Engaging families and trusted adults in a student’s college decision making is a key element to the $1 million AT&T Aspire grant to College Possible. The grant will help programs in Minnesota and Pennsylvania, including Penn Wood, Upper Darby and George Washington High Schools.
In an effort to connect with students and their families, College Possible Philadelphia hosted an AT&T Aspire College Readiness Night on December 18 at Upper Darby High School. Families from Penn Wood and Upper Darby High Schools joined College Possible staff and AmeriCorps coaches to learn how they can support their children or siblings on their journeys to and through college. From learning about the college application process to how to pay for college, students and their families learned what to consider when choosing a college.
“At College Possible, we recognize that families play a critical role in student success since they are our students’ biggest advocates and supporters,” said Program Manager Bryan DeFoney. “Thanks to the generous contribution from AT&T Aspire, we have an opportunity to identify effective program strategies through family engagement events, group discussions and a new innovative college ‘right fit’ tool.”
Support from AT&T Aspire is helping College Possible improve the quality of information available for students as they decide where to apply and enroll in college. Research has shown that families and trusted adults who are more engaged in the college process increases the odds of post-secondary enrollment and completion.
“College Possible fits the aspiration of AT&T Aspire through its proven model of intensive support, near-peer mentoring and vigorous programming. That is, to enable students to succeed in high school, college and beyond,” says Joseph Divis, Assistant Vice President of External Affairs for AT&T and the board chair for College Possible Philadelphia. “The region’s workforce of the future needs employees who are not just capable and think critically, but who will persist and grow to meet new challenges. With the support of AT&T Aspire, College Possible Philadelphia is doing just that.”
By Ian Reitz