During her first few weeks of college, Natalie Clifford heard stories about College Possible and the AmeriCorps program, but could never have known that 5 years later she would be working with her own group of 40 students, guiding them on a path to college success.
“I remember continuing to hear about College Possible as I made more friends who were first-generation college students at the University of Minnesota,” Clifford says. “As I neared college graduation, I found out I could have the opportunity to get to know and support fantastic people like these friends.”
Natalie was motivated through seeing friends experience the effects of budget cut patterns across higher education. Now, she is a College Possible coach at Roosevelt High School in the Twin Cities. College Possible coaches work closely with students, providing academic support through ACT test preparation, college application assistance, financial aid consulting and guidance in the college transition towards degree completion.
“It seemed to be an energizing way for me to enter similar work through a focus on personal relationships. I remember being excited by the idea of working at a high school, with the chance to spend so much time with many wonderful, young and energetic people.”
College Possible is now recruiting recent college graduates like Natalie to fill over 130 AmeriCorps and VISTA full-time positions starting this summer. Ideal candidates will have demonstrated leadership, a high level of achievement in academics or employment and a commitment to making college admission and success possible for low-income students.
“It has been truly humbling to witness the incredible collaboration of my students. I’m not just looking out for them, but they have my back too. We’re a fierce family—we support each other and care a lot, and we’re so lucky to have each other. They are simply phenomenal.”
College Possible currently operates in Minnesota’s Twin Cities; Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Omaha, Nebraska; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; and Portland, Oregon and attracts candidates from across the country. The application for AmeriCorps positions is now available at CollegePossible.org/Serve. The final deadline is March 3. Positions include direct service opportunities coaching high school and college students as well as capacity building roles such as communications, fundraising, human resources, event planning and program research.