The Adult College Completion Initiative
The Office of the State Superintendent of Education’s (OSSE) Adult College Completion (ACC) Initiative seeks to encourage adult learners (either first-time or returning) to earn a degree or other postsecondary credentials.
Adult learners often face various challenges that keep them from completing their postsecondary goals. In January 2014, OSSE convened a working group comprised of 10 adult-friendly community and postsecondary partners, aimed at providing stronger institutionalized and community-based support for adult learners. The working group designed a district-wide campaign to educate adult learners about the available paths for college completion.
The ACC Initiative helps promote a collaborative approach to increasing adult college completion and brings the student-centered perspective to the forefront of college completion work.
2021 ACC Working Group Members:
- DC ReEngagement Center (DC REC)
- DC Tuition Assistance Grant (DCTAG)
- DC Department of Insurance, Securities and Banking - Student Loan Ombudsman
- Educational Opportunity Center
- Latin American Youth Center Career Academy Public Charter School
- OSSE Division of Early Learning (DEL)
- Reach 4 Success - College Information Center
- Trinity Washington University
Adult-friendly Community Based Organizations
Many community organizations within the District offer certificate training programs, college counseling, adult education programs and financial aid and scholarship opportunities for adult learners. The community-based organizations listed below have been featured at the Adult College Completion Fair in previous years. Please visit their websites for more information on programs and services.
Academy of Hope (AOH)
Briya Public Charter School
Carlos Rosario International Public Charter School
Community College Preparatory Academy
Department of Veteran Affairs
District of Columbia Department of Disability Services (DDS)
District of Columbia Department of Human Resources (DCHR)
District of Columbia Public Library (DCPL)
District of Columbia ReEngagement Center (DC REC)
Educational Opportunity Center (College Board)
Goodwill Training Programs
Latin American Youth Center Career Academy (LAYCCA)
The Next Step Public Charter School
Reach 4 Success - The College Information Center
So Others Might Eat - Center for Employment Training
Tuition Assistance Program Initiative for TANF (TAPIT)
Revisiting the Dream
Have you gone as far in your career as you can without a college degree? Or is your dream to transition to a career that requires postsecondary education? Whether it's job-related or for personal development, obtaining a credential or graduating from college opens up a new world of potential for your life.
Follow These Steps to Ease the Transition to College:
STEP 1: EXPLORE FINANCIAL AID
It is important to understand your options regarding financial aid to pay for college. Financial aid applications can be complex and adult resources are limited. Start now.
- To explore federal financial aid opportunities, complete and submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form. The FAFSA application opens on Oct. 1 of each year and students should submit by March 1. Your school’s deadline may be earlier, so be sure to ask. Visit fafsa.ed.gov to access the FAFSA application.
- Talk to a financial aid counselor about how to find scholarships, fellowships, grants and other sources of free aid. The less you have to pay out of pocket and borrow, the better off you’ll be. If you are under the age of 24, you may be eligible for the DC Tuition Assistance Grant (DCTAG).Please contact the DCTAG office at (202) 727-2824 for more information.
- The Mayor’s Scholars Undergraduate Program provides need-based funding, to cover tuition and fees, for eligible DC residents pursuing their first undergraduate degree at a select public or private college or university in the DC metro area. Please visit osse.dc.gov/mayorsscholars for more information.
- Many community organizations within the District offer scholarships to Adult learners. Please visit the following websites for more information:
- Public Allies
- The Herb Block Foundation
- Tuition Assistance Program Initiative for TANF (TAPIT)
- Contact the Financial Aid office at your prospective school and request a full list of scholarships available. Also, check with your academic advisors, as sometimes an academic college or department will offer scholarships.
Employers & organizational options
- Many employers and organizations offer tuition assistance and reimbursement; check with your human resources department.
STEP 2: GET ENROLLED
Make an appointment with an admissions officer to review enrollment information.
Complete the application process
- Be sure to mark application dates and deadlines on your calendar so you won’t miss them. Submit your admissions application and any separate department or program applications as early as possible, and well before any deadlines.
- If you have earned college credits from previous institutions, you will need to request your official transcripts from the office of the registrar of each college you have attended. The transcript must be mailed directly from the college you attended to the college you are applying to.
- Once you have been accepted, be sure to register for classes as soon as possible. Attend orientations and explore campus and community organizations. The more involved you become the more likely you are to succeed.
STEP 3: GET AN ADVISOR
- Many schools have special offices or advisors for adult students. These professionals can tell you what programs and services are specifically available, such as day care, career counseling and financial aid.
STEP 4: CHART YOUR COURSE
Work with academic advisors to design a class schedule that works for you.
- Whichever schedule option you choose, be sure to follow your degree plan.
- Generally, you should allow six hours of study per week for each three-credit-hour course.