College Cash Campaign: Coordinator Resources
Help students pay for college by hosting a College Cash Campaign!
College Cash Campaign (CCC) is a school's collection of events and activities that are coordinated under one goal: ensuring that students have appropriate financial resources to attend college. In many cases, schools and communities already host financial aid nights or scholarship events. Oregon CCC assists schools in developing a cohesive message and calendar that brings all of these critical events under one umbrella. Individual events may be planned or hosted by various members of a school community, but the overall campaign is most successful when a committed coordinator (or two!) takes responsibility for developing the calendar. The coordinator resources are designed to help you and your team plan the most effective campaign for your community.
We send regular updates and reminders to help coordinators with planning. Have you missed one? Access the archives here.
Do you have examples of best practices that you’ve used to prepare for your College Cash Campaign event? Share them with your fellow coordinators! Submit your ideas, documents or photos by sending us a message (or post a quick tip to the Facebook page).
☑ Register.► Sign up to be an official CCC site.
● While you're at it, consider registering to host all three 12th grade events - College Application Week, College Cash Campaign, and Decision Day.
► Review the Coordinator Handbook and materials.
● Contact Oregon GEAR UP with any questions. Email or use the "Contact Us" form at the bottom of this page.
► Follow us on social media so you can keep up to date and share useful posts with students. We're on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
► Sign up for FAFSA+ to keep track of your students' FAFSA completion rates.
☑ Think ahead.► Recruit your CCC team. Include a variety of people who will help plan and host your event - administrators, teachers, parents, and students are all good choices!
► Meet with your team to choose what types of events - workshops for students, family nights, school-wide activities, etc. - you want to host.
● Include at least one event that assists with each of the following to increase your students' awareness of all the different ways to pay for college: overview of financial aid, FAFSA/ORSAA completion, Oregon Promise & OSAC Scholarship application completion, understanding financial aid awards & educational loans, and budgeting & financial literacy.
● Set your objectives and goals for each event. What do you want participants to learn or do? How many people do you hope will participate?
► Decide what days, weeks, or months you will host activities.
● Use the 12th Grade Events Planning Calendar to map out your plan for all activities intended to help seniors apply, pay for, and go to college. This will help ensure you -and your students- aren't overwhelmed with tasks or events.
● See the CCC Coordinator Handbook for suggested timelines/monthly themes.
☑ Prepare students.► Encourage students to download the free It's A Plan mobile app for iPhone and Android.
● The app guides students through the ten key steps to apply, pay, and go to college and provides a safe place to store important information they'll need to complete their applications - like SSNs, usernames, and passwords.
● The app is available in the Apple Store and GooglePlay (coming soon).
Because College Cash Campaign is an umbrella organizing all of your activities, workshops, and events related to helping students pay for college, you may have multiple people planning various events. You can find suggestions for planning activities related to each of the 6 key financial aid themes in the Coordinator's Handbook. The following checklists contain tasks you'll want to complete for each event.
☑ Get ready.► Add the event to your school/organization calendar.
► Reserve space. Do you need a computer lab, classroom, auditorium or cafeteria?
● If you will be using a computer lab, make sure they'll be functional during your event. Check websites students will use to be sure they aren't blocked by firewalls.
● For FAFSA completion events, be sure computers have the most up-to-date version of Chrome, Internet Explorer, or Safari; students will not be able to work on their FAFSA on earlier versions or other browsers.
► Plan for additional needs that arise if you have after-hours or family events.
● Will offering food or childcare increase the number of families who can participate? Can these services be donated? Make appropriate arrangements for your community's needs.
☑ Get help.► Use guest speakers, especially for topics you are less comfortable leading.
► Recruit volunteers. They can help welcome students & families to an event, answer questions, assist with filling out forms.
● Consider using younger students as volunteers when appropriate. This provides the assistance you need and helps prepare them for what's coming.
► Ask faculty and staff how they would like to get involved.
☑ Spread the word.► Remind students and families about your event. Use your school's most effective means of communicating important information. Include suggestions of ways parents/guardians can help their 12th grader prepare for the event.
● Hint: completing the "My Plan" section of the It's A Plan mobile app is one great way!
► Remind teachers and staff about your event and encourage them to reinforce the importance of participating with their 12th grade students.
► Hang posters and other signs around your building to advertise the event. Color posters came with your CCC mailing. Black & white posters can be downloaded and decorated.
► Send a press release to your local media if your event is open to the public or will include participation of the majority of your 12th grade class.
● Consider inviting them to send a report to cover the story.
☑ Prepare your space.► Are you hosting a FAFSA/ORSAA or scholarship application completion event or another type of event that requires computers? Double check that your district hasn't blocked relevant websites. Open browsers on all computers to the page where you want students and families to start.
► Designate a clear place where students will sign out so you can track who has participated and what they have accomplished.
● Make it easier: print a complete list of your senior class to use as a sign-in/out sheet during your event. Include space to ask if they have met the objective.
► Greet volunteers, give them a nametag, and assign them a job to do.
● Tip: use the CCC "I Applied" stickers as nametags.
☑ Do it!► Help students and families complete the task. Celebrate their successes when they do.
► Remind students to sign out on your sheet, including verifying they completed the task.
● If families participated in your event, make note of the number in attendance.
► Post photos to social media. Use #OregonCCC. If your objectives included completing applications for scholarships or financial aid, add #IApplied
● Encourage students to update their Facebook profile photo to include the Oregon College Cash Campaign profile frame.
☑ Follow up.► Complete the CCC Activity Snapshot.
● Do this for each activity or event you host. The brief survey asks you to report the number of students and family members who participated and the number that completed the task or objective.
► Update your records and any public displays showing progress, especially for events related to FAFSA/ORSAA or scholarship completion.
☑ Evaluate.► Debrief with your planning team and volunteers. What went well? What will you change for next time?
► Decide if you need to offer any additional support related to this theme, topic, or objective.
☑ Look ahead.► Begin planning your next activity or event designed to help students pay for college.
DOWNLOADABLE PLANNING RESOURCES, TEMPLATES, AND FORMS
Download the CCC Coordinator Handbook and choose the individual files you need to plan and host your event. Find what you need to help you plan, recruit help, and get the word out.
Helpful Information for All Events
INFORMATION & RESOURCES FOR 6 KEY FINANCIAL AID TOPICS
Financial Aid Overview
- Financial Aid 102 Presentation
- Financial Aid Toolkit
- FAFSA+ Registration
- FAFSA Completion Data
- FAFSA Completion Poster in Color and B&W
- FAFSA Demonstration Site
username: eddemo; password: fafsatest
- FAFSA on the Web Worksheet
- Paper FAFSA
- ORSAA Eligibility Quiz & Guide
- What Students Need: FAFSA/ORSAA
- Who Is My Financial Aid Parent?
- CSS PROFILE