Frequently Asked Questions
School Counselors & Other Educators
Our school already subscribes to college planning tools. How is CollegeBound Journey different from those tools?
Current statistics show that only 19% of Native American students are matriculating to any form of post-high school education or training. One of our consultants has spent over a decade working specifically with Native American students. One of her students used a popular college search to identify schools that offered Dakota Language teacher programs. That search produced zero matches. Imagine the message that student received and how many Native students have similar stories.
CollegeBound Journey is designed as a tool of equity. Our vision was to create a college planning tool that will increase Native student matriculation rates. We did this by constructing a platform based on Native American cultural considerations. If your school is committed to supporting Native American students towards college, CollegeBound Journey is an essential tool.
What unique, cultural considerations do Native students have in regards to college planning?
The American Indian College Fund published an amazing paper on this very subject called Creating Visibility and Healthy Learning Environments for Native Americans in Higher Education. Some aspects that need to be considered include creating cultural, community spaces, embedding Native academic programming, providing Native student centers, designating living and learning communities, offering Native language courses and cultural activities, and many other considerations. Financial aid, tuition waivers, and scholarship identification are also very important concepts.
Without acknowledging these types of cultural considerations, college counselors may inadvertently guide Native students towards inappropriate college choices, which can cause college dropout rates to increase. Many of the cultural aspects listed above are not searchable on most college planning platforms. This is why CollegeBound Journey is so essential. We place culture in the forefront of college planning and not an aside. Our college search, scholarship search, and pre-college /summer program search all revolve around culture considerations.
The internet lists multiple college resources for Native students. Can’t college counselors and educators just use this information?
The internet is a wonderful resource, if the information is accurate. For example, there is a Native American tuition waiver document floating around the internet. This document is around 10 years old. Since that time, multiple colleges now offer tuition waivers for Native American students. Additionally, many states have implemented Native American tuition waivers for Native students who choose to attend their state schools. CollegeBound Journey keeps abreast of these opportunities and updates the platform continually.
Another example is scholarships. One can type “Native American Scholarships” within any internet search engine. The results may provide 5-10 scholarship opportunities; however, our platform contains over 500 opportunities based on Native status. Also, our scholarship search permits users to search scholarships based on enrollment status, descendent status, or self-identification status.
Three times a year, we verify the information in the platform with colleges, scholarship providers, and pre-college/summer program sponsors. This enables the users to always have the most up-to-date information for college planning.
Tell us more about the cost of the product and what is included.
CollegeBound Journey is available to schools/organizations under a bundle package. The bundle includes 25 user accounts, which one is an administrator. Additional account can be purchased after the initial bundle. The accounts can be distributed to other counselors, staff, students, or families. Each user has their own log in information and can only view their own stored information.
Users can complete unlimited college searches, scholarship searches, and pre-college/summer program searches. Also, users can save important information into a “saved information” folder for later viewing.
The cost for schools/organization is $500 for the first 25 accounts, and $20 for each additional account. The subscription is good for one year from the date of purchase. If your school or organization does not have a PCard (credit card), please contact us via phone of email to process a purchase order.
What future elements are being considered for the platform?
After the initial roll out to schools and organizations, we will be working on more elements to the platform. In the works are counselor lesson plans that utilize the CollegeBound Journey platform and that align to ASCA standards. We will also be rolling out supplemental services for schools, including web-based college and career counseling for Native American students.
In the future, we hope to offer a scholarship to give back to the community. We are very open to suggestions from our colleagues and partners. Please feel free to connect with us by completing our Contact form, emailing us, or calling us.