This article has been reposted with permission from whole child partner America's Promise Alliance. The alliance raises awareness, encourages action, and engages in advocacy to provide children the key supports called the Five Promises: caring adults, safe places, a healthy start, an effective education, and opportunities to help others. Follow America's Promise Alliance on Twitter @fivepromises.
Twenty students who beat the odds to become first in their family to attend college have teamed up with nonprofit Center for Student Opportunity (CSO) to launch the new Opportunity Scholars blog. Their mission is to share their remarkable college journeys and offer advice to other underserved students like them on how to make it to college.
"Follow these students closely because they are shining examples of how to turn college dreams into reality," said Matt Rubinoff, CSO's executive director. "We hope that this blog helps the hundreds of thousands of underserved, low-income students understand that the opportunity for college is within reach."
The 20 student bloggers all receive CSO's Opportunity Scholarship. Through the generosity of a foundation grant, the scholarship will double this year to become a $2,000 four-year renewable scholarship. Some of the student bloggers include the following:
- Khadijah Williams (Los Angeles, Calif./Harvard University '13) who made education her anchor while growing up homeless on Skid Row and persevered to make it to the nation's top university;
- Abigail Macias (Sparks, Nev./Dartmouth '14) the daughter of Mexican immigrants who rose above negative stereotypes to attend Dartmouth;
- Darius Journigan (Detroit, Mich./Marymount Manhattan College '14) who after being evicted from almost every home he lived in through his youth can now call Marymount Manhattan College in New York City his home; and
- Native American Sophia Horn (Whittier, Calif./California State University, Chico '14) who worked 45 hours a week while juggling her school work to achieve her dream of going to college and majoring in sports journalism.
High school students can follow the blog and use the accompanying CSO College Center website (www.csocollegecenter.org) to research and connect with colleges active in the recruitment of first-generation, low-income, and minority students. Students who use the website will have a chance to apply for the Opportunity Scholarship and become future bloggers when they begin college.
To check out the Opportunity Scholars blog, please visit: http://csocollegecenter.org/blog/.