4 Tips for Success in Keeping Students Enrolled in Career Colleges

Posted by Dara Warn on 8/28/14 11:00 AM

At a typical career college, about 40 percent of students drop out before completing their training, according to Complete College America.1  While this is clearly a problem for the students, it also costs the colleges a lot of money. Estimates provided by a group of six retention experts polled by Career College Central report that lost revenue due to attrition can be as much as $3,000 per student, if the student drops in the first quarter. To break it down further, the report drew a portrait of the average per-dropout costs of attrition; assuming a career college's average monthly tuition is $1,200, the average time to graduate is 14 months, and most dropouts occur during the first half of the term, schools lose at least seven months of revenue, equating $8,400, per dropout.1

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Topics: Dropout Crisis, Middle Skills Gap, College Enrollment & Retention, Colleges & Career Schools

Grey is the New Black: Why Grey Collar Jobs are Worth Your Attention

Posted by Kate Mosteller on 8/27/14 11:00 AM

Student in Mechanic Shop

Although our economy hasn’t completely rebounded and fiscally healed from the 2008 financial collapse, the economy has gradually burgeoned into a relatively recovered, stable job market with diverse occupational opportunity. As of summer 2014, the U.S. economy has added 209,000 jobs, and the unemployment rate slightly increased to 6.2 percent. The 2014 economy has steadily added 1.5 million jobs for six straight months, which illustrates positive economic growth and a stronger economy. Most notably, manufacturing (99,000 added jobs), construction (114,000 added jobs), retail trade, and professional and business services are increasing.

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Topics: Middle Skills Gap, Industry News, Employee Retention

Why High School Graduation is the Key to Improving At-Risk Communities (Part 2 of 5)

Posted by Frank Britt on 8/25/14 11:00 AM

What Drives (and Improves) Economic and Productivity Growth in a Community?

States that invest in education help build a strong foundation for economic success and prosperity, according to the 2013 Economic Analysis and Research Network report, "A Well-Educated Workforce is Key to State Prosperity." Education is the foundation to providing people from disadvantaged backgrounds with decent health care and sufficient nutrition, the report found.

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Topics: Dropout Crisis, College Enrollment & Retention

Tips for Attracting Non-Traditional Students to Your School

Posted by Dara Warn on 8/21/14 11:00 AM

Studies show that only 25 percent of the population reports they have enough money or time to attend a traditional four-year college.1 By removing the barriers of high tuition and inflexible scheduling, career colleges open themselves up to a remaining 75 percent of potential students not enrolled in postsecondary education due to lack of financial resources or societal limitations.

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Topics: Dropout Crisis, High School Completion, College Enrollment & Retention, Colleges & Career Schools

Raise the Potential of Hourly Workers in 4 Simple Steps

Posted by Dara Warn on 8/19/14 10:00 AM

It’s no surprise employees in retail, fast food, and trade industries don’t consider their hourly job a long-term gig. Often young, underpaid, and lacking motivation, the retail and QSR labor force frequently takes jobs without thought or hope of a future career. And it seems execs in these industries have not only grown accustomed to this type of attitude among their workers but have subconsciously condoned it as well. Finding loyal and long-term employees simply hasn’t been the priority for these employers—until now.

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Topics: High School Completion, Employee Retention, Employers

Why High School Graduation is the Key to Improving At-Risk Communities (Part 1 of 5)

Posted by Frank Britt on 8/18/14 11:00 AM

A Case for Action

Through education, at-risk youth can be transformed into high school graduates armed with academic and professional capabilities and better social and civic skills. Education is the catalyst for bottom-up change and can become the epicenter in successful communities. The high school diploma serves as the most important impetus for driving personal and communal change. Educate our youth, and our communities will flourish. In fact, it can be argued that the successful graduation of even a single student de-risks a family unit and can amplify their impact by encouraging others to become contributing members of society. The power of example demonstrated by just a one individual graduating high school can begin to galvanize a single building or street. At scale, it can help build workforces with higher productivity, leading to lower poverty and reduced crime rates.

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Topics: Dropout Crisis, College Enrollment & Retention

Send Penn Foster to SXSWedu 2015

Posted by Laurie Woychick on 8/15/14 1:00 PM

As you may know, South by Southwest (SXSW) is a set of film and music festivals and interactive conferences that take place every spring in Austin, Texas. It began in 1987, and has continued to grow in size every year, and last year exceeded 12,000 people.  Recently they added atrack on educationand have created a one-of-a-kind event where innovative leaders come together to change how we teach and learn, and to discuss the future of American education and career training. 

Last year, Penn Foster presented “Online Education as a Passport for Learning,” which you can see our panel here.

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Topics: Penn Foster News & Events

Supporting The Pursuit of Education: 3 Career College Rebuttals to "I Can't Go To School Because..."

Posted by Ray McNulty on 8/15/14 10:30 AM

The pursuit of education, from earning a high school diploma to graduating college, is never an easy endeavor, especially for re-engaging students and nontraditional learners. A multitude of factors can affect the education attainment levels of someone struggling to go to or stay in school, including family life, social influences, unsupportive toxic surroundings, misguided direction, and lack of awareness of alternatives.

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Topics: High School Completion, College Enrollment & Retention

Prevent Summer Melt and Keep Students Enrolled in College

Posted by Dara Warn on 8/14/14 1:00 PM

Educating our nation's youth requires ongoing involvement and support from education leaders. Although earning a high school diploma and enrolling in college are triumphant milestones for a student to reach, more of these students are failing to matriculate, faltering in the transitional period after graduation and before the first day of college classes. These college-enrolled students who never show up to campus comprise a phenomenon knownas "summer melt." During the summer months leading up to college, several factors can derail a student from actually stepping foot on campus in the fall, despite their academic ambition and college eligibility.

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Topics: Industry News, College Enrollment & Retention, Colleges & Career Schools

Back to (Home)school

Posted by Kate Mosteller on 8/13/14 2:23 PM


It’s back-to-school season, and the second busiest shopping event of the year is in full swing. For many, the term back-to-school conjures up images of shiny yellow school buses, new backpacks filled will fresh supplies, rows and rows of lockers ready to be organized and personalized, and homerooms filled with desks awaiting a new crop of students ready to begin a new school year. 

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Topics: Penn Foster News & Events, Industry News

FAPSC 2014: A Reminder of Why We Do What We Do

Posted by Steve Copacino on 8/9/14 11:00 AM

Last week, I traveled to Aventura, Florida to take part in the 2014 Florida Association of Private Schools and Colleges (FAPSC) Annual Conference. Over 350 administrators and educators from private sector colleges were at the conference, a mini-APSCU of sorts. I had the chance to speak with many attendees, and there seemed to be a common theme:  what really matters is the student, and helping create opportunities for them to find success in life.

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Topics: High School Completion, Penn Foster News & Events, Industry News, College Enrollment & Retention

Improving the Local Community with Better Job Paths for At-Risk Youth

Posted by Ray McNulty on 8/8/14 10:00 AM

Gaining a diploma was once a rite of passage and an open door to realized dreams and seized opportunities. However, the rewards of a standard college education are no longer outweighing the costs of heavy debt and lack of job opportunities. While college may be the right fit for some, many of today’s diploma holders lack the necessary skill set to fulfill the growing job market of trade-specific jobs. Instead of thriving from education, 40 percent of attendees at a four-year college drop out before completing their degree.1 Luckily, the education sector offers a variety of cost-effective options for post-high school career success—options that offer targeted learning for a first step toward a future of achievements.

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Topics: Employee Retention, Opportunity Youth

Back to Basics: Increase Employee Loyalty Through a Commitment to Education

Posted by Dara Warn on 8/7/14 9:00 AM

As the economy regains strength, the turnover epidemic is experiencing an all-time high and experts predict the future holds an even greater global talent exodus. Unlike the workplace landscape of generations past, employee loyalty is contingent on day-to-day happenings. The average employee turnover rate is predicted to rise to 23.4 percent by 2018, according to CareerBuilder.com. This statistic represents 192 million separations and shows that the days of employee-company loyalty are waning.1 Among the industries hit with heavy turnover rates are retail and food service, where lackluster wages deter staying power.

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Topics: Industry News, Employee Retention, Employers

3 Ways to Foster Positive Interaction Between At-Risk Youth and Their Local Communities

Posted by Ray McNulty on 8/5/14 9:00 AM

Guiding youth toward greatness is central to the well-being of a community. In neighborhoods plagued with crime, truancy, and violence, circumstantial hardships build barriers that block visions of a brighter future. Leading disillusioned adolescents who are burdened by adversity takes added diligence to break past the psychological consequences of absent parents, abusive households, and negative peer influences.

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Topics: Dropout Crisis, Opportunity Youth, Youth Organizations

Institute of Technology and Penn Foster: A Partnership Success Story

Posted by Douglas Carlson on 8/4/14 4:38 PM

"I got a diploma! It was my greatest achievement." – Nina, IOT and Penn Foster high school graduate

"I'm in college now. I never thought I'd be in college so soon, and I feel pretty confident about my future now." – Willie, IOT and Penn Foster high school graduate

"I'm not stopping. I'm definitely not going to stop. I'm looking at my options for my associate's. I'm definitely interested in staying with IOT, and they have an HR program that I'm interested in." – George, IOT and Penn Foster high school graduate

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Topics: High School Completion, Penn Foster News & Events, College Enrollment & Retention


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