Returning/Adult Student

Are you a student who previously attended college and wants to return to school? Or maybe you’re a first-time college student who graduated from high school and went straight into the workforce. Perhaps you’re first looking to earn your high school credential? Whether you think of yourself as an “adult learner” or “nontraditional student,” here are some items to consider as you plan your next steps.

There is help available! Visit our Related Links page for resources to help you transition back to school.

Earning a High School Credential

If you need to earn your high school equivalency, contact your local adult education center or learn more about the HiSet. HiSet has replaced the GED as the high school equivalency exam in Maine.

Researching Careers

Research careers to help you get started. For further exploration, complete a self-directed career exploration/assessment profiler.

Choosing a College

When choosing a school, it will be important to consider location, the flexibility of the class schedule and the availability of resources to help you succeed. FAME has a Maine college search that provides a quick view of schools in Maine to help you get started.

When researching schools, find out about a Prior Learning Assessment. A Prior Learning Assessment is also sometimes referred to as a PLA. A Prior Learning Assessment may allow you to earn course credits for experiences gained outside postsecondary education. Reducing the total number of courses you take to earn your degree will help you reach your goal more quickly and will lower your college expenses.

Career Planning and College Application Assistance

If you need help with the college preparation, application or transition process, learn more about the assistance available through these programs:

  • Maine College Transitions is a complete program that includes career planning, academic preparation, financial aid assistance, college planning and ACCUPLACER testing, all delivered through local adult education programs.
  • Maine Educational Opportunity Center (MEOC) is committed to assisting adults wishing to re-enter a formal education setting. Funded to serve traditionally under-represented adults, the majority of MEOC participants are of the first generation in their families to go to college.

Paying for College

Paying for college is generally the same for students entering college from high school or adults returning later in life. The process for applying for financial aid and researching scholarships is similar. However, there are a few considerations for nontraditional students as they think about paying for college.