11/26/13 - Student Futures Project in the News

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Over the past week, three articles in the Austin American-Statesman have highlighted the work produced by the Center’s Student Futures Project. The first article, titled “Little Progress in Effort to get more Austin-Area students to College,” speaks to the challenges that Central Texas faces in trying to increase college enrolment. In this article, the Center’s Greg Cumpton explains that Central Texas has experienced a surge in the number and share of lower-income students who are typically not as inclined to go to college.

The second article, published on the 18th, places special emphasis on the fact that college enrollment for lower-income groups is on the rise, increasing by six percentage points in the last four years. Finally, an editorial piece was published. Citing RMC data and analysis, the piece praises the Austin Chamber of Commerce for its role in supporting education in the area. “The Austin chamber has the right idea in using its own resources to help Central Texas schools. In all, the chamber has steered $1.5 million to schools to help boost graduation and college enrollment rates. It has paid for the new Counselors Portal program for area districts that help counselors track high school students in a similar way as Austin’s Project Advance program does. The chamber’s funding also goes toward tutoring graduating students who are not college-ready and last summer’s pilot, Summer Melt, which paid high school counselors through the summer to help students, particularly those who are first-generation college-goers, to finish the application process.”

Increasing interest in the Student Futures Project points to the fact that Central Texas and other parts of the country are taking a closer look at how they can mold policies that will help high school students in their transition from high school to college.

Ray Marshall Center

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