WSCC Director of Financial Aid Publishes Blog, Presents at National Meeting

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20140724shannonamandaMARIETTA, Ohio (July 22, 2014) – Washington State Community College's (WSCC) Director of Financial Aid, Shannon Venezia, published a blog post in The Chronicle for Higher Learning online journal and along with Amanda Herb, Vice President of Enrollment and Student Success, presented "The Challenge of Rural Students: Best Practices" at the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators' annual meeting. Approximately 2500 financial aid administrators from around the country gathered for the meeting in Nashville, TN. Shannon and Amanda's presentation was an exploration of two components. It involved some background on rural students: patterns most commonly found in rural students (one of the least likely groups to complete the FAFSA, less likely to be college ready, typically make less money in similar jobs when compared to their suburban counterparts), and some best practices. Many of the meeting attendees were practitioners, so Shannon and Amanda offered ideas and opened the session for discussion. Shannon has found that research supports that "work study is an important part of persistence...it offers students a connection to the institution and a reason to be on campus."

Shannon has been researching financial aid and rural students for her doctoral degree. Her studies are geared toward discovering ways colleges can assist rural students in finishing school. Ms. Venezia feels "rural students are an understudied group of students...they are a great student population but there's still so much to learn about their financial aid patterns and how or why they persist to graduation." Her blog post titled "To Help Rural Students, Provide Them With Campus Jobs," explains the difficulties rural students face in financing a post-secondary education and how providing those students with campus jobs can be beneficial. To read Shannon's blog post, visit http://chronicle.com/blogs/headcount/to-help-rural-students-provide-them-with-campus-jobs/38539.

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