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Breaking the Cycle: Counseling First-Generation College

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Breaking the Cycle: Counseling First-Generation College Bound Students Mount Ida Success Academy Mandy Savitz-Romer November 7, 2008 Harvard Grad School of Education – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Breaking the Cycle: Counseling First-Generation College


1
Breaking the Cycle Counseling First-Generation
College Bound Students
  • Mount Ida Success Academy
  • Mandy Savitz-Romer
  • November 7, 2008
  • Harvard Grad School of Education

2
Introduction
  • Aims for Presentation
  • Agenda
  • Present the rationale for this topic
  • Provide broad overview of research
  • Describe how counselors can use this information

3
Guiding Principles
  • College For All
  • Access to a College Degree
  • Opportunities for Change

4
  • Im not even sure what the steps are, they just
    told me to try to get applications in by the
    beginning of the year and they have to fill them
    up and then after that, after Christmas break you
    have to turn in your financial aid sheet . . . I
    still dont have any applications . . . Im
    still kind of like confused about it, because Im
    not really sure what to do.
  • CCRC

5
Starting Points
  • Having a parent who earned a BA makes a child 5
    times more likely to attend college and earn a BA
    herself.

6
Gaps In Enrollment
  • Immediately after High School 89 of those with
    parents possessing a BA or higher vs 62 of those
    whose parents held a high school diploma
  • NCES, 2006

7
General Agreement.
  • Gaps in enrollment and completion
  • By Race, Class, Gender, and First-Gen status
  • Root causes of problem
  • Higher Education vs. K-12 Schools/Systems
  • Academic Preparation
  • College counseling and planning
  • School counselors

8
What information/frameworks do you use to promote
college access and success for your students?
Where did you learn this framework and how?
9
What do we know about FGC - ACCESS
  • Less academically prepared
  • Lower educational aspirations
  • May be straddling two cultures
  • Lack college knowledge
  • Limited access to knowledge to information about
    college experience

10
What do we know - ACCESS
  • Cite the following when choosing an institution
  • Cost
  • Short time to completion
  • Location (ability to live at home)
  • Ability to work/study
  • Ability to get a job on campus

11
What do we know - SUCCESS
  • More at risk for not completing degree
  • Experience difficulty in acclimating to PSE
  • More likely to
  • delay enrollment
  • enroll part-time
  • work full time while enrolled
  • live off campus or with family

12
Transmission of Educational Advantage
  • College-educated parents differ from other
    parents in how they
  • Engage in parenting
  • Provide material resources
  • Think about the importance of college
  • Know how to navigate college
  • Support their kids during college

13
Important indicators of access success
  • Academic Preparation
  • High Educational Aspirations
  • High Quality College Counseling
  • College Knowledge
  • Support from Family, Peers, Mentors
  • Transition to PSE

14
1. ACADEMIC PREP
  • Strongest predictor of college enrollment
  • College preparatory coursework
  • Enrollment in gatekeeper courses
  • Access to AP courses
  • Support for academics
  • Cognitive Skills and Abilities

15
2. ASPIRATIONS
  • Aspirations may be low or not well developed
  • Aspirations diminish through the academic
    pipeline
  • Few have taken steps (coursework, academic
    behavior)
  • Hope vs. plan? plans for the future
  • Competing influences (peers, family demands,
    perceptions of likelihood of enrollment.

16
3. COLLEGE COUNSELING
  • Especially important for FBCB students
  • Lack college knowledge
  • Plan late
  • Must begin early to shape behavior
  • Active participation in planning
  • Make PSE decisions haphazardly
  • Intensive/comprehensive support

17
Need Comprehensive Approach
  • Students need include both academic and social
    support
  • Dichotomize these areas
  • Often ignore the social needs
  • Focus on building resilience and competencies to
    manage stress and transitions
  • Attention to socio-cultural relevance and
    multiple world experiences of students

18
4. COLLEGE KNOWLEDGE
  • Lack information about college admissions process
  • May possesses misperceptions
  • Need to information rich networks

19
5. SUPPORT MATTERS- FAMILY/PEERS MENTORS
  • Relationships with others matter
  • Developing Aspirations Making Decisions
    Instrumental/Procedural Help
  • Perceptions of support equally important

20
FAMILY MATTERS
  • Foundations for PSE in place long before
    programs, school counselors and HS
  • Support supporting college preparatory
    activities, assisting children with homework,
    participating in academics, saving for college
    and talking with children about college and its
    benefits

21
Why Families
  • Affirms students culture and nuances associated
    being first in their family
  • Planning pervades students life beyond your
    office
  • Decrease likelihood of perceptions of breaking
    away
  • Can have larger ripple effect throughout wider
    community

22
The Influence of Peers
  • Peers influence students aspirations and
    academic decisions habits
  • Shape their Identity
  • Importance of academically-minded peer
    culture/Friends who support college plans
  • OR decisions may be in competition with peer
    expectations

23
6. TRANSITION TO PSE
  • Quality of PS planning and information
  • Better fit between student/institution
  • How students make this cultural and social
    transition determines their success
  • Social Integration into community
  • Working and/ or living off campus
  • Academic Integration

24
WHERE ONE ATTENDS
  • Elite institutions have higher retention rates
  • Four year public institutions
  • Community College Transfer rates - Approx. 20
  • Private, liberal arts institutions have among the
    highest retention rates for first-generation
    college students

25
Using Research to Guide our Interventions/Counseli
ng
  • Ensuring Academic Opportunity and Engagement
  • Raising Expectations
  • Increasing College Knowledge
  • Comprehensive Counseling
  • Building Peer Support
  • Empowering Families

26
ENSURING ACADEMIC OPPORTUNITY ENGAGEMENT
  • Promote course offerings for ALL students
  • Coordinate tutoring and mentoring programs
  • Examine AP opportunities and support
  • Establish dual enrollment programs
  • Advocate for PS entrance exams to be used early -
    other appraisal systems
  • Promote college readiness in curriculum

27
RAISING EXPECTATIONS
  • Raise em up EARLY!
  • Identify whether aspirations/expectations
  • Identify perceived barriers/obstacles
  • Target initiatives to engage participation of
    whole school
  • Make steps concrete, continuous and clear

28
Increase College Knowledge
  • Identify practices to reach ALL students
  • Use classroom and group curriculum
  • Leverage community partners
  • Distributive counseling/advising
  • Promote college-going culture
  • Create developmental plans for younger students

29
Sharing Responsibility
  • College Culture
  • Educating Teachers (Advisories, PD, Distributive
    Advising/Counseling)
  • Get data and share it around
  • National Clearinghouse
  • College Results Online
  • SchoolUniversity Partnerships
  • Statewide Data Systems

30
REAL Collaboration
  • City-wide or District-wide Collaborations
  • Use data to identify gaps and hold people
    accountable
  • Leverage partnerships to provide support for ALL
    students

31
Comprehensive Counseling
  • Practice intrusive counseling
  • Examine literature, policies for mixed messages
  • Use data to identify gaps in participation,
    attitudes or perceptions
  • Coordinate services
  • Help others see the links between youth
    development and readiness

32
Building Peer Support
  • Peer college counseling programs
  • Partner w/ middle and elem schools
  • Build cohorts of students throughout high school
  • Use alums to create peer academic expectations
    and communities
  • Foster peer communities before transitions
  • Implement Peer Advising Programs

33
Empowering and Engaging Families
  • Educate/Engage families early (elem school)
  • Recognize extended families/communities
  • Consider how you define parental involvement
  • Encourage networking among families

34
Engaging Families cont.
  • Partnering with other agencies to reach parents
    (church, community agencies, family outreach
    offices, housing communities/projects)
  • Partner with school-based family specialists
  • Empower Family Members through trainings,
    workshops
  • It is more than just information

35
Consider TRANSITIONS
  • Grade 9 (at risk for drop out)
  • Post grad/summer
  • CC - Four-year college
  • Do articulation agreements help?
  • Who owns kids during these times?

36
  • Additional Information

37
Engaging Books
  • Black Ice, L. Carey
  • Hope in the Unseen, R. Suskind
  • The Gatekeepers, J. Steinberg
  • Greater Expectations, R. Turner
  • And Still They Rise, M. Corwin
  • First in the Family/ The College Years, Cushman

38
Research Oriented Books
  • Preparing for College Nine elements of effective
    outreach, Tierney, Corwin Colyar
  • African Americans and College Choice, Freeman.
  • Going to college How social, economic and
    educational factors influence the decisions
    students make, Hossler, Schmit and Vesper
  • Increasing access to college Extending
    possibilities to all students, Tierney and
    Hagedorn

39
Useful Websites
  • Pathways to College Network
  • www.pathwaystocollege.net
  • College Results Online www.collegeresults.org
  • CHEPA www.usc.edu/dept/chepa
  • Pell Institute www.pellinstitute.org
  • Condition of Education http//nces.ed.gov/programs
    /coe/
  • Chicago Dept of Postsecondary Education
  • Ccsr.uchicago.edu

40
Sources of recent reports
  • Institution for Higher Ed Policy (IHEP)
  • Pathways to College Network
  • Center for Higher Ed Policy Analysis (CHEPA)
  • PELL Institute for the Study of Opportunity in
    Higher Education
  • First in the Family (What Kids Can Do)

41
In closing..
  • Questions?
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