Is becoming a pilot on your radar? The latest partnership between Vaughn College and Atlas Air’s University Pipeline Program can put you and aspiring pilots in the captain’s seat faster—with less expense—all while receiving exceptional benefits and support. Buckle up as Ron Ruggeri, online technical specialist instructor in the aviation department at Vaughn, sheds light on this exciting collaboration that can fast-track the careers of tomorrow’s pilots.

A new era of opportunity

The purpose of this program is twofold: It has been designed to grow Atlas Air’s pipeline of qualified applicants for employment in high-demand positions as well as increase career opportunities for qualified Vaughn College flight students. Through the University Pipeline Program, Atlas Air will recruit, train and hire qualified Vaughn graduates, thus affording them a new era of opportunities and benefits that can accelerate their career trajectories.

Program timeline

As you may expect, there is a structured timeline which each student must follow to ensure he or she has all the required licenses and flight hours to qualify for this opportunity. Ruggeri emphasizes the timeline students should follow:

  • In their sophomore year, students should begin their instrument rating to secure the following five licenses: private, instrument, commercial, certified flight instructor—single-engine airplane (CFIA) and certified flight instructor instrument.
  • In their senior year (or seventh semester), Ruggeri said flight students begin their CFIA and start building flight hours toward the required 1,000 hours in order to obtain their Restricted Airline Transport Pilot License (R-ATP). Notably, aspiring pilots must be at least 23 years old to be eligible for this license. And the cost for obtaining these hours is expensive: flight hours can cost up to $300 per hour, bringing the total to $300,000 for the required 1,000 hours. For this reason, Ruggeri said many students opt to instruct during this period to offset the expenses associated with their flight training.

Program requirements

To be considered for the Atlas Air Pathway program, each candidate must meet the following criteria:

  • Maintain a 3.0 grade point average
  • Not have any background check disqualifications
  • Submit an application, résumé and introduction that details his or her aviation journey and career aspirations– if applicable, applicants must continue to update their résumés and total time
  • Submit a letter of recommendation from a professor from the specific industry-affiliated program

Graduates selected to take part in the Atlas Air Pathway to Success program will be granted preferential interviews with Atlas Air. To be considered, candidates must meet these and other criteria:

  • No more than two training failures on required ratings (excluding private pilot)
  • First class medical certificate
  • Serve as a CFI for Heritage Flight Academy or other Vaughn-affiliated 141 flight training school
  • Letter of recommendation from a flight instructor and professor from the Aircraft Operations (Flight) program
  • Graduated with required academic experience for Restricted Airline Transport Pilot (R-ATP)
  • Reach R-ATP eligibility and required minimum flying experience within two years of graduation
  • Must not be part of any other airline pathway or cadet program after signing the offer letter with Atlas Air
  • Certified Flight Instructor (CFI) qualification preferred

University Pathway to Success Program benefits

Among the most exciting aspects of the program are the considerable benefits that Vaughn students will receive. If you’re still thinking about the cost of the flight hours, the next part may put your mind at ease. Check this out. Qualified and selected students may:

  • Receive 500 free hours of flight time, courtesy of Atlas Air
  • Seamlessly transition into the role of First Officer at the age of 23, flying prestigious aircraft such as the 777 or 747
  • Get promoted to Captain faster than the typical seven-year timeframe
  • Enjoy a unique work life-balance that exists in cargo flying offering a two weeks on/two weeks off schedule; plus Atlas Air covers the cost of departure seats to ensure that pilots are able to commute home to see their families

A commitment to diversity

Vaughn and Atlas Air also share a common a common commitment to diversity. Vaughn serves a diverse student body of about 1,200 students, 80 percent of whom are from under-resourced communities.

“Vaughn is so pleased to deepen our partnership with Atlas Air and provide an expanded pipeline of talented, diverse graduates who want to contribute to the company’s success,” said Dr. Sharon B. DeVivo, President and Chief Executive Officer of Vaughn College. “This is another example of Atlas’ commitment to developing, hiring and promoting aviation professionals and investing in our students—the next generation that will change the world.”

Is becoming a pilot on your radar? For complete details, and to determine eligibility, contact Ron Ruggeri at Vaughn College. You can apply to the program here.

Many high school graduates today are wondering if attending college is a worthwhile investment. They are wondering if the effort, time and money could be saved with potentially more valuable on-the-job experience. It’s best to think of the value of a college degree in terms of earning potential over time. Bachelor’s degree holders generally earn 75% more than those with just a high school diploma, according to “The College Payoff,” a report from the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce. College graduates with four-year bachelor’s degrees are also more likely to have health insurance through their jobs, contribute to a 401(k) and own a home.

Many of the careers in aviation, aeronautics and technology that Vaughn prepares students for require a certain level of training, certification or degree for entry into the field. Vaughn also sets students up for lifelong success with additional support, which we are about to dive into!

Scholarships and Financial Aid

The rising cost of college and fear of student debt are among the top reasons why students choose not to attend college. Online learning during the pandemic also made students question if a college education was worth it. At Vaughn, we recognize that attending college is an expensive undertaking, and our admissions advisers will work with you to find financial solutions that will make attending college possible based on your individual needs. After all, 90 percent of Vaughn students receive some type of financial aid, and academic excellence is recognized by awarding college scholarships to high-achieving students who wish to pursue bachelor’s degrees.

Another attractive feature for Vaughn students is the new Scholarship Universe tool, which expands scholarship opportunities even further to new and current students. Students can access the Scholarship Universe portal to see what scholarships they are eligible for, get information and deadlines, apply and check application status all in one place.

National Society of Leadership and Success

The National Society of Leadership and Success (NSLS) is the nation’s largest leadership honor society in the United States, with more than 1.5 million members and 700+ chapters nationwide and Vaughn has recently established a chapter on campus. It is the only society of its kind to have earned accreditation for its programming, which is an outstanding benefit for participating students. This milestone is due in large part to Vaughn’s long standing partnership with United Airlines whose sponsorship includes all membership fees, thus making it affordable for every qualifying Vaughn student to join. Since the NSLS chapter was established at Vaughn in March of 2022, 86 students have been formally inducted and 239 have accepted the invitation to become a member. 

NSLS inductees at Vaughn College

So, why is this big news? NSLS differentiates itself from traditional honor societies in the following ways:

  • Students must complete a step-by-step leadership development program in order to be inducted. For Vaughn students, this includes doing through the orientation and leadership training day, attending three speaker series presentations and participation in three Success Network Teams (SNTs) where students create personal goals and support each other to achieve them.
  • The curriculum offers students opportunities to develop many in-demand skills such as leadership communications and team building.
  • Additional expertise is provided for the personal development disciplines that today’s highly motivated employers are demanding.

Residence life and housing

Living on campus can make the college experience even greater! When you live and study at Vaughn, you’ll become part of a community, develop lasting friendships, have easy access to campus resources, clubs and activities. According to a national study conducted by The Association of College and University Housing Officers – International (ACUHO-I), living on campus has a profound impact on student persistence and engagement. Additionally, supporting the whole student learning and development through environmental, social, physical, intellectual, financial, emotional, spiritual and occupational opportunities is something Vaughn takes very seriously. 

Vaughn’s residence hall features all suite-style fully furnished suites with semi-private bathrooms, air conditioning, cable TV connection, high speed internet and 24/7 security while classes are in session.

Residence hall common areas include:

Vaughn students working out at residential hall gym

  • Lobby Lounge – For gatherings, gaming, streaming and just hanging out with friends.
  • Kitchen – Cooking, prepping meals, reheating and food storage. (NOTE: Meal plans are required for resident students.)
  • Multi-purpose room – Study room, presentation practice space and events.
  • Fitness Center – with spectacular views of New York City
  • Laundry facilities

The unique Vaughn student experience

College is so much more than hitting the books and cramming for exams. At Vaughn, we take the college experience to another level through a hands-on, experiential learning approach. “Learn-by-doing” opportunities give students the confidence, problem-solving, teamwork, leadership and communication skills they need to succeed in their fields of study.

Through priceless exposure to out-of-the-classroom experiences, students gain a competitive edge for success. Here are some of the exciting student experiences that Vaughn offers:Robotics club

  • Opportunities to present research, projects and papers at professional conferences and networking events
  • Internships
  • Student clubs and team competitions in areas such as uncrewed aerial vehicles, robotics, rover and aviation maintenance
  • Industry speakers
  • Professional gateway partnerships that provide career pathways for Vaughn graduates

We hope this blog has inspired you to rethink your path to college and the value a degree will bring to your career and life. Taking the first step toward your future begins with exploring your college options. At Vaughn, we offer degrees in today’s most sought-after industries. From engineering and technology to management and aviation, we have degree programs that will give you a competitive edge in today’s workforce. With so many opportunities and possibilities for your future, now is the time to see all the great things that are happening at Vaughn. Schedule a visit. Or, better yet, apply today! 

Congratulations! You’ve made the decision to go to college. Yes, there are many things to do and decisions to make, but with a little guidance, you’ll be on your way to earning your college degree.

You might be wondering if earning a college degree is really worth it – and the answer to that is yes! Over time, you’ll earn more money in your career than you would without a degree. The exact return on your college investment depends on a multitude of factors such as your college, major, career and experience level, and some careers have a higher ROI than others – such as pilots, air traffic controllers and mechanical engineers.

To help you navigate the process and stay on track, we have outlined a college admission requirements list. Hey, we already know you’re smart. Now it’s time to work smarter—not harder. So, check out this list and feel satisfied when you check things off the list!

Make a list of your reach, match and safety colleges

Now is the time to do your homework. You must now decide which colleges are on your list of safety, match and reach schools which are defined below. But don’t worry too much – your high school guidance department can help you with this, so don’t hesitate to tap into their expertise and connections. They can help you explore your options and make realistic selections based on your interests.

  • Safety colleges—With a “safety college” or institution, you have an 80 percent chance or higher of being accepted, based on your grade point average (GPA) and SAT or ACT scores. It’s important to note that there are no guarantees of acceptance to these schools. The best you can do is compare your grades and scores to the student body average.
  • Match college—A “match college” or institution is one where your GPA and scores fall within range of the college’s typical freshman class.
  • Reach college—The most difficult category, a “reach college” or institution is where your academic performance is below the 25th percentile of those admitted to the college.

Tip: Although most students will apply to their safety and match colleges, it’s important to include reach colleges on your list as well. Always give it your best shot. You honestly never know!

Apply to your top college picks

You can save time by applying to your colleges via the Common App which allows you to fill out one application and send it to several colleges that accept it. Below are a few things to do and consider as you work through the application process.

  • Confirm early decision/early action and regular application deadlines.
  • Confirm if an admissions exam is required. If it is, be sure to take the exam and arrange to have the scores sent to the college.
  • Take any other required exams, such as AP or IB.
  • Request recommendation letters and make sure you receive them in time for your application deadlines. (Be sure to also send “thank you” notes to those who wrote letters on your behalf.)
  • Draft your essay and proofread it for spelling and grammar. Then, ask two people to review it with fresh eyes and make all necessary revisions.
  • Request high school transcripts. (Note: A midyear grade report may also be sent.)
  • Complete the entire application.
  • Sign and send your application.
  • Make copies of each completed application for your college file.
  • Tour the campuses of as many colleges as possible.
  • Schedule campus interviews.
  • Talk to people who have attended (or currently attend) the schools you are interested in – hearing first-hand what a school is like is the absolute best way to learn and discover if it’s the right place for you.
  • Vaughn College also has a few admissions perks:
    • Vaughn is a college with rolling admissions, which means you can apply anytime throughout the year and be accepted for the upcoming semester, so you don’t ever need to worry about missing an admission deadline.
    • Vaughn participates in the Common Application (or Common App) which means you can fill out one application that can be sent to many schools on your list.

Apply for financial aid

Attending college can be the best years of your life, but they don’t come free! That’s why it’s important to apply for financial aid early and explore any scholarships, grants or government aid you may qualify for. Here are the steps to take to apply for financial aid:

  • Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (or FAFSA®). (Check out our blog for great information and helpful tips on completing the FAFSA.)
  • Confirm priority financial aid deadline.
  • Confirm regular financial aid deadline.
  • Submit a college aid form, if needed.
  • Submit a state aid form, if needed.

And, you’re not alone – 90 percent of Vaughn students are eligible for some type of financial assistance, so don’t miss out on an important opportunity to help fund your education.

Navigating the acceptance process

Waiting can be one of the hardest parts of the acceptance process. Here are some important things you can do to fill the time:

  • Follow up with your colleges to make sure they received your application materials.
  • Advise your guidance counselor that you applied – they can help you throughout the process.

Receiving notification of college acceptance

Receiving the news of your college acceptance is one of the most momentous days in a student’s life.

Here is what to expect:

  • A letter of acceptance from the office of admissions comes first.
  • A financial aid award letter comes after.

If accepted, here is what to do next:

  • Accept admission to the college of your choice by the deadline.
  • Send any required deposits.
  • Accept financial aid offer.

Why you should earn a college degree

Earning a college degree is not about just investing in your future—it’s about investing in yourself. The return on investment (ROI) is greater than you may have imagined. Here are just some of the reasons why earning a college degree is a pathway to a bright future:

  • Higher salary—College graduates can earn nearly $800,000 more in increased earnings over a lifetime compared to those who don’t have a degree.
  • Excellent job placement rate—Those with a college degree are less likely to be unemployed over time. Did you know that 92 percent of Vaughn graduates—76 percent in their chosen fields—are employed or continue their education within one year? Vaughn guarantees its students will graduate with a job.
  • In-demand, stable career fields—Vaughn graduates, for example, earn degrees in futureproof fields that are not only in-demand but have longevity in the industries they serve.

We hope that this checklist will shed new light on the college application process. Vaughn offers futureproof degree programs in some of today’s most in-demand fields such as engineering and technology, management and aviation. Our application process is simple and convenient. Apply today!

Wishing you all the best for a successful future!

Vaughn’s 2023 STEM summer camp programs are now open for registration. They focus on hands-on, experiential, project-based learning covering a range of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) topics including computer engineering, cybersecurity, artificial intelligence, engineering, drone development/operation and more. They are designed to pave the way to today’s in-demand and futureproof careers in engineering, technology, management and aviation. High school students can earn college credit, prepare for college life and get a jump-start on their future—all while having fun, making friends and building memories that will last a lifetime. Are you a high school student interested in these career fields? Find out how Vaughn can make your summer one of the best yet!

Air travel is rebounding

According to Forbes Advisor, air travel and tourism are rebounding as global air traffic climbed to about 70 percent of pre-pandemic levels in 2022. This post-pandemic travel surge has put the aviation industry in hiring mode. Since 2021, approximately 96,000 aviation-related jobs have been added, and this figure continues to climb.

Filling the need for cybersecurity in aviation and other areas

Heightened cyber threats have opened new doors of employment opportunities for cyber-ready individuals in helping combat this threat everywhere—including aviation. From ransomware attacks to systems outages—among other forms of cyber-attacks—the aviation industry has become the latest target for hackers to wreak havoc on.

The Computer Engineering Summer Academy Program at Vaughn gives students a head start in learning the basic and intermediate skills of computer engineering, which includes cybersecurity as it applies to aviation and many other industries. Pursuing a computer engineering degree at Vaughn will bring students one step closer to filling the need in this emerging field.

STEM is among most lucrative and fastest-growing career fields in the US

Jobs in the fields of (STEM) are not only the fastest-growing careers in the US, but they are the highest-paying ones as well. With growth expected to reach 15 percent between 2021 and 2034, STEM jobs are taking the top spot due to the growth of the digital economy—with information security jobs topping the list as among the fastest-growing in STEM-related fields.

Vaughn is offering two STEM-focused summer programs for high school students who wish to explore a career in engineering and technology.

The first is the TryEngineering Summer Institute is a hands-on camp sponsored by the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE), where students will gain real-life experience by working alongside industry professionals and engaging in hands-on projects within Vaughn’s engineering and technology labs.

The second is the Summer Engineering Experience Program which gives students the best of both worlds, as they learn how to prepare for college life both academically and socially. Students will not only explore what it’s like to major in engineering, but they will also have the opportunity to enroll in IBM courses which can then lead to earning artificial intelligence (AI) and cybersecurity certificates.

Turn your passion for drones into a high-flying career

Were you aware that some of today’s hottest industries are paying six-figure salaries for experienced drone pilots? The demand for commercial drone pilots is soaring, as industries rely on drones—or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs)—now more than ever before. In fact, according to Research and Markets, the demand for drone pilots is expected to grow by 51.1 percent over the next five years—with sales projected to reach over $16 billion by 2030. And that’s just from select markets!

The Propel Forward: UAS Certificate Program is a cutting-edge course of study which provides students the opportunity to earn 11 Vaughn College credits while still in high school. Students will receive the foundation—and hands-on experience—they need to earn their remote pilot certificates for operating an unmanned aircraft system (UAS).

What are your plans this summer? Enrolling in one of Vaughn’s Summer 2023 Programs can bring you one step closer to a futureproof career. Check them out and register today!


Attending a college open house is a great way to gauge whether a particular institution is the right fit for you and your future. After all, you’ll be spending a lot of time on campus while earning your degree. Read on to learn some helpful tips and information that will make your visit both enjoyable and productive.

How to prepare for a college visit 

The first thing you want to keep in mind is that every other attendee has similar goals. They’re searching for a college where they will thrive, feel comfortable and earn a degree that will lead them to a futureproof career. So, relax and be yourself. Here are some important tips to help you prepare:

  • Dress for success—Dressing for success builds confidence and puts your best foot forward.
  • Arrive early—Arriving early reduces stress and gives you an opportunity to mix, mingle and get a sense of the campus before the event begins.
  • Keep an open mind—Think of an open house as a clean slate where you may learn and gather all the information you need to build a bright future.
  • Don’t be shy—This is your time to shine. Remember, it’s a level playing field where everyone is there for the same reason.
  • Ask questions—Asking questions may just be the most important part of attending a college open house. You’re gathering information for your future, so don’t feel intimidated. Ask away. Not sure which questions to ask? No problem. We’ve put together an easy guide of the top 15 questions to ask at an open house. (We’ve even left space on each page for you to jot down some notes to review and compare when it’s decision time.)


Vaughn Open House

Vaughn College graduates leave with more than just diplomas. They leave with jobs in the exciting and in-demand career fields of today. Think of it as a passport to your future. Attending our open house on Saturday, March 18 at 10 a.m. is your first step toward achieving a futureproof career, which is something that Vaughn actually guarantees.

During Open House, you will learn about:


Why a degree from Vaughn is the ticket to your future

Our students go on to have exciting careers at some of the nation’s top companies in aerospace, engineering, aviation and transportation. Our graduates also find rewarding positions in industries one might ordinarily not expect, such as healthcare, utilities and sustainable energy.

Are you ready to meet the future you? Join us on March 18.

We hope to see you there!

Diversity has claimed the top spot of what matter most to students when searching for a college, according to the Class of 2023 Fall Senior Survey reported by Niche. Responses from more than 20,000 graduating seniors revealed that 42 percent felt a diverse student body was “appealing” to them, with an additional 37 percent saying it was a “must-have” in their college experience.

As an institution steeped in diversity, Vaughn College explores some of the key takeaways of the survey and how they relate to the many ways in which Vaughn meets the needs and concerns of its diverse campus community.

Addressing “unnecessary barriers”

One of the key takeaways from the survey is how students from all walks of life are looking for simplicity and relevance when applying to college. Among the more than 20,000 responses, the overall theme was “meeting students where they are” by addressing the “unnecessary barriers” in the college application and admissions process.

Here are some of the areas students are struggling with:
  • Completing college applications
  • Navigating the college admissions process
  • Navigating college websites
How Vaughn overcomes these barriers:

At Vaughn, we cultivate a sense of belonging and have a genuine interest in the success of our students—without any barriers. If you have been considering applying to Vaughn, here are some of the ways we would help you to become a part of the Vaughn community:

  • Admissions counselors are available to help you with your application and answer any questions you may have about the admissions process. Schedule an appointment—via Zoom—with an admissions adviser.
  • Our state-of-the-art website is exciting and easy to navigate—with straightforward information on everything you need to know about our outstanding degree programs and how to become a Vaughn student.
  • Vaughn holds financial aid information sessions during key application periods to help students fill out the FAFSA®, apply for scholarships and navigate the financial aid universe.

College search

Campus visits:

Although most students begin their initial search for colleges online, the trend of attending campus tours is returning. According to the survey, 49 percent of students reported visiting a college and meeting with admissions. For under-resourced and first-generation students, this figure is lower—at below 40 percent.

How Vaughn focuses on the future:
  • Open House: Attending an open house is a great way to learn everything you need to know about us and our degree programs—all under one roof. From the admissions process and financial aid to our futureproof degree programs and student life, you’ll leave with all your questions answered—and then some. Check out our blog, “Top Questions to Ask During a College Open House.” There’s even a handy list of questions you can bring on your visits.
  • Student Voices Videos: Students want to hear from other students about why they love their college. We do just that through our Student Voices videos. Hear and see for yourself the reasons why Vaughn students are living their dreams in today’s futureproof fields.
  • Podcast: Tune into our podcast, FutureProof Focus, to hear from Vaughn alumni, among others, about how they landed successful careers and where they are now.
What students want to know about most:

As part of the survey, students ranked their top picks of what they want to learn most about when searching for colleges. Here are their top three choices—out of eight given topics:

  • Financial aid (56 percent)
  • Academics (55 percent)
  • Careers related to their major (53 percent)
How Vaughn meets your needs:
Underrepresented communities:

The survey revealed how under-resourced, first-generation and traditionally underrepresented students continue to fall behind in the college search process when compared to respondents in other categories where search is slightly ahead of last year. With 38 percent of students reporting that they have started the application process, the study revealed that these underrepresented groups were more likely to report feeling negative emotions about starting college. In fact, 97 percent reported they had fears about the college search process, with affordability being one of the top concerns. These findings confirm the need for more support in the college search process, with a focus on alleviating concerns of affordability.

Vaughn fast facts:
  • Ranked number one in upward mobility, nationwide***
  • Ranked as a top college for social mobility by U.S. News & World Report
  • Ranked in the top four percent of colleges with the highest return on investment (ROI) for students from under-resourced communities.†
Other important factors:
  • Availability of scholarships (98 percent)
  • Safe campus (96 percent)
  • Quality and variety of food options (93 percent)
How Vaughn addresses these factors:
  • Scholarships: Vaughn recognizes academic excellence by awarding scholarships to high-achieving students who are pursuing bachelor’s degrees. We offer several scholarship opportunities for those students meeting certain criteria.
  • Campus safety: Vaughn has long had a policy of making safety information and protocols readily available. Here is the latest information to date.
  • Kate’s Corner Café: Our new café boasts healthy and delicious menu options conveniently located on campus, with vegetarian, kosher and halal options available.
  • Financial Well-Being: We offer support, tips and resources for students about how to stay financially healthy during college.

How Vaughn meets you where you are

At Vaughn, we recognize, respect and celebrate all facets of diversity. We are committed to welcoming and embracing our diverse Vaughn College community with respect and dignity. That’s why—by respecting diversity in all its dimensions—we foster a community that invites and is inclusive of everyone.

Are you looking for a college that meets you where you are with degree programs that are career focused and futureproof? Contact us to schedule a visit or take a virtual tour today or register for Open House on March 18 at 10 a.m.


*Results of the survey were analyzed and compiled as a joint project between Niche and Tudor Collegiate Strategies.

**Outcomes include data within one year of graduation for graduates who reported via survey. There was a total of 314 graduates in 2021. 154 reported an outcome for an 49% response rate. The 2021 graduate class includes September 2020, December 2020 and May 2021.

***The Upshot, January 18, 2017, “Some Colleges Have More Students From the Top 1 Percent Than the Bottom 60.”

†Data from a study completed by Georgetown University’s Center on Education and the Workforce, “The Colleges Where Low-Income Students Get the Highest ROI”

Looking for the perfect holiday gift ideas for the engineers and tech lovers in your life? We’ve done the shopping for you. Vaughn College is excited to share its 2022 Holiday Gift Guide. Get ready to “sleigh” the holidays with these awesome gift ideas!

Flashlight gloves

Anyone who works with their hands will love having light at their fingertips—when and where they need it. These cleverly engineered flashlight gloves have LED lights on the index finger and thumb, which makes working in dark spaces an illuminating experience. Plus, they’re made to be ambidextrous, so there’s no fumbling when time is of the essence. Talk about shedding light on the subject!

Robotic arm

You don’t have to be an mechanical engineer to love this gift. In fact, any robotics or tech enthusiast will be thrilled to build this cool robotic arm. The kit includes everything needed to get started. Check it out:

robotic armThe control system of the mechanical arm shown here is equipped with:

  • Bluetooth
  • 16M memory
  • Operates via a DC port

Once built, here’s what it can do:

  • Grab and hold up to 55 pounds
  • Save 1,020 different actions
  • Can be programmed using PC software, mobile applications and offline

Smart weather station

smart weather stationBe a meteorologist in your own backyard! This innovative smart weather station allows you to monitor the weather conditions at your home and backyard at a glance using a bright, LCD color display. You can keep up with the current temperature, humidity, rainfall, wind speeds and so much more via the wireless all-in-one integrated sensor. This makes a great gift for anyone who loves meteorology—or just likes talking about the weather.

Magnetic levitating globe

magnetic globeHow does it do that? This magnetic levitating globe is one of the coolest gifts to give this holiday season. Powered by electricity, the globe levitates by use of powerful magnets on the top and bottom of the unit. It’s the perfect gift for the students, engineers, scientists and curiosity-seekers in your life.

Aviator smartwatch

aviator smartwatchThe latest aviator smartwatches have amazing features that the pilot in your life will be sure to appreciate. These watches have touchscreen displays with GPS/moving map, weather/radar reports, call/text and animated workouts. It also can be paired to an app to transfer flight plans. With so many different variations of this type of watch, there’s definitely one for your pilot!


From all of us at Vaughn College, we wish you a safe and happy holiday season!

A college education may be more affordable than you think. The Federal Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is open for the 2023-2024 school year—but the time to act is now to ensure you get the most aid.

Why should you complete the FAFSA?

The FAFSA is your gateway to applying for federal aid which opens up opportunities for institutional financial aid and can open the doors to consideration for scholarships and other aid. Here are the top reasons why you should complete the FAFSA today:

  • Filing your FAFSA sooner can mean more money for college, including access to state grant programs awarded on a first come, first served basis.
  • The federal government provides students with more than $120 billion each year in grants, loans and work-study to assist them in paying for college or a career institution. This provides the opportunity to afford the college education and career you’ve been dreaming about.
  • Applying is required for scholarship consideration, even if you believe you won’t qualify for federal aid.
  • The application is simple to fill out and gives you tips along the way to understand the questions. Plus, it’s free!

Important deadlines for completing the FAFSA application

Enrollment for the 2023-2024 school year began on October 1, 2022. Students who plan on attending a four-year college, university, community college or career school are encouraged to complete the FAFSA as soon as possible in order to improve their chances of qualifying for the most aid.

Students seeking financial aid who are currently enrolled in the 2022-2023 school year have until June 30, 2023, to complete their FAFSA applications.

Learn about all-important FAFSA deadlines.

What you will need to start the application process

Preparation is key before you begin the application process. For purposes of applying for federal student aid, the FAFSA lists questions about you and your finances to determine whether you are a dependent or independent student. If you are applying as a dependent, your parents’ information as well as yours will be required. If you are an independent, only your information is required. You can learn more about how to determine your dependency status here.

Here is a list of necessary items you will need to collect before you begin the application:

  • Your social security number (or alien registration number if you are not a US citizen)
  • Your parents’ social security numbers if you are filing as a dependent student
  • Your driver’s license number if you have one
  • All 2021 federal tax information, tax documents or tax returns, including IRS W-2 information for you (and your spouse, if you are married) and for your parents if you are a dependent student:
  • IRS Form 1040
  • Foreign tax return or IRS Form 1040-NR
  • Tax return for Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa, the U.S. Virgin Islands, the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia or Palau
  • Records of untaxed income (such as child support, interest income and veterans noneducation benefits for you and for your parents if you are a dependent student)
  • Cash, savings, checking account balances
  • Investments other than the home in which you live
Helpful tip:

It’s alright if you don’t have all the information at hand. The FAFSA application allows you to save your information along the way. Missing information may be entered once you have it. Just don’t wait too long. Some states and institutions have limited funds and set their own priority deadlines. The sooner you submit your application, the sooner you’ll know if you qualify for aid.

Important information:

You or your parents are strongly encouraged to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool (DRT) which automatically—and accurately—transfers tax information into the FAFSA form. Just be sure you enter the requested information exactly as it appears on your tax return.

Creating your FAFSA ID account

It is highly recommended that you create an account prior to filling out the application. You will be asked to create an FSA ID—which is comprised of a username and password combination that will give you access to important online information and allow you to electronically sign your FAFSA and any promissory notes. Here’s more information on how to create an FSA ID (or if you forgot your username).

Helpful tip:

The system is sensitive to the way you enter your name and social security information. To avoid running into issues during the verification process, be sure to enter your information exactly as it appears on your social security card.

Important information:

Parents of dependent students are required to create their own FSA ID so that they can electronically sign the application. For parents who do not have a social security number (SSN)—which is required to create an FSA ID—the student will select the option to print the signature page when he or she reaches the end of the application.

Now that you—and if necessary, your parents—have created your FSA ID, you can start filling out your FAFSA application here.

If you don’t have access to a computer, here are other submission options:

  • Mail-in application: Request a printed PDF by calling 1-800-433-3243.
  • Electronic submission by your college or career school: Request if the FAFSA can be submitted for you.

Interested in attending Vaughn College? We can help you complete your FAFSA application

Contact a Vaughn representative to help you with your application:

  • Email  and one of our financial aid representatives will set up a time to contact you.
  • Phone: 718.429.6600, Ext. 100; someone will get back to you within 24 hours.
  • In-person office hours: Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • The Financial Aid Zoom Room (Meeting ID: 678 686 441)
    • Hours: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Tuesdays, from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.

How Vaughn helps students graduate with careers

Vaughn offers federal, state and institutional funds to help students pay for their education. In fact, 90 percent of our students are eligible for some type of financial aid, with the average package totaling more than $15,000 per year. We are dedicated to working with all qualifying students to help them get the assistance they need to not only pursue their education, but graduate with their desired career.

Here are other ways to get help with your FAFSA application

  • Contact the guidance department at your high school – their job is to help you complete your college applications.
  • Many communities offer free services and resources to assist you with completing your FAFSA – contact your local chamber of commerce or governing body for details.
  • Contact the financial aid office of the college you plan on attending.
  • Check out this FAFSA process graphic.
  • Use the “tool tip” on the online FAFSA application, which will give you information on how to answer any questions. Simply select the white question mark next to each question you’re unsure of.
  • Visit the FAFSA Help page on the online application.

Don’t let the cost of a college education get in the way of pursuing your dream career. Vaughn offers degree programs in engineering, technologymanagement and aviation. Discover the possibilities of where a futureproof degree from Vaughn can take you.

For more than 70 years, Mental Health Awareness Month has been recognized during the month of May. The purpose is to raise awareness for how mental health is essential to overall health. With nearly one-in-five Americans living with a mental health condition according to the National Institute of Mental Health, the reality is that someone you know—or even yourself—could be struggling. The good news is one of the best ways to celebrate Mental Health Awareness Month is to talk about it.

Vaughn College is starting the conversation by exploring some of the mental health conditions students are facing today, as well as the ways to overcome them. But first, let’s start with the basics.

What is mental health?

It’s not always about what you can see, but what you can’t see. Unlike physical health—which is mostly visible on the outside—mental health is an inner process that involves how we think, feel and process situations. How you handle a stressful situation or relate to others, for example, can determine the state of your mental health. If you’ve been struggling but are hesitating about getting help for fear of being judged, now is the time to release that fear and seek counseling. Not sure if what you’re feeling is part of mental health? Let’s discuss.

Mental health conditions

Most of us have experienced one or more challenging times in our lives and those times can be overwhelming, leaving our mental health to suffer. Millions of Americans experience mental health conditions. Some conditions are more prevalent among college students due to the stress of studying, juggling work and extracurriculars, maintaining relationships, etc. Some of these conditions may include:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Eating disorders
  • Substance abuse
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Sleeping issues and disorders
  • Self-injury

If you’ve been experiencing any of these conditions, it’s important to realize that you’re not alone. Internalizing and ignoring any of these conditions can lead you to feeling isolated, alone and with nowhere to turn. It is important to achieve mental wellness by finding a healthy balance between your studies, job, family and extracurriculars, while seeking the appropriate support. To learn about the wellness programs and activities offered at Vaughn, read our blog: “Stress Awareness Month: How Vaughn Helps You Find Your Balance.”

Some facts about anxiety disorder

  • Anxiety is the most common form of mental illness in the United States, affecting 40 million adults in the United States age 18 and older, or 18.1% of the population every year according to the Anxiety & Depression Association of America
  • In many cases, anxiety disorders are treatable
  • Only about 36 percent of affected people choose to get help
  • Exercise is a proven way to help lessen the effects of anxiety disorders

The impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on mental health

There’s no denying the pandemic has impacted our mental well-being. And for college students, this impact has complicated life even further. Remote learning has caused students to be much less social, more sedentary and more complacent. Even with the latest easing of COVID-19 restrictions, students are still feeling the emotional impacts of the pandemic. Some of these include:

  • Relationships—Social distancing may have put a strain on relationships with friends and partners.
  • Remote learning—Learning via Zoom can cause students to feel isolated, alone, and complacent.
  • Loss of loved ones—Complications from COVID-19 may have taken the lives of loved ones which takes a long-term toll on mental health.

Healthy ways to improve your mental health

First, let’s start by saying that self-care isn’t selfish. Good mental health begins with being honest with yourself, your feelings and emotions. Here are some healthy ways to improve or maintain good mental health:

  • Self-check-ins—Regular self-check-ins are important steps for reflecting on how you’re feeling and addressing anything that might be upsetting you. The goal here is to not ignore any issues but to work through them or seek help if needed.
  • Schedule some “me” time—Life can get busy and overwhelming with studying, work and other responsibilities. Make time to do things that bring you peace and joy, even if it means setting boundaries with others. Remember it’s ok to say “no” sometimes. Whether it’s meeting up with friends, going on a nature walk or even packing a picnic lunch in the park, taking a break from the books is a great way to nurture your mental health.
  • Check-in on loved ones—Friends and family may be struggling with their own mental health. A simple phone call or visit can make all the difference to helping them feel loved and encouraged. (And it may help you, too!)
  • Form a study group or get a study buddy—Studying with friends is always better than studying alone. Even if you prefer to study alone, checking your knowledge with your peers can never hurt.
  • Participate in on-campus happenings, events and clubs—Doing things outside of your normal comfort zone and meeting other students or alumni with similar interests will invigorate your soul and help you to feel a part of something larger. Check out Vaughn’s events calendar for students – there’s always something fun going on!

If you need someone to talk to or want more information on staying mentally healthy, we encourage you to make an appointment at Vaughn’s office of counseling and wellness. Vaughn is committed to helping you overcome any challenges and guide you towards graduating and obtaining your dream career.  Need help academically? Stop by Vaughn’s Academic Success Center – it’s always open to provide you with the one-on-one support you need to succeed in your classes.

Other helpful mental health resources:

National Alliance on Mental Illness

National Institute of Mental Health

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

Anxiety & Depression Association of America

National Suicide Prevention Hotline—(800-273-TALK) or dial 988 (available in all states on July 16, 2022)

April is “Stress Awareness Month.” This is a time when we are reminded to pay closer attention to both our mental and physical health. Everyone will experience some level of stress at one time or another. It’s part of life. So, what then are the best ways to manage the challenges related to stress?

We had the opportunity to chat with the Director of Counseling and Wellness Dr. Stacey Dutil to learn about the stressors that students are facing today and the support programs Vaughn offers to help them find comfort and a happy balance between college, work and family obligations.

Finding your balance at Vaughn

From your first day of class right up until graduation day, Vaughn is there every step of the way to ensure you have the emotional support you need—when you need it. “Vaughn offers a robust offering of programs and activities for students looking for a solid support system in a healthy social environment,” explained Dutil.

Here are some of the programs and activities that aim to help Vaughn students maintain a healthy college-life balance:

  • First-year initiative class—The “First Year Initiative Class” is part of Vaughn’s curriculum and a requirement for all incoming freshmen. The course is designed to educate students on ways in which they may take a proactive approach to wellness while pursuing their degrees. Some topics include maintaining positive mental and physical health and healthy eating and sleeping and study habits.
  • Higher Education Opportunity Program (HEOP)—This academic and financial support program helps students enroll in—and succeed—through graduation. Support services include—but are not limited to—workshops, supplemental financial assistance, counseling and tutoring in certain areas. Learn more about HEOP here.
  • College Possible Mentorship Program (Catalyze)—College mentoring and opportunity programs, such as College Possible® Catalyze, help underserved, low-income and first-generation college students prepare for success. For the past two years, Catalyze coaches have been instrumental in guiding eligible Vaughn students to graduation by empowering them with tools and resources to achieve their goals. Learn more about the College Possible Mentorship Program here.
  • Residence assistants (RAs)—Students living on-campus can gain a sense of community and build a strong support system with help from their residence assistants (or RAs). In addition to their other residence duties, RAs organize a calendar of activities to keep students engaged.
  • Athletics and wellness—The athletics and wellness department offer mood-boosting classes and activities to promote positive mental and physical health. Some of these activities include yoga, Zumba and a variety of sports programs.
  • Speaker series—Vaughn invites industry leaders to speak on subjects that are most important to the mental and physical health of today’s college students. You can check out our calendar of upcoming events to see what’s coming up.

Here are some other helpful ways that you can nurture self-care:

  • Meditate
  • Exercise
  • Eat a healthy diet
  • Get enough sleep
  • Keep a journal

Read our blog, “Activities, Programs and Tips to Stay Mentally Fit in College,” to learn more great ways Vaughn helps support its students.

A message from Dr. Dutil

“We all—not just students—need to keep in mind that it’s important to take time for ourselves. Self-care is the first step toward recharging your body and mind for success and avoiding burn out. The office of counseling and wellness provides something for everyone. Self-care and wellness are not a ‘one size fits all.’ We are all unique. And at Vaughn, our diverse community is testament to proving that no matter what we are up against, we are all working toward a common goal—to live a healthy, balanced life.”

Are you feeling stressed or burned out? If you need someone to talk to or want more information on staying mentally healthy, we encourage you to make an appointment at the office of counseling and wellness.