Angie Erdman, a teacher at Big Picture High School was looking for help funding a trip for the schools juniors so she submitted an Excel Grant application last fall. “We would like to take our juniors on a “College Hop” in central and eastern Washington. We would like our students, mostly first generation college students, to experience life on a college campus, including shadowing college classes and spending the night in a residence hall. We need money to fund travel costs as well as food and lodging.”
Our goal was to expose first generation college students to colleges and increase their desire and belief and engagement in their post high school education. We were able to take 15 juniors on an overnight college trip to Eastern Washington to visit 3 universities (WSU, EWU, CWU). Students were able to meet with admissions personal, get tours of the schools, meet with student groups and shadow college classes.
Students bonded over this trip and formed a tight knit college bound community. Students expressed a strong desire to continue their education after high school. Many students who never expressed interest in continuing their education after high school are now working towards applying to colleges in the fall. Every student who attended this trip now has plans on applying and going to college after high school.
If you are a teacher in the Highline Schools District and are interested in our Excel Grant program, you can find more information on our website. Grant requests are accepted each fall, and we announce the program on our website and Facebook.