New State Data on Segal AmeriCorps Education Award Payments

In our continuing efforts demonstrate the impact of national service, we are pleased to share a new dataset showing Segal AmeriCorps Education Award Payments by State since 1994.

For more than two decades, AmeriCorps has helped more than a half million Americans pursue their dream of higher education. AmeriCorps alumni have used more than $2.4 billion in AmeriCorps education awards to pay for college or technical school or to repay student loans. That figure includes more than $1 billion in student loan repayments.

Given the central role of the education award to the AmeriCorps experience and the importance of pursuing higher education in a global economy, is important to tell the story of the AmeriCorps education award. We have widely shared the amount earned by AmeriCorps alums in our fact sheets, State Profiles, and other venues. We are now working on ways to highlight the other side of the story - how education award dollars are used.

This new state-by state data is part of that effort and we hope you find it useful in your education and outreach efforts. We will be working over the summer to produce an even more detailed dataset showing state and institution total of all payments to specific higher education and loan-servicing organizations since 1994. This full dataset will be especially helpful to get more colleges to match the education award.

Using and Amplifying this Dataset

May is a great time to share this data, given this is the month when most college graduations occur and when high school seniors decide on their post-secondary education plans for the fall. News media will be covering stories about college graduations, and millions of students and their families are talking about how they will pay for higher education.

Here are some ideas for using and amplifying this data:

  • First, view the data on our website or go to our Open Data platform to download or create visualizations of the dataset. It shows payments as a total and broken down by type (tuition payment vs. loan repayment) and the number of individuals making each type of payment.
  • Share your state total with your Governor, other elected officials, and higher education leaders to show how AmeriCorps is expanding educational opportunity and bringing resources to their states, districts, and cities. Below are talking points that can be tailored with your state data and examples.
  • Use your website and social media to highlight state data on how AmeriCorps makes college more affordable. Sample tweets and Facebook posts are attached, along with a social media graphic. We just amplified the national level data:
    @AmeriCorps Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/americorps/posts/1472951696090648
    @AmeriCorps Twitter: https://twitter.com/AmeriCorps/status/863077815083782144
    @NationalService Twitter: https://twitter.com/NationalService/status/863080061691416577
  • Do a press release with your state data and examples of AmeriCorps alums and how they have used their Segal AmeriCorps Education Awards to pay for higher education. Pitch to higher education reporters covering college graduations or financing. CNCS will distribute a national press release next week.
  • Use the data to appeal to colleges and universities to match the education award.

AmeriCorps: Increasing College Access and Affordability

  • Higher education is the single-most important investment that Americans can make in their future, increasing their potential earnings and lowering their risk of unemployment.
  • For more than two decades, AmeriCorps has helped hundreds of thousands of Americans pursue their dream of higher education. Like the G.I. Bill, AmeriCorps is based on a simple idea: when you serve your country, you get help to pay for college.
  • In exchange for a year of full-time service, AmeriCorps members earn a Segal AmeriCorps Education Award equivalent to the amount of a Pell Grant that can be used to pay for college or technical school or to pay back student loans.
  • Since 1994, AmeriCorps alumni have earned more than $3.3 billion in Segal AmeriCorps Education Awards to help pay for college or pay back student loans.
  • AmeriCorps alums have used $2.4 billion in education awards to pursue higher education, including $1 billion to repay student loans at a time of rising college costs.
  • While they serve, AmeriCorps members can postpone loan payments and have their interest payments covered. Since 1994, CNCS has made more than $93.6 million in interest forbearance payments.
  • More than 180 colleges and universities across the country actively recruit talented AmeriCorps alumni for their reputation of perseverance, drive, and citizenship by offering scholarship or matching tuition funding for AmeriCorps alums.

Please let me know if you have questions or suggestions about this data and how to use it. Thank you!


Sandy Scott

Sandy Scott
Senior Advisor to the CEO and
State Commission Liaison
Corporation for National and Community Service
Work: 202-606-6724
Mobile: 202-355-2173
Email: sscott@cns.gov
Web: NationalService.gov

Published Date: 
May 12, 2017
Grantee Type: 
State Commission
Subject/Category: 
Member Benefits
Resource
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