Austin Public Schools and AmeriCorps helping students transition to college

Published 6:38 am Friday, May 11, 2012

By Amy Baskin

Austin Public Schools Community Education Director

For the past three years, Austin Public Schools Adult Learning has partnered with AmeriCorps to employ a full time person devoted to helping adults gain educational skills. This partnership has strengthened the adult literacy programming and provided new opportunities for adult learners.

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Beginning in August, a new partnership will begin that will focus on high school students and adults who wish to attend college, but need extra support and skills to gain entrance to college or maintain success with college level coursework.

Austin Adult Learning currently provides a variety of classes at Riverland Community College to help students with reading, math and computer skills. Adult Learning teachers are co-teaching with Riverland instructors in Chemistry and English and offer help sessions to students who need extra support with coursework in those classes. Next year we will be adding Accuplacer Prep Math and Reading to help students prepare and successfully gain entrance into the college.

The new AmeriCorps Vista will be working with Austin High School to identify and help students who wish to go to college but lack some academic skills to gain those skills and get into college. They will continue to assist those students while they are in college in collaboration with Riverland and Austin Adult Learning by identifying educational resources to help them be successful.

Austin Public Schools is currently recruiting and looking to hire the AmeriCorps person who will partner with us next year to implement this new and exciting wraparound service for students. AmeriCorps Vista is a full time position through the Minnesota Literacy Council. A bi-weekly living allowance of $411.69 is paid during the year of service and health benefits are provided. In addition, a $5,550 education award is available upon completion of service that can be used to repay qualified student loans or used for future tuition. Federal student loan forbearance while serving and interest is paid after successful completion. Minnesota Literacy Council training and support is provided throughout the year and a variety of experience will be gained in leadership, building teams and working with community organizations.

This position will begin on July 31, but the hiring window is open now through May 18. Interested applicants must be 18 years old and possess some college. A bachelor degree is preferred, but not a requirement. For more information on this position visit the AmeriCorps web site:

Austin Adult Learning is proud to offer support to adults who wish to increase their academic skills to further their education or job opportunities. For more information on these programs contact Janice Mino at 507-460-1708