ST. PAUL, Minn. (March 3, 2011) – Admission Possible partnered with LearningWorks and the Minnesota Minority Education Partnership to put on the fourth annual Summer Enrichment Fair on February 26 at the Blake School. More than 250 low-income students from the Twin Cities had access to 14 summer programs encompassing diverse interests such as conservation and outdoor exploration, healthcare, entrepreneurship, theatre performance and social justice.
The opportunity to stay intellectually engaged over the summer helps students explore future career paths and fields of study, while preparing them to return to the classroom in the fall. Research from the Center for Summer Learning at The Johns Hopkins University shows that teachers spend a good deal of time in the fall re-teaching skills lost during the summer, sometimes called “summer slide.”
The loss of learning acutely affects low-income students like those who participate in Admission Possible, a free after-school college success program, because they are less likely than their higher income peers to participate in organized activities over the summer. Admission Possible’s two-year high school curriculum requires that juniors apply to at least one summer enrichment opportunity, and many students apply for more.
“By participating in summer enrichment programs students augment their resumes, but more importantly they explore their interests, deepen social, academic and leadership skills, and interact with career mentors,” said Magdalena Wells, Admission Possible’s coordinator for the enrichment fair. “The fair connects our students to wonderful programs that help prepare them for college.”
LearningWorks, the fair’s hosting organization, offers Minneapolis middle school students a challenging academic enrichment program to start them on the path to college. LearningWorks Executive Director Max Delgado saw partnering with Admission Possible as a chance to help young people in both programs gain skills and practices that will help prepare them for college.
“It was a great opportunity for all of us to work together,” Delgado said. “In the end, this event accomplished exactly what we hoped it would – our kids left inspired and informed.”
Admission Possible is a nonprofit organization founded in Minnesota in 2000 and making college admission and success possible for low-income students through and intensive curriculum of coaching and support. The program currently operates in two metro areas – the Twin Cities and Milwaukee, with the goal of working in as many as 10 cities by 2015. In 2010-11, Admission Possible is serving more than 1,600 low-income high school students through its core program, supporting 2,750 former high school program participants as they pursue a college degree and providing 3,000 freshmen and sophomores with college planning workshops. Since 2000, 98 percent of Admission Possible students have earned admission to college.
LearningWorks at Blake: A Breakthrough Program, offers a challenging tuition-free academic enrichment program to a representative group of highly motivated middle school students enrolled in Minneapolis Public Schools, preparing them to enter and succeed in rigorous high school programs; and, to draw talented high school and college students into the education field by engaging them in the art of teaching.