The Vermont Student Assistance Corp. (VSAC) has been helping Vermont students achieve their goals beyond high school since 1965. While their services are used by individuals of all ages, they’re particularly useful for Champlain College Online’s population of adult learners, who often have significant financial responsibilities that can make paying for college a challenge.
One of the ways they serve adult learners is through the VSAC Educational Opportunity Center (EOC), which is a dedicated program designed to help Vermont adults access college and career training. The EOC is a federal TRIO program, designed to provide services for individuals from diverse backgrounds and funded by a U.S. Department of Education anti-poverty grant. Specifically, the EOC is designed to help break down barriers to higher education for adults who are first-generation college students and do not have the financial resources to attend college.
Working with the VSAC Educational Opportunity Center
As one of just two statewide educational opportunity centers, the VSAC EOC provides a wide range of services, with a focus on providing guidance on career exploration, sharing information on college and training options, and helping students pay for their education. They employ seven counselors based around the state, so staff are able to meet with people in their communities.
Typically, counselors will meet with interested students at a location convenient to them for an introductory meeting, usually around an hour long (virtual sessions are also available). They’ll review the student’s academic and work history, discuss their goals for the future, and begin to plan the pathways to help them get there - including coming up with a financial plan.
After that initial meeting, counselors will pull together or provide referrals to appropriate resources, assist clients in filling out financial aid forms, and help determine eligibility for various funding options. VSAC EOC also administers scholarships specifically designed to meet the needs of their target population, through which they support over 1,700 adult Vermonters annually.
These meetings are a great opportunity for anyone who is thinking about taking the next step towards a college education but isn’t sure what they want to do or where to start. The VSAC EOC counselors know that that first step is often the hardest, and can be intimidating - they provide a kind, compassionate, and judgment-free space for you to start thinking about building your future.
To get in contact with a VSAC EOC counselor and take advantage of the free services they provide, give the office a call and schedule your appointment. Contact information can be found on the VSAC website.