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Session 23 College Access Campaign andFederal Student Aid Campaign Melanie Corrigan American Council on Education Mary K. Muncie Federal Student Aid
Sponsors • The Ad Council • Development, implementation, distribution and evaluation of the campaign • American Council on Education • Issue and technical experts • Understanding of community and constituents
Sponsors • Lumina Foundation for Education • Primary funder • Grantee resources • Federal Student Aid – US Department of Education • Key fulfillment partner • Brochure, 800#, translation
College Access and Income Income Achievement Source: U.S. Department of Education
Key Findings: College Access • Low-income students are underrepresented • They have high aspirations • Do not understand how to get ready – process is a mystery to them
Key Findings - Student Attitudes • Survey of low income parents and teens in January 2006. • Aspirations for college are high. • All low income teens (91%) want a college degree. • Virtually all (88%) disagree with the statement ‘I don’t believe that college is for someone like me.’ • They are not academically prepared.
Key Findings - Student Perceptions • Many teens turn to their parents for support, however they are relying on themselves and their friends to help them through the process. • The majority of low income teens (56%) feel their parents have been very helpful in applying to or considering college. However, 14% of low income teens do not find their parents helpful. • While teens felt that parents (26%) and teachers (22%) where the most helpful to them applying to or considering college, many (15%) have been doing most of the work themselves.
Key Findings - Parent Attitudes and Behavior • Most low income parents strongly disagree (73%) that their child is not college material. • BUT only 20% of low income parents have pushed their child to apply to or seriously consider college. • Most (57%) think the decision is up to their child
Key Findings - Qualitative Interviews • In-home family interviews • Aspirations • Community focused • Multiple pressures
Disruption: Beyond good grades, there are action steps you need to take to get to college. Conventional Wisdom: “You get good grades and you get to college, right?” Big Idea: Getting into college doesn’t just “happen” How we want them to think: “If I want to go to college, I can’t leave it up to chance. I need take the necessary steps to make sure it happens. Who can I talk to?
College Access Basic Message • Big dreams and good grades are not enough. • There are actual steps you need to take. • The first and most important is finding someone who can help. • COLLEGE: Know How 2 GO!
College Access • Be a pain • Persistent, don’t give up • Push yourself • Take the right classes
College Access • Find the perfect fit • Discover your passion, find the right school • Get your hands on some money • Apply for financial aid
College Access Challenges • Informational • Motivate students • Inform guiding adults • Operational • Penetrate communities • Activate broad grassroots network
PSA Campaign Target • Year 1 Target: • Primary: Low-income, 1st generation students in grades 8 -10 • Secondary: Parents/adult guardian • Rationale: • Child is the primary ‘activator’ • Parent’s role is more supportive
Media Components • Traditional media • TV • Radio • Print • Outdoor • Internet banners
Media Components • Non-traditional media • In-school posters • Gaming partners • Viral components • Engage community partners • Localizing messages • Campaign support
Fulfillment - English and Spanish • Web site • Sections for students, parents, and organizations • Comprehensive information by target and age • Connection to local community groups • Printed brochure • Toll-free number (800)4FED-AID
College Access - Ongoing Activities • Enlisting partners • GED, YMCA • 3M, Simon Malls • Public Relations (Powell-Tate) • Launch • Momentum
Why Is Federal Student Aid Initiating a Campaign? • 41% of 19 million undergraduates did not submit a FAFSA (03-04 program year) • That’s 7 million who did not apply for aid • 1.5 million of those would have been Pell eligible • Of the 59% who applied virtually all would be eligible for some aid The Most Costly Education Is the One Not Begun
We Are Federal Student Aid • Largest single source of funding • Focused on processing and distributing • New to awareness and outreach—need to • Clarify our role • Promote our services—they’re FREE • Inspire as well as inform—call to action
Establish Federal Student Aid as the Trusted Source • Simplify and unify our identity • Align our messaging and mission • “Speak with one voice”—consistent look and feel
Influence the 7 Million Three-pronged campaign • Mass audience—cause potential • Partnerships • Target underrepresented populations
Mass Audience Engage public without paying—PSAs • TV • Radio • Print • Generate the “buzz”
Partnerships Leverage others • Common agenda organizations • Public interest groups • Business community—internal • Business community—external
Target Underrepresented Populations • Pilot with urban youth • Philadelphia • Charlotte • Latinos and African-Americans • Community of influencers • Evaluate and refine
Combined Synergy Amplify Our Message • Aid is available • Information is free • Applying is free
Take Action Complete the FAFSAStart Here So that the 7 Million Go Further