Personal Advising Sessions - Iowa College Access Network - ICAN

Personal Advising Sessions

One-on-One Personalized Advising Sessions

ICAN operates eleven Student Success Centers across Iowa that offer the opportunity to meet, one-on-one with a Student Success Advisor to help map out your path to success.

Appointments with a Success Advisor can cover the following topics and are outline by grade level ie: 9=9th grade:

ICAN will meet with your family as early as you like to discuss any number of topics or questions. ICAN's planning tools and resources begin specific focus in middle schools years, with four-year planning for high school beginning in the 8th grade.

Scheduling Your Appointment:

Online scheduling

Click the button above to schedule online or schedule by phone at (877) 272-4692. Visit the Locations section to learn more about the ICAN Student Success Center near you.


Career Assessment & Exploration Appointments (9,10,11,12)

Imagine finding your dream job and building your education and social life around that goal. Career exploration and assessment is the first step and the ICAN team can help you on that path.

Utilizing the ACT Profile interest assessment tool, an ICAN student success advisor can help you find a career pathway that fits you by discovering what really interests you and what you value most.

Assessments:

  • Identify strengths, skills and areas of interest
  • Match your results to career pathways or industries
  • Link career pathways to specific careers and salary expectations
  • Link careers to education and training requirements
  • List education requirements that will lead to potential college majors or career fields
  • Help narrow your list of potential college and training programs to those that fit your interest area and price range
     

Career Assessment Appointment (9,10,11,12)
Appointment Times: 30-60 minutes

Student will setup their free ACT Profile account and take the ACT Profile assessment. An ICAN advisor will assist in this process and do an initial assessment results review with the student.

This review will include a look at the student's Career Map and the career pathways identified by the assessment as a best fit. Student will identify a target cluster(s) to research. Student will leave with their profile login and a worksheet to complete while reviewing the career results.
 

Career Exploration Appointment (9,10,11,12)
Appointment Times: 30-60 minutes

Students will work with an ICAN student success advisor on specific areas of their career assessment results and begin mapping out specific careers with the identified pathways to research including education requirements, recommended high school courses, and potential job shadows. Discussion will surround lifestyle expectations and the ability of identified careers to help meet those goals, steps needed to reach those goals including education and training beyond high school, cost of that education and training, and the affordability based on predicted starting salaries.

Students may have a series of Career Exploration appointments as they continue to learn and reassess their interests.

 

College Exploration (9,10,11,12)
Appointment Times: 60, 90, or 120 minutes

Picking a college is one of the most important decisions you can make, and we can help you identify the factors that should weigh most in that decision.

In this advising session, or sessions depending on where you are in the process, we’ll discuss what matters to you when you picture your college and career experience and identify the factors you should research to help make your college decision.

We’ll start with the basics and discuss all your options; the different types of colleges, distance, campus facilities, and career path/college major. If you’ve already completed the ACT Profile career assessment, we’ll factor in your results as part of our discussion and begin exploring colleges based on your assessment results, aligning them with the educational requirements that will help identify programs and majors for that career field. This will help identify potential colleges that offer the programs relevant to your career interests.

As part of our work, we’ll also setup an online college search analysis profile utilizing the College Raptor tool, which we can refer back to each visit as you further develop your interests.

Tools Used:

  • ACT Profile
  • College Raptor
  • Campus Visits worksheet
  • College Checklist

 

Paying for College (9,10,11,12)
Appointment Times: 60 minutes

Possibly the most important part of college planning is having a plan to pay for college. Part of this plan is understanding all the costs associated with each school and knowing your career education budget flexibility.

In this advising session we will work through the costs associated with each college you are considering and calculate the recommended costs associated with your intended career areas. With these figures we will determine a recommended budget and talk about the options available to cover the estimated costs.

In this session we will also discuss the realities of financial aid and do a forecast of what you can expect to receive in financial aid, which will then be figured into the overall college budget.

Tools Used:

  • Debt Reality Worksheet
  • Prepare to Pay for College Worksheet
  • ACT Profile
  • College Raptor
  • Game Plan
  • ROCI
  • Compare College Costs Worksheet
  • FAFSA4Caster

 

College Visits (10,11,12)
Appointment Times: 60 minutes

Campus visits allow you to get an up-close look at colleges and experience a feel for life on campus. A college visit session is an expansion on college exploration and will build off the previous discussion and tool analysis results.

In this advising session we will begin identifying the colleges and universities from your College Raptor profile that align with your interests and begin the College Checklist analysis to determine if the next step is a campus visit.

We will also discuss how a campus visit works, the best times to go, how to setup your visit, and what questions and experiences you should request on each visit.

Tools Used:

  • College Raptor
  • Campus Visits worksheet
  • College Checklist
  • College Selection & Applications (11,12)

College Selection & Applications (11,12)
Appointment Times: 60 minutes

There are many factors that go into college selection. If you’ve been meeting with an ICAN advisor you’ve likely been talking about career and college exploration, you’ve assessed your options, and perhaps even taken a few campus visits.

In this advising session we will take these conversations and visits and determine a short list of colleges you want to apply to based on your campus visit experiences and the merits of each school in regards to your assessment results and college desires.

We will look at the requirements of each college admission process and determine of list of next steps and deadlines. We will also begin discussing the financial aid process timeline. If enough time is available, this session could be combined with a Paying for College session specific to the short list of colleges determined.

Tools Used:

  • College Raptor
  • College Checklist
  • College Visit Checklist (bring completed worksheet)
  • Make Informed Decisions About Your Future worksheet

 

Scholarship Process (11,12)
Appointment Times: 60 minutes

Scholarships can play a big part in making college more affordable, but the process is just that, a process. There is nothing easy about getting scholarships; it’s a lot of time and effort but the rewards can be substantial.

In the Scholarship Process advising session, we will go over scholarships searches, the application process, and what it takes to win. During the session your advisor will go over the different areas that hold potential for scholarships, the best approach to searches, applications, essays, letters of recommendation, and how to stay organize through the whole process.

This session can include practice interviews and essay review.

Tools Used:

  • ICAN Scholarship Database
  • Scholarship Worksheet
     

CSS Profile (12)
Appointment Times: 2 hours

The CSS PROFILE (College Scholarship Service Profile), is an application allowing college students to apply for financial aid. It gives select institutions a closer look into the finances of a student and family. It is much more detailed than the FAFSA.

The CSS Profile asks questions about the financial status of the student and the student's parents. The information the student provides in the CSS Profile is then sent to colleges or universities that the student specifies.

Along with the FAFSA, the CSS Profile is the most common financial aid application that students in the United States fill out.

In this advising session we will help you complete your CSS Profile. This session takes approximately two hours. While ICAN does not charge for our completion assistance, there is a charge to complete the CSS Profile itself and you will need to pay online during the advising session to complete the process.

 

FAFSA Completion (12)
Appointment Times: 45-90 minutes

  • One New/ Renewal FAFSA – 45 minutes
  • Two New/Renewal FAFSAs – 60 minutes
  • Three New/Renewal FAFSAs – 60-90 minutes

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, is the form developed by the US Department of Education that is used by colleges and universities to determine how much financial aid a student qualifies for. The FAFSA is the only form that enables students to apply for assistance from the federal and state governments, as is required by many colleges and universities for their financial aid process as well.

At ICAN we understand that for many the FAFSA is a daunting task. In our FAFSA Completion Appointments we strive to make the process as painless and stress-free as possible, while fulling explaining each detail of the form, the results and answering any questions you have about financial aid and the college planning process in general.

During your appointment you'll sit down with a highly trained Student Success Advisor and, together, you will complete the form on the federal government's secure FAFSA website. All the information submitted is secured by the FAFSA website and ICAN does not store any of your personal information once your appointment is complete.

Once submitted your Student Success Advisor will go over your results, explain your next steps and review the process for additional scholarships. You will also have the opportunity to ask questions and get personalized planning advice throughout your appointment.

Click here to see a list of what to bring to your appointment.

Prior to your appointment, get started by setting up your FSA ID username and password. The FSA ID is used to sign the FAFSA form. Learn about the FSA ID at www.ICANsucceed.org/FSAID .

 

FAFSA/Award Letter Review (12)
Appointment Times: 60-90 minutes

While many students and parents think the FAFSA is the hardest part of the process, the real trick is understanding the results and making an informed decision about the future. Knowing how to read the award letters sent by colleges, and how to compare them apples to apples can be tricky because right now there is no standard form for an award letter.

In this advising session we’ll review each award package you’ve been offered and break them down so you can compare each school evenly and get a clear picture of what’s being offered. We’ll also talk about any gaps in funding that remain to be covered and the different options available to cover those gaps.

Part of this conversation will include a review of the estimated borrowing budget for your future career, which will help determine if a school and/or package is affordable and realistic for the career of choice.

Tools Used:

  • GamePlan
  • ROCI
  • ACT Profile
  • Award Letter Complete
     

Understanding Student Loan Options (12)
Appointment Times: 30-60 minutes

While in an ideal world no student would ever have to borrow money to cover college expenses, in reality it is very common. When faced with taking on debt to pay for college, it’s important to ensure that you are making the best and most informed decisions you can on your payment options, including selecting the right loan for your situation.

In this advising session, an advisor will review your options and talk to you about the different student loan options available. While ICAN advisors cannot tell you what loan to take, we can make sure you have all the information you need to make an informed decision.
 

Alternative Funding Options for College (11,12)
Appointment Times: 30-60 minutes

Figuring out a realistic plan to pay for college can mean looking at alternative solutions such as payment plans, work-study, a greater focus on summer work or an alternative program or school. In this session an advisor will look at the overall cost of the school you have selected, the awards you have been offered, and work with you to review all your options for filling any gaps and creating a budget for your overall college experience.

Tools Used:

  • GamePlan
  • ROCI
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