Home » 18 Tips for Postsecondary Students Navigating COVID-19

18 Tips for Postsecondary Students Navigating COVID-19

Dear students,

The COVID-19 outbreak has brought uncertainty, anxiety, and instability to our state and world. We understand that you, the generation of students juggling more responsibilities than any generation before them, are caught in the middle.

Advance Vermont developed a resource guide for today’s students in Vermont, covering four important topics: making ends meet, securing food and housing, maintaining good health, and learning remotely. We see you, we see what is being asked of you, and we hope that these resources make this time just a little bit easier.

Advance Vermont Team

Illustration by Michelle Sayles

Making Ends Meet

A full 80 percent of today’s postsecondary education and training students in Vermont work, and 1 in 4 works full time. As non-essential workers across the state are facing reduced hours and lay-offs, we imagine many of you could use financial support. There are a number of strategies to help you pay your bills.

Receive temporary income by applying for unemployment insurance and a $600 benefit

Student parents can apply for assistance through WIC or Reach Up

Contact your financial aid office regarding emergency financial aid programs

Learn about stimulus rebates and file your tax returns for tax refunds
(explore these 
tax credits: AOTC, LLC,

Learn more from VSAC about grant and student loan assistance, plus other helpful resources

Securing Food and Housing

We know that 35 percent of today’s students face food insecurity, and 33 percent face housing insecurity. To make matters more difficult, we also know many students lost your access to housing and meal plans provided by your institutions when campuses closed. Luckily, people are working across the state to ensure that you can meet your basic needs.

Apply for 3SquaresVT benefits to help pay for food (expanded access during COVID-19 emergency)

Find a food bank near you and call to learn about their current services

Students formerly in foster care can contact their Youth Development Program coordinator

Students returning to an unsafe home environment can get help

Maintaining Your Health

It is vitally important to reduce your risk of getting COVID-19 by washing your hands and practicing social distancing. Beyond reducing the risk of illness, there are other ways to take care of your mental and physical health while staying at home. 

Learn about COVID-19 in
Vermont through
official updates and
multilingual videos

If uninsured, explore Medicaid
or Vermont Health Connect
(expanded access during
COVID-19 emergency)

Practice social
distancing, wash your
hands, and stay in
touch with loved ones

Learning Remotely

On top of everything else, many of you are learning how to learn remotely. Moving programs online has allowed you to stay safe while continuing your education and training. Learning from a new type of classroom creates a new sets of challenges but there are a host of supports to help you adapt.

Find a free, public WiFi
connection that you can
access from within a
vehicle in the parking lot

Explore special connectivity options from internet, cable, and mobile carriers

Find online
educational resources
to support online and
remote learning

Stay connected by reaching out to your teachers, advisers, and mentors often

Discover tips and
tricks for success
in an online course

Additional Resources

Learn More about the newly passed CARES Act

On March 27, Congress passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which provides additional financial support to those who lost work due to COVID-19. Learn more here

Vermont COVID-19 Crowdsourced Resource List

This extensive collection of resources includes information and external links for all kinds of help: personal health, finances, community support, official COVID-19 information, and much more. The document is clearly laid out in the table of contents and Vermonters across the state are regularly adding to the list of resources. Learn more here.

Statewide and Regional Groups Providing Community Support

This spreadsheet includes regional and statewide organizations that are serving Vermonters in their communities. The list includes organizations to check in with for help with a variety of needs, including securing food and housing, getting mental health support, or connecting with volunteer groups. Learn more here.

Surviving COVID-19: A #RealCollege Guide for Students

The Hope Center for College, Community, and Justice released a great resource for today’s students navigating the COVID-19 emergency. It provides national resources for securing food and housing, supporting mental health, and more. Learn more here.


VSAC’s adult counselors in the EOC program are available for free phone appointments to assist adults thinking about postsecondary and short-term training programs and how to navigate online learning options. Call 877-961-4369 for a free appointment.


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