Looking back at College Possible Philadelphia Launch! 2016

On Saturday, June 25th, at Cabrini College, College Possible Philadelphia gathered for one of the biggest days of the year: Launch! 2016. Students, families, members of the community, and everyone at College Possible Philadelphia came together to celebrate all that we’ve accomplished this year.

College Possible Philadelphia’s first class of high school seniors just graduated, and 97 percent of them earned admission to college. The 132 members of the Class of 2016 earned over 550 acceptance letters in all! Our 176 juniors, through their year of work with their coaches in session and early morning practice exams, raised their SAT scores by an average of 15.75 percent!

We had many achievements to recognize. But more than anything, Launch! was about having a great time. There was music, laughs, prizes—and a few happy tears. It was great way to end our second year serving students in greater Philadelphia.

Our MC Precious Mines, Program Manager, kicked off the event and kept the energy going throughout the ceremony. The room was decked out in balloons and decoration, and a DJ filled the space with music.

junior coach group
Our students heard from their coaches, who put together presentations—including a parody of The Office—highlighting their year together.

Coaches shared words of appreciation for their students “To say this year has been a blessing would be an understatement,” said Coach Courtney, who coaches juniors at Upper Darby. “A world in your hands is one I cannot wait to see,” said Coach Mela, who coaches seniors at Upper Darby.

Many coaches also left their students with a few last words of advice. “There’s so much out there to see, do don’t let it pass you by,” said Coach Luke, who coaches seniors at George Washington. “Be your own advocate, stand up for justice, and stand up for equality in education,” said Coach Tika, who coaches juniors at Murrell Dobbins.

Attendees also heard from a keynote speaker, State Representative Jordan Harris of Philadelphia. He shared his own story of overcoming many obstacles in pursuit of his education, and urged students to do the same. “I implore you to take your personal story, don’t be ashamed of it,” Harris said, “and use the negative to harness your determination.”

Harris closed by emphasizing how important it is to close the degree gap, and how important low-income students are to the future of their communities and the country. “This is not just about you anymore,” he said. “This is about us as a community. We need you to be successful.”

The College Possible team handed out prizes throughout the day. Everyone had a chance to get some college merchandise and apparel, and some students were recognized for their exceptional work. Kheyana, a student at Parkway Center City, won a dorm fridge for applying to the most college scholarships—a whopping 25 applications in all!

After the ceremonies ended, students moved on to breakout sessions—juniors toured Cabrini’s campus, and seniors held discussion groups about what to expect in college next year.

dobbins group snapchat filter
We were thrilled to celebrate our students one last time this school year at Launch! 2016!

  • Meet Destiny

    “My College Possible coaches haven’t just helped me increase my ACT score and apply to colleges; they’ve made me feel confident in myself.”

    Read their story
  • Meet Jessica

    “Making it through college, a step that people think is impossible for students with backgrounds like mine, is the most amazing thing.”

    Read their story
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