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College & Career Training in Alaska

As you enjoy the final weeks of summer, make sure to prepare for your transition to college or training - whether you're returning or starting for the first time.

How Returning Students Can Prepare

Are you on track to complete your program? To keep costs low, and ensure you graduate, you should update your academic and financial plan at least once a year.

  1. If you haven't done so yet, decide on a major to avoid increased cost from taking unnecessary courses. Your academic advisor, or free online tools like the Alaska Career Information System (AKCIS), can help.
  2. Meet with an academic advisor to discuss your degree completion plan, and the coursework required.
  3. Register for an on-time track of coursework. For undergraduate students, this is typically at least 15 credits a semester to finish:
    a certificate in 1 year, an Associate's degree in 2 years, or a Bachelor's degree in 4 years.
  4. Review your plan to pay for college or training, and talk to your financial aid office staff to identify ways to fill any gaps. Remember if you plan to attend college/training during the 2021-2022 year, you can still fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

How New Students Can Prepare

By now, you should have already started applying to the postsecondary institution you plan to attend, if not there is still time, but the process is not over.

  1. Take all required placement tests, meet with an academic advisor to make sure you know what courses you need to take, and register for enough courses to stay on track (typically, at least 12 to 15 credits a semester for a full-time student and 6 credits for half-time).
  2. Work with your financial aid office staff, make sure they have all the information needed to award and release your financial aid. Remember if you plan to attend college/training during the 2021-2022 year you can still fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)  if you plan to attend for the 2022-2023 academic year you can fill out the FAFSA in October.
  3. Many high school seniors are admitted conditionally pending high school graduation. If this applies to you, remember to submit your final transcript to the institution immediately after you graduate to complete admissions.
  4. Make sure your housing plans are finalized, whether you plan to live on campus or off.
  5. Sign up for New Student Orientation, if available, to learn about all the resources your institution offers.

Ask questions! If you're not sure of your application status, call your school to ask for an update.

About the Author

Christina Campbell

Christina Campbell

ACPE: College & Career Specialist

Christina Campbell is a College & Career Specialist with the Alaska Commission on Postsecondary Education. She has a BS in Journalism and Communications from Eastern New Mexico University, and a Broadcast Meteorology Certification in Geosciences from Mississippi State University. Christina was on the original implementation team that brought College Goal Sunday to Alaska in 2005. 

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