and professional certificates.

The Missouri Reverse Transfer Program creates a statewide policy that allows a student to transfer college credit from a four-year university to a two-year college the student has attended in order to complete requirements for an associate degree.

The program is currently being piloted at 11 colleges and universities in the state.

“Missouri is a leader in this work,” Holly Zanville, strategy director for the Lumina Foundation, wrote in a letter to the Missouri Department of Higher Education. “Your project’s careful planning, development of a reasonable timeline, positive policy environment and institutional roll-out steps are well-conceived and show great promise for a successful statewide reverse transfer program.”

Higher-education officials say the reverse transfer program is designed to assist students who have earned a significant number of college credits but have not received an associate or bachelor degree. Through the program, students who have completed the required community college credits can qualify for an associate degree after they have transferred to a four-year college or university or if they are not currently attending college.

Students must have at least 15 hours of credit from a two-year college to be eligible to receive an associate degree from that institution.

Legislation approved by the Missouri General Assembly in 2012 called for the state to develop a reverse transfer policy for Missouri’s two- and four-year colleges and universities. A committee comprised of officials from the higher-education institutions and the Missouri Department of Higher Education began work on a policy that would meet the needs of students and the institutions.

A statewide technology and communication system to streamline the sharing of grade transcripts also had to be developed.

Two-year and four-year colleges and universities were paired up for the pilot project in 2013. The partnering institutions are:

·         Columbia College and Moberly Area Community College

·         Missouri State University and Ozarks Technical Community College

·         Missouri Western State University and Metropolitan Community College

·     Missouri Western State University and North Central Missouri College

·     Northwest Missouri State University and Metropolitan Community College

·         University of Missouri-Columbia and Moberly Area Community College

·         University of Missouri-St. Louis and St. Louis Community College

The pilot project will conclude in June. Plans are being made to expand the program to all public two- and four-year colleges and universities and participating private colleges in Missouri this fall.

“Through the reverse transfer program, Missouri’s two-year and four-year institutions are working to improve college completion rates in the state and award students the degrees they have earned,” said David Russell, Missouri commissioner of higher education. “These degrees can help open doors to more career opportunities, higher paying jobs and a better quality of life.”

For more information about the Missouri Reverse Transfer Program, visit www.dhe.mo.gov/MissouriReverseTransferforstudents.php.

 

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EDUCATIONWed, 12 Mar 2014 14:39:19 CST
<![CDATA[ College Application Week to be expanded this year to more Missouri high schools]]>The Missouri Coordinating Board for Higher Education voted Thursday to expand College Application Week following the event’s successful pilot program last October.

More than 2,000 students submitted 3,600 applications to higher education institutions during the event at 26 high schools in the Kansas City and St. Louis areas and the south central part of the state.

Missouri hopes to double the number of high schools participating this year.

“Encouraging students to explore their options for higher education and apply to college is an important step in helping more Missourians earn a postsecondary degree,” said David Russell, Missouri commissioner of higher education. “We look forward to reaching out to more students by expanding College Application Week to additional schools throughout the state.”

While the event was open to all seniors at participating high schools, the focus was to increase the number of college applications submitted by low-income students and students who would be the first in their family to attend college.

The high schools provided time and resources during the school day for the event. A number of activities, including assemblies and college tours, promoted the importance of completing a higher education program and earning a two- or four-year degree or professional certificate.

College Application Week was sponsored by the Missouri Department of Higher Education with assistance from the Missouri College Advising Corps, a group of recent graduates working in high schools with a large percentage of students who are less likely to attend college. Advisers worked one-on-one with students to help them complete college application forms.

Missouri was one of more than two dozen states sponsoring College Application Week activities last fall.

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EDUCATIONFri, 07 Feb 2014 15:23:29 CST
<![CDATA[ State higher education board approves 16 more courses for 'transfer library']]>The Missouri Coordinating Board for Higher Education has approved 16 courses for a new statewide “transfer course library” that will assist students with the transfer of selected courses for credit at public colleges and universities in the state. The higher education board’s action brings to 20 the number of approved courses in the transfer library.

Thousands of students in Missouri transfer college credit every year. In 2011, nearly 10,000 undergraduate students transferred credit from one public postsecondary institution in the state to another.

Higher education officials say the library will make the transfer process easier for more students and could help improve college completion rates. The avoidance of duplication will save transfer students time and money.

 “We want to make it easier for students to transfer credits they have earned at one college or university to any other public institution and have those credits count toward a degree,” said David Russell, Missouri commissioner of higher education. “Missouri’s growing transfer library of courses can help students earn degrees by making sure that some basic entry level courses need not be taken twice just because the student transferred to a new institution.”

The library is being developed by the Department of Higher Education in cooperation with the state’s public four-year and two-year institutions. The library listing will provide information about courses that transfer on a one-to-one equivalent basis among all public colleges and universities in Missouri. For example, a student who has successfully completed American history at one college can receive credit for American history when transferring to another college in the state.

State legislation approved in 2012 called on the department to create a transfer library of 25 courses by July 1. The board approved the first four courses for the library in September 2013.

The department is currently working with higher education institutions in the state to identify five additional courses for board approval by mid-summer. The department plans to eventually increase the library beyond the minimum 25 courses required by state law.

An electronic database is currently being developed to make the library easily accessible for students.

The new courses approved for the transfer library are:

·         American government

·         American history I

·         American history II

·         Anthropology

·         Art appreciation

·         Astronomy

·         Calculus I

·         Drawing I

·         Introduction to statistics

·         Music appreciation

·         Oral communication

·         Philosophy

·         Psychology

·         Public speaking

·         Western civilization

·         World religions

The four courses approved in September 2013 are:

·         Microeconomics

·         Macroeconomics

·         College algebra

·         Sociology

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EDUCATIONFri, 07 Feb 2014 11:42:16 CST
<![CDATA[ Free events offer students help with financial aid application]]>Missouri students and their families will have more opportunity this year to get help filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Financial Aid – an important first step in applying for financial aid for college.

Missouri’s FAFSA Frenzy, sponsored annually by the state Department of Higher Education, is being expanded to 81 events in 44 counties during January, February and March. Professional assistance with filling out the form is provided free of charge.

“FAFSA Frenzy can assist families with the sometimes daunting process of applying for financial aid to help with the cost of higher education,” said David Russell, Missouri commissioner of higher education. “For most students, completing a FAFSA is a vital part of the college planning process.”

In 2013, more than 1,400 students participated in 57 FAFSA Frenzy events across the state. In the past decade, more than 10,000 Missouri students received assistance during the events.

Most FAFSA Frenzy events are held at high schools and colleges. Students and their families can receive help at any location in the state, no matter where a student attends high school or plans to go to college.

A majority of the events this year will be held Sunday, Feb. 9. Information about all dates and locations can be found at dhe.mo.gov/ppc/ffsites.php, or by visiting the Department of Higher Education website at dhe.mo.gov and clicking on the FAFSA Frenzy banner.

Students must fill out a FAFSA every year to be eligible for most types of federal and state financial aid, including grants, loans and scholarships. Many colleges and universities also use the application to determine eligibility for their financial assistance and scholarship programs. 

The FAFSA should be completed as early as possible. April 1 is the deadline to qualify for the state’s Access Missouri grant program, while most colleges and universities have earlier financial-aid deadlines.

Students and families do not need to have their federal income taxes filed for 2013 in order to participate in a FAFSA Frenzy event or complete the FAFSA themselves.

Participants are asked to bring:

·         2013 W-2 forms.

·         Copies of their 2013 tax forms, if they are ready. If students or their parents have not yet filed 2013 returns before they attend a FAFSA Frenzy event, they should be sure to bring any statements of interest earned in 2013, any 1099 forms, and any other forms required to complete their tax returns. This will allow students and their parents to submit FAFSA online during the event. Once tax returns are filed, students can then submit corrections to their FAFSA. The IRS Data Retrieval Tool should be available to help submit corrections accurately within a few weeks after the tax file date.

·         Student PIN and parent PIN. Students and parents may apply for PINs at www.pin.ed.gov before attending a FAFSA Frenzy event. 

Students who attend a FAFSA Frenzy event will be entered into a statewide drawing to win a scholarship that can be used for enrollment in a Missouri higher education program for the fall 2014 term. Scholarship funds are being provided by the Missouri Higher Education Loan Authority and the Missouri Association of Student Financial Aid Personnel.

Events to help students plan and pay for college are one way Missouri is working to achieve its goal for 60 percent of the adults in the state to have a two- or four- year degree or high-quality professional certificate by 2025. Currently, about 46 percent of Missourians ages 25 to 64 hold a postsecondary certificate or college degree.

 

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EDUCATIONWed, 22 Jan 2014 16:12:14 CST
<![CDATA[ New report ranks Missouri 12th in number of international students]]>A new report released this week ranks Missouri 12th in the nation in the number of international students enrolled at the state’s colleges and universities.

More than 17,300 international students – an increase of 7.7 percent – chose Missouri as their destination for higher education during the 2012-2013 academic year, according to the Institute of International Education’s Open Doors 2013 report. The state previously ranked 13th nationwide in the number of international students.

The number of Missouri students studying abroad also increased, from 4,650 to 4,938.

“International education fosters an exchange of cultural experiences and ideas on our campuses and in our communities that is crucial in our global society,” said Britta Wright, chair of Study Missouri and director of international student services at Columbia College. “We are pleased to see an increasing number of foreign students coming to Missouri for higher education opportunities as well as more Missourians studying in other countries.”

Study Missouri is a consortium of more than 40 colleges and universities that promotes the state’s diverse academic opportunities to students in other countries and study abroad opportunities for Missouri students.

More than one-third of international students studying in Missouri are from China. Other countries with the highest number of students in the state are India, Saudi Arabia, South Korea and Japan.

Missouri universities enrolling the largest numbers of international students are:  University of Missouri-Columbia, 2,490 students; Washington University, 2,235 students; Missouri State University, 1,482 students; University of Missouri-Kansas City, 1,287 students; and Lindenwood University, 1,245 students.

The report also examines the economic impact of international education. Total expenditures by foreign students in Missouri were estimated at more than $452 million during the 2012-2013 academic year.

 

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EDUCATIONWed, 13 Nov 2013 08:36:00 CST