Louisville, KY

Destination Degree HTML Map

Academic Milestones


Certificate or Diploma

Be college-ready

Student is prepared to enroll in credit-bearing courses or has enrolled in necessary developmental courses

Measure and Benchmark Scores:

ACT: English (18+), math (19+), reading (20+), science (TBD)
SAT: writing (430+), math (460+), reading (470+)
COMPASS: English (74+), math (36+), reading (85+)
KYOTE: English (6+), math (22+), Algebra (14+), reading (20+)

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Stay on track to graduation

Most certificates require 30 credit hours and take full-time students a year to complete

To graduate on time, full-time students should complete at least 15 credits a semester, or 30 a year. Part-time students should take 6-9 credit hours per semester, or 15 a year.

How to stay on track

Create and follow an academic plan

Meet with your academic advisor regularly (at least twice per semester)

Take necessary prerequisite courses

Declare your program/major early

Complete required coursework

If interested in pursuing an associate or bachelor’s degree, visit the Transfer Center early and often

On track resources

Academic Support Services

Transfer Center/ Services

Student Support Services

Power Skill Development – coping skills #1 predictor of student success

KHEAA Surviving College Guide

The Facts

Most full-time students take less than 15 credit hours and don’t finish on time, adding the costs of extra semesters and increasing the chance that life circumstances will get in the way of completing a degree.

15 to Finish is a campaign that encourages Kentucky college students to graduate on time. 15 to Finish

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Support & success

Adult learners are no longer the “non-traditional student” on many campuses. Convenient programs and support services are available at many colleges to meet adult-learner needs.

On Track Resources

Adult Student Center/Services

Engage in active learning with cohort

Research adult-friendly programs (nights, weekends, etc)

KHEAA Guide for Adults Returning to School


41% of undergraduate students in Louisville are over age 25 – and half of all community college students are adult

Research shows the top three reasons adults choose to complete a college degree or certificate:

  1. Personal satisfaction
  2. To be a role model for their children
  3. To increase their earning potential

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Stay on Track

Earn credential, certification or diploma

Understand student loan repayment

Know How to Transfer

Success Planning Milestones

Starting College

There are several steps to take before the first day of class to start off strong.

On Track Activities

Ensure you are in good standing with the admissions and financial aid office

Attend new student orientation

Enroll in a First-Year Experience course

Register for classes

On Track Resources

The Facts

16.8% of JCPS students who intend to go to college the fall after graduation do not enroll due to uncertainty about finances, work-school conflicts, lack of family support, and/or lack of attention to summer college planning—this is called “summer melt.”

Summer melt disproportionately affects first-generation college students.

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Affording College

Grants, scholarships and student loans are all available to help cover the cost of college.

On Track Activities

File FAFSA on October 1st (or as early as possible) each year for maximum state grants

While filing the FAFSA be sure to use the IRS data retrieval tool to include accurate income information. 

About 1/3 of students are flagged for “FAFSA verification” and will need to provide additional documentation to their selected college in order to receive financial aid

Check with the financial aid office of your college to make sure you are in good standing before classes begin

On Track Resources

55K Scholarship Database

Net Price Comparison of Louisville-area College and Universities

Kentucky Higher Education Assistance Authority (KHEAA)

Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

KentuckianaWorks College Access Center (KCAC) – for assistance filing FAFSA

How to rehabilitate defaulted student loans

The Facts

71% of students who file a FAFSA are awarded financial aid

In KY, $14.7 million in grants were given to Louisville students

Students meeting eligibility requirements can receive $5,645 from a Pell Grant and an additional $1,900 per year from a KY CAP grant – that’s $7,545 per year

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Create & follow career plan

Students who connect work experience to their degree gain real-world skills and connect to local employers for long-term employment.

On Track Activities

Research the job growth fields projected in Louisville by KentuckianaWorks

Explore careers through job shadows, informational interviews and online research

Identify the relevant majors that align with your career interests

Pursue internships, experiential learning and apprenticeships to build your network and prepare for the workforce

Transition out of college

Enact career plan
Continue Education.