The Maine Department of Education’s Office of Adult Education launched a campaign today to encourage adult learners to complete the HiSET, Maine’s high school equivalency test. Those who complete the HiSET are eligible for two years of free community college in Maine. As part of the campaign, ‘It’s time for HiSET’ yard signs will be displayed throughout Maine and local programs will use social media with hashtag #HiSET4ME, mail postcards, and sponsor community events to promote HiSET completion.
Students who live in Maine, graduate high school or receive a HiSET between 2020 and 2023, and enroll in a Maine community college full time are eligible for two years of free community college.
The HiSET has been Maine’s high school equivalency test since 2014, when it took the place of the GED. Adult learners without a high school credential can receive a Maine High School Equivalency Diploma by successfully completing HiSET’s five subject tests in Language Arts Reading, Language Arts Writing, Mathematics, Science, and Social Studies. There is no cost to Maine residents for HiSET testing or HiSET prep classes. In addition, past HiSET subject tests are still valid, and learners who have taken some of the HiSET subject tests in the past are encouraged to return to their local adult education program to complete their HiSET testing.
“We want adult learners to know that HiSET is a free, easily accessible pathway to get your high school credential, and that by completing your HiSET you can unlock the opportunity to attend two years of community college at no cost,” said Education Commissioner Pender Makin. “If you’ve taken one or more of the HiSET subject tests, but then life got in the way, now is the time to come back and complete your HiSET. If you’ve been thinking about HiSET, but just haven’t gotten around to making that appointment, now is the time to call your local adult education program. It’s time for HiSET!”
More than 60 adult education programs throughout Maine provide a range of instructional services to help adults develop the skills for further educational opportunities, job training, and better employment.
Brandon Codrey started his HiSET process in 2017, but work became a priority and he had to stop attending the program. After several years, he returned to his local adult education program and completed his HiSET in April. Brandon is now enrolled in an applied math class for the summer through On Course for College and looks to enroll in his local community college’s plumbing certification program in the fall. Blythe Gowen, a single mother, completed her HiSET in January and is now looking to enroll in college in the fall to study pharmacology. And Michael Sowards restarted his HiSET process after a several year pause and graduated last September. His local adult education program worked with him to enroll in a free computer applications college course, and this fall he will enter into an accounting program. They are just a handful of the 1,700 adult learners who have received their high school diploma through Maine adult education since 2020.