June 29, 2012
American Student Assistance Takes on Vital College Planning Role in Massachusetts
Underserved Students Will Continue to Receive Practical Help on Planning and Paying for College
BOSTON, MA June 29, 2012 – American Student Assistance®, the Boston-based nonprofit that empowers college students and alumni to successfully manage and repay their student loan debt, announced today it has assumed management of TERI’s (The Education Resources Institute, Inc.) College Planning Services, ensuring that 25,000 Massachusetts students and families annually will continue to receive free help with planning and paying for college.
“A college-educated workforce has never been more important to our nation than in today’s global economy,” said Paul Combe, ASA President. “Yet in the face of rising college costs and a tumultuous economy, more students than ever, especially those who are economically and educationally disadvantaged, need assistance navigating the college admissions and financial aid process. ASA is undertaking the commitment to continue these College Planning Services because, in times like these, our communities cannot afford to lose this essential public service.”
Under the terms of the agreement initiated by TERI, ASA will take on operation of TERI’s College Access Programs and College Planning Centers, located in Boston, Brockton, and Chelsea, Massachusetts, where education advisors provide free, one-on-one guidance and resources to make planning and paying for college as simple as possible. The programs include TRIO, Talent Search and Upward Bound, GEAR UP, and the Success Boston initiative.
The transfer has been approved by both organizations’ Boards of Directors, the Massachusetts Attorney General and several grantors that provide grant funding for the programs’ operation, including the U.S. Department of Education. Thirty-six TERI College Planning staff have joined ASA to provide continuity and ensure no disruption in service to students and families.
ASA has had a long-standing commitment to the Planning Centers. In 1984, ASA founded the original College Planning Center (then the Higher Education Information Center) at the Boston Public Library in Copley Square before providing a grant to TERI for the Center’s continued operation. In recent years ASA also has provided Education Debt/Financial Aid Advisors to help staff the Centers.
TERI, a nonprofit private student loan guarantor, was created with original funding by ASA in 1985. Under the agreement finalized today, ASA will assume only TERI’s College Planning Centers and grant-funded programs and no other part of TERI’s operations.
“These College Planning Services are a natural extension of ASA’s public purpose work to help students make better college financing and student loan decisions,” said Combe. “We hope to expand and improve the Services’ reach in the future by creating greater awareness of them in the community and leveraging the power of the Web to efficiently serve even more students and families.”
About American Student Assistance
American Student Assistance is a private nonprofit whose public purpose mission is to empower students and alumni to successfully manage and repay their college loan debt. We do this by providing student loan education and enabling the development of financial competencies through the use of innovative web-based tools and trusted, neutral advice”all free of charge to students and alumni. Through a game-changing educational membership program called “SALT,” we equip students and alumni with money skills for life so they reduce their student loan debt, improve student loan repayment outcomes, and increase their overall financial empowerment. Established in 1956 and based in Boston, ASA employs approximately 450 associates and has been recognized by the Boston Business Journal and Boston Globe as one of the region’s best places to work. Visit www.asa.org or call 617.728.4631 for more information.