September 15, 2017

For over a decade at STRIVE Prep, we’ve been asking our scholars “STRIVE Prep, why are we here?” to which they respond “to STRIVE for college!”

Now, in our 12th year, we are working harder than ever to improve not just college readiness for our scholars, but to increase their access by helping them become aware of all of the tools and resources that are available to help ease their journey to college and beyond.

This is where our network Director of College Access, Shaleena Gaskin, comes in – she joined STRIVE Prep this year with over 10 years of higher education experience in Colorado. Her job is easily summed up in one sentence – to identify and create partnerships that will help improve college access for STRIVE Prep students, however, this job is anything but simple.

“I came to STRIVE Prep because working in colleges I found a disconnect between them and high schools,” she said. “I wanted to take my background and expertise in higher education to help high school students get access to all the tools they need to be successful within their post-secondary education.”

With two high schools graduating seniors in 2018 and 2019, and three graduating classes in 2020, we hope to have more and more STRIVE Prep scholars being accepted to college and bridging that acceptance with attendance and on-time graduation, which is why Shaleena’s work, making sure students don’t only have the education but also the resources they need to make their dreams of college a reality is so important.

A first big step will come next week, when STRIVE Prep – Excel and STRIVE Prep – SMART host their Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) nights.

“Understanding FAFSA is an important first step because figuring out how to pay for college is a huge weight off our scholars, once they figure that out, they can focus on finding the right college fit,” she explained.

All senior families are welcome to attend the nights and should bring their 2016 tax return information, as well as recent pay stubs and any other financial information relating to their net worth.

STRIVE Prep – Excel
October 5, 2017
5 p.m. – 7 p.m.

STRIVE Prep – SMART
October 5, 2017
4:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

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