Coalition launches student competition, targets paying for college


Staff Report



FRANKFORT — The Kentucky College & Career Connection (Ky3C) coalition invites middle and high school students to create 30-second Public Service Announcements promoting the idea that there’s more than one way to pay for college.

Challenge winners will have their work produced and broadcast on television and radio stations statewide. Entries must be received by Feb. 1, 2016.

The competition is part of the Kentucky Department of Education’s Student Technology Leadership (STLP) Program and its Digital Products Online Judging competition. STLP is a statewide program that helps students use technology for their school and community.

“Having a college degree or credential has never been more important, yet the cost can be a concern for Kentucky families,” said Aaron Thompson, executive vice president, Council on Postsecondary Education. “The challenge is designed to engage students in sharing the message that postsecondary education is affordable because there are multiple ways to lower the out-of-pocket costs.”

For their projects, students will choose one of five strategies that lower the cost of college: find your career path; fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA); get good grades to earn scholarships; get a head start on college classes; and start saving now. There will be winners in each category.

“With our focus on preparing all graduates for college and careers, an opportunity is lost when students with an aptitude and desire to attend college cannot,” Education Commissioner Stephen Pruitt said. “If our young people and our state are to prosper, we need to work to close that opportunity gap in whatever ways possible.”

“Paying for college is a significant concern for many of the students and families we serve,” said Morehead State University’s Dan Connell, who serves as Ky3C chair. “Our goal through this collaborative initiative is to give students the opportunity to shape and share the positive message that college can be affordable if you plan early and work hard.”

“This student-driven approach is designed to generate more authentic and relevant messages for the targeted student audience,” said Rachel Belin, senior director of the Prichard Committee for Academic Excellence’s Student Voice Team. “The strategy is a natural outgrowth of our work to integrate Kentucky’s young people as full partners in education policy and advocacy work.”

Submissions will be evaluated by judges from across the state, many of whom will be students. Finalists will be announced in February and offered the opportunity to work with media professionals to further develop and finalize their product for broadcast. Winners in each category will be recognized in April at the statewide STLP awards ceremony at Rupp Arena in Lexington.

Any Kentucky school can participate in the STLP program and all students in a participating school are eligible to compete. Coordinators at participating schools are available to support and advise students as they create and submit their projects.

Ky3C coalition is a statewide network of more than 30 Kentucky programs and organizations and was launched last February as a joint initiative by the Council on Postsecondary Education, the Kentucky Department of Education, Kentucky Higher Education Assistance Authority and Kentucky Adult Education. The mission of the coalition is to align, enhance and expand college and career outreach efforts statewide.

More information, including the challenge rules and requirements, is available at stlp.education.ky.gov, and then click on DOPJ. Entries must be uploaded by the deadline to be eligible.

For more information about the Ky3C Coalition, visit http://ky3Ccoalition.blogspot.com.

Staff Report

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