A small after-school program, branded i.am College Track in homage to founding partner musician will.i.am and his i.am angel foundation, launched in Boyle Heights four years ago with 45 students. Last week it graduated all 45 of them.
In 2012, College Track opened in the Los Angeles community of Boyle Heights with the promise to take students to and through college. Four years later, we celebrate the 45 high school graduates who are heading off to college in the fall. Reaching this milestone took courage, confidence, and determination. "Defying Odds on the Path to College," takes us through the journey of two of our Boyle Heights graduates.
As first-generation college applicants begin the road to higher education, they encounter many barriers to completing college. College Track New Orleans helps to guide high school students from underserved communities to college graduation by providing academic support, leadership training, financial and college advising, and scholarships.
On November 12th, we celebrated the launch of College Track Watts. It was truly a historic occasion. As our country marked the 50th anniversary of the Watts riots, we made a commitment--in partnership with the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles, Partnership for Los Angeles Schools and Green Dot Public Schools--to long-lasting change for the students and families of Watts. Mayor Eric Garcetti and Councilman Joe Buscaino joined our ninth grade student Alex and alumna Kyra in speaking at our celebration in the Jordan Downs housing development.
Univision recently aired a segment that featured College Track and Roosevelt High School senior, Cynthia Erenas. It follows Cynthia's story as she pursues her passion for STEM. Watch here
Saskia Pallais, Los Angeles Regional Executive Director, was recently featured in PBS SOCAL's American Graduate Champion series. Watch Saskia's story and hear about her commitment to help College Track students in Los Angeles achieve their dream to graduate from college.
Students of color are gaining entry into the nation’s colleges and universities in increasing numbers, but they aren’t graduating at the same rate as their peers.
While the reasons for this vary for each person, an underlying issue for most is that none of their relatives is a graduate. They don’t have one person to consult or lean upon when they encounter financial obstacles, academic challenges or, occasionally, discouragement from faculty.
Last month, College Track Regional Executive Director, Eddie Koen spoke at the Denver City Council Legislative Meeting about the obstacles facing low-income students. Today, fifty percent of adults in Denver have an associate’s degree or higher, yet the city has one of the highest equity gaps between whites and non-whites in the nation. These incredible young people are not given the opportunity to succeed.
College Track is committed to empowering students from underserved communities to graduate from college. In 2016, we plan to open a second Colorado site at Abraham Lincoln High School in partnership with Denver Public Schools.
The Fox News series "Beyond The Dream" and award winning host Kelly Wright, highlight College Track San Francisco and our amazing students. Watch the video here
In July, College Track launched its eighth site in the Los Angeles community of Watts in partnership with Jordan High School. Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti says "the Watts community has a bright future ahead." College Track and other organizations are bringing much needed resources to the community.
College Track students Samrawit Keleta and Cendy De La Torre will join First Lady Michelle Obama and 130 college-bound students from across the country to participate in the 2015 Beating the Odds Summit on Thursday, July 23. As part of the First Lady’s Reach Higher initiative, these students represent a mix of urban, rural, foster, homeless, special needs, and underrepresented youth who have overcome substantial obstacles to persist through high school and make it to college.
College Track, a national college completion program that empowers students from underserved communities to graduate from college, will hold its fourteenth annual graduation ceremony on Thursday, May 21st at Electronic Arts. A total of 194 high school and college students will participate in the ceremony, including graduates from UC Berkeley, UC Davis, Howard University, and San Francisco State.
Chase, our Lead California Financial Services Partner, highlights the work of will.i.am and i.am College Track in this week’s Chase Spotlight.
Los Angeles, CA – i.am College Track, a college completion program that empowers students from underserved communities to reach their dream of a college degree, announced that it has been awarded a grant for $21,000 from the Los Angeles Dodges Foundation to support its Academic Summer Advancement Program.
Oakland, CA – College Track CEO, Elissa Salas and David Silver joined President Obama, the First Lady, and Vice President Biden at the second White House College Opportunity Day of Action. We were among hundreds of higher education leaders including college presidents, nonprofit executives, and advocates of equal post-secondary education access. Collectively, organizations announced over 600 new actions to help more students prepare for and graduate from college.
College Track celebrated the grand opening of its seventh national site on October 2nd, 2014 alongside Mayor Kevin Johnson, Chase, and the California Endowment. The new center, located in the Oak Park neighborhood, is the culmination of a strategic partnership between College Track, Mayor Kevin Johnson, St. Hope Public Schools, and Sacramento Charter High School in response to the unmet educational needs in the community. Presently, nearly half of Oak Park adult residents have not earned a high school diploma, and only eight percent have a college degree.
Transition is a natural part of growth. To that end, after much reflection David Silver has decided to transition out of his role as the CEO of College Track. He will continue to serve as a Senior Advisor for the balance of the 2014/15 school year to ensure a seamless transition for our students and staff.
Following the historic launch of TheDream.US on February 4, 2014, the first national scholarship program for Dreamers, the inaugural class of scholars has been selected. Among them, nine College Track Dreamers received over $50,000 in scholarship funds towards their college education.
On January 16th, Troy Simon introduced First Lady Michelle Obama at a White House forum focused on expanding college opportunities for students. College Track joined college and university Presidents, national foundations, individual and government representatives, and similar education non-profits from across the country at the White House event.