Tools and Resources
College Comparison Tools
The following resources can be used by prospective students to compare and learn more about colleges.
A consumer tool that provides school information to include tuition and fees, retention and graduation rates, use of financial aid, student loan default rates and features a cost calculator and school comparison tool.
- Go to College Navigator.
- Enter the school name in the box in the upper left corner. You may also search for a list of schools by entering the State, ZIP Code, Major, Level of Award, Institution Type, or search using other options.
- Select "Show results".
- Mouse over the "i" icon or click on the school name to see the profile information.
- Click on any of the areas you would to learn more about.
A consumer planning tool and resource to assist prospective students and their families as they evaluate options in selecting a school.
- Go to College Scorecard.
- Search for a college by entering the name. You may also search for a list of colleges by selecting criteria such as the College Location, Type of College, My Area of Interest or Popular Criteria.
- Press Enter to see the school information or the list of schools from your search.
- Click on any of the options to learn more about the college.
College Financing Plan
A model aid award letter designed to simplify the information that prospective students receive about costs and financial aid so they can easily compare institutions and make informed decisions about where to attend school. Your College Financing Plan is available after you submit a FAFSA and your financial aid is packaged.
- Go to the MyHarper Portal.
- Select the Finances tab.
- In My Financial Aid Info, select View my College Financing Plan.
- Select the appropriate aid year from the drop down box.
Paying for College
A web page which can be used by prospective students to enter the names of up to three schools and receive detailed financial information on each one and to enter actual financial aid award information.
- Go to Paying for College.
- Click on "Compare financial aid offers".
- Click on "Get started".
- Enter the "School name" in the box. Select the school name when it appears.
- Check the box if you "have received a financial aid offer from this school."
- Select the "Program Type" and then the "Program Length" from the drop down box. Click "Continue".
- Answer the "Residency" and Housing situation" questions. Click "Continue".
- Type in your financial aid offer, if you received one.
- Click "Add another school". You may compare up to three schools at a time.
Resources and Support Services
Veteran Mental Health Services
If you are interested in learning more about some of the common mental health issues facing Veterans and their families, this website is a great place to start. It provides links to basic information about common mental health conditions such as Depression and PTSD, as well as information and resources designed to help specific groups of Veterans such as women, those who have recently been discharged from active duty, and those who are looking for job training and housing assistance. https://www.mentalhealth.va.gov/
The After Deployment website is a behavioral health resource supporting service members, their families, and veterans with common post-deployment challenges. Their mission is to provide self-care solutions targeting PTSD, depression, and other behavioral health challenges.
The Real Warriors website is part of the Real Warriors Campaign launched by the Defense Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury (DCoE) to promote the processes of building resilience, facilitating recovery and supporting reintegration of returning service members, veterans and their families. The site contains information for a number of audiences including Veterans, Active Duty, Families and Health Professionals. https://www.realwarriors.net/
Specific and valuable information on recovery from mental health problems is at https://www.mentalhealth.va.gov/mentalhealthrecovery.asp.
Students who served in the Iraq War speak out about the emotional challenges of adjusting to life back at home and the importance of finding support. http://www.halfofus.com/video/?videoID=47&chapterID=1
Student Veterans of America (SVA) is a coalition of student veterans groups from college campuses across the United States. SVA works to develop new student groups, coordinate between existing student groups, and advocate on behalf of student veterans at the local, state, and national level. http://www.studentveterans.org/
Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America is the nation’s first and largest group dedicated to the Troops and Veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the civilian supporters. https://iava.org/
The National Resource Directory provides wounded, ill and injured Service Members and Veterans, their families, families of the fallen and those who support them with a web-based directory of valuable resources. It delivers information on, and access to, the full range of medical and non-medical services and resources needed to achieve their personal and professional goals across the transitions from recovery to rehabilitation to community reintegration. https://www.nationalresourcedirectory.gov/
One of the most important ways to access VA health care is My HealtheVet, the free, online Personal Health Record that empowers Veterans to become informed partners in their health care. With My HealtheVet, America’s Veterans can access trusted, secure, and current health and benefits information as well as record, track and store important health and military history information at their convenience. https://www.myhealth.va.gov/
While many veterans return from deployment without problems, some experience psychological concerns. Just talking to someone can help, even for a little while. If you or someone you care about is in crisis, call the Veterans Suicide Prevention Hotline at: 1-800-273-TALK (8255) and press 1. Your call is free and confidential.
Veterans (and family members or friends) can access Veterans Chat through the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline website. Veterans Chat enables Veterans, their families and friends to go online where they can anonymously chat with a trained VA counselor. If the chats are determined to be a crisis, the counselor can take immediate steps to transfer the chatter to the VA Suicide Prevention Hotline, where further counseling and referral services are provided and crisis intervention steps can be taken. https://www.veteranscrisisline.net/
The NCPTSD website contains in-depth information on PTSD and traumatic stress. They answer commonly asked questions about the effects of trauma, including basic information about PTSD and other common reactions. You can find out about treatment and coping. https://www.ptsd.va.gov/
Traumatic Brain Injury & Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
Traumatic Brain Injury and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder have been called the signature wounds of the Iraqi and Afghanistan conflicts. The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs at the federal and state levels is focusing on an environment where early detection and early intervention support is practiced to make the transition to civilian life as easy and productive as possible for both the veteran and the family. All Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF)/Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) veterans are encouraged to take advantage of the Veterans Administration Health Care System. The VA is offering the OIF/OEF veteran five years of VA health care regardless of financial or health status. Call your nearest veteran service office for assistance.
Illinois Health Programs
If you have served in any combat zone, Vet Centers are in your community to help you and your family with readjustment counseling and outreach services. Vet Centers offer a wide range of services to help you make a successful transition from military to civilian life. Services include -
- individual & group counseling
- marital and family counseling
- bereavement counseling for families who experience an active duty death
- employment counseling
- military sexual trauma counseling and referral
- medical & benefits referrals
Go to http://www.vetcenter.va.gov/ for more information.
At each VA Medical Center nationwide, a Women Veterans Program Manager is designated to assist women Veterans. She can help coordinate all the services you may need, from primary care to medical services to Mental Health and Sexual Abuse Counseling. Women Veterans who are interested in receiving care at VA should contact the nearest VA Medical Center and ask for the Women Veterans Program Manager. Go to https://www.womenshealth.va.gov/ for more information.
The VHA offers tools and information to help you reach your optimal health. Tools like My HealtheVet enable you to manage your medical priorities through an online prescription refill service, personal health journal, and links to Federal and VA benefits. Use the health support services listed below to maintain your physical and mental wellness outlined through the Veterans Health Administration at http://www.va.gov/health/programs/.
Employment & Educational Benefit Support Services
The Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) provides a trained Veterans representative to help Veterans receive training and job placement assistance. IDES and its partner agencies have a variety of resources that can help veterans find jobs and transition back to the civilian work force. Visit the nearest IDES office or visit: https://www2.illinois.gov/ides/individuals/Pages/Veteran_Services.aspx.
Veteran Service Officers are located throughout Illinois, some of which are located close to Harper College. The Officers are experts when it comes to federal, state and local benefits and programs for veterans. To locate the nearest office call 800-437-9824 if calling within Illinois; out-of-state 217-782-6641; or TDD 217-524-4645 or go to https://www2.illinois.gov/veterans/about-us/pages/contact-us.aspx .
Detailed information on education programs administered by the Department of Veterans Affairs. http://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill
GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government Web site at http://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill.
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