Evaluators Meet with HACM to Discuss ROSS for Education Program

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Recently evaluators from the U.S. General Services Administration’s Office (GSA) of Evaluation Sciences and the U.S. Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) Policy Development and Research team visited the Housing Authority (HACM) to interview employees involved with HUD’s Resident Opportunity and Self-Sufficiency (ROSS) for Education program. HACM has been administering the program since August 2017.

ROSS for Education, also known as Project SOAR (Students + Opportunities + Achievements = Results), is a program intended to expand educational services to youth living in HUD-assisted housing. Research shows there are large gaps in college attendance by family income that are not driven by level of preparation. A key barrier to college attendance is that low-income youth are least likely to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) even though they are most in need of financial aid.

The ROSS for Education program provides grant funding to public housing authorities to deploy education navigators to provide individualized assistance to public housing youth between the ages of 15-20 and their families in FAFSA completion, financial literacy and college readiness, post-secondary program applications and post-acceptance assistance.

Next month, the evaluators will provide feedback on best practices for the program. HACM will then look at how it can implement new processes into the project for this academic year.

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