Higher Education

The Be Connected Ecosystem of Support includes ten different Areas of Focus for service members, veterans and their families. The ten areas of focus include Basic Needs, Employment, Family & Social Supports, Finances & Benefits, Higher Education, Housing & Homelessness, Legal, Mental Health & Substance Abuse, Physical Health and Spirituality.


Expanding the knowledge, skills and expertise of veterans, service members and their families through higher education to maximize learning and earning potential.


 

Even though the road through college is a tough one, the benefits and outcome, in the end, will be worth it. Take it slow, work hard, get involved, and be open-minded. Explore the topics and subjects that interest you and speak to a career advisor early on. Most importantly, enjoy it! 

Higher Education FAQs

Getting encouragement from someone who’s been through college is a great way to get some top-quality advice, especially if they are in the career field or program you want to complete. Find a friend, relative, mentor, or business figure you admire who studied at your college, in the field you’re thinking of entering, or in a similar course, and ask them about how they were successful. Explore all school options from vocational school to college, ask how you will finance your education, take vocational quizzes to find what best suits your interests/talents, and speak to a career advisor early on.
There are many scams in the higher education world, from financial aid scams to fake housing, fake credit cards, buying fake books, and buying fake diplomas online. Some websites claim you can get your diploma/ degree in a few weeks with their program, but ultimately, these are scams too. While some people seek to ‘cheat the system,’ some are vulnerable and believe the claims of a website can look legitimate. Knowledge is power. Always double check your resources with colleges, family, friends, others in the field and with the US Department of Education. If the school isn’t accredited, then it’s probably not legit.
Deadlines can sneak up on you when you are busy with classes, extracurricular activities and a social life. It’s easy to lose track and let due dates start piling up. Once you know the deadlines and dates for applications, FAFSA, etc., write them down! Planners, calendar reminders on smart devices or in an email platform are good ideas. Try setting reminders for various stages in a project, for example, a reminder to begin an application process and then a reminder for the deadline date a day or two before the actual due date. There are plenty of things to use to remember. If you struggle with technology, then seek the help of family, friends or mentors to help remind you of deadlines.
College decisions will depend on your career or educational path. For example, your career choice may only require a vocational or two years to get started. Other careers will require a four-year degree or master’s/doctorate degree. Next, determine if you want a new experience and feel comfortable leaving family and friends to go to school out of state. Some programs are only found in certain colleges out of state, while others could be in your hometown. You will also have to determine what family, military or employment commitments you have and if you can leave your state. Note that out-of-state tuition is higher than in-state, plus dorms, food, transportation, etc. Finally, decide how you will pay for school and if you will need or can work part-time or full-time, in addition to college loans or financial aid. Ultimately, you will have to choose a program that makes you happy and puts you on the path for a career you are excited about.
Always have a set of coping strategies you can use when feeling overwhelmed with school and decisions. Some stress can be considered healthy, and it pushes us to try harder to succeed. Still, mental, physical and spiritual self-care is a critical component to manage stress from becoming debilitating or anxiety. Consider self-care activities like deep breathing practices, journaling, exercise, or spiritual reflection self-care as options to calm and ground worry.

Many resources in the state of Arizona offer help, including community, government and military benefits. However, these systems can be complex and overwhelming to work through, especially when seeking a resolution to an immediate need.  Be Connected uses a resource matching tool to help find the right information and resources that best fit your situation. Please call 866-429-8387 for additional assistance.

Click to view our PDF for more information on how you can help provide Basic Needs to Arizona’s service members, veterans and their families!

Click here to view the other 10 Areas of Focus Be Connected can help with!

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Be Connected and ConnectVeterans.org are provided in partnership by:

Special thanks to the Governor’s Office of Youth, Faith and Family for their partnership and support.

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