Unemployed use time off to go back to school for free

New Jersey public colleges are tossing lifelines through free tuition programs. Recently unemployed residents are using state grants and tuition waiver programs to switch careers and improve their credentials.

News 12 Staff

Feb 5, 2009, 12:44 AM

Updated 5,637 days ago

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New Jersey public colleges are tossing lifelines through free tuition programs.
Recently unemployed residents are using state grants and tuition waiver programs to switch careers and improve their credentials. The non-traditional college students say the program is giving them a leg up.
"You really have to look at every opportunity as a chance to better yourself and to move forward," says Regina Powell, a single mother. After being laid off from an administration position with an electric company, Powell contacted the state labor department, which helped her go back to school for a degree in desktop publishing.
Powell's post-pink slip attitude is becoming increasingly popular.
"We're already getting more inquiries," says Middlesex Community College career services manager Charlotte Quigley. "We're seeing people come back even if they're in the same field to acquire those degree credentials that will get them the career opportunities that they're looking for."
Potential students are being advised to visit one-stop career centers for help applying.


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