STATEWIDE – At the end of March, the Maine Education Opportunity Center will be hosting free virtual sessions for people who need help getting higher education.
The Essentials of College Planning sessions are funded by the federal department of education and the main goal of the sessions is to assist people complete college applications to help get them into Maine’s colleges.
“We have connections at the colleges we know who somebody should talk to if they’ve got a question about is this the right place for me or do you have this transcript or not. Applying for college is a big deal. It’s hard to get started if you’re not sure where to start,” said Kate Walsh, a college access advisor for the Maine Education Opportunity Center.
The sessions have over 2200 slots available to those throughout Penobscot and Waldo counties.
Walsh added the education opportunity center will also help guide people to acquiring the proper funding for their potential college journeys.
“We don’t have actual dollars to give people but we help them access the dollars by applying for federal financial aid and private scholarships, and knowing if they’re eligible for any of the state initiatives, helping them through those applications,” Walsh said.
She added this opportunity is tailored mostly for low income people or those who are the first generation in their family to consider college.
“So 67% of the people we serve over a year has to meet both those requirements but if somebody was just recently unemployed and they’re not sure what their next step is and they’re thinking about higher education. They can work with us,” Walsh said.
She likened herself and other advisors to be like high school guidance counselors, expect for people who have already graduated high school. “We can stay with the students until they’ve completed their bachelor’s degree, questions come up every year about different aspects of their higher education, we’re still there to help them answer their question.”
To apply, visit the Maine Educational Opportunity Center website.