College Possible Philadelphia is well into the recruitment of sophomores to join our program for next year. From tabling during our partner schools’ lunches to hosting info sessions during and after school, we have been hard at work to make sure students know of all the ways we support them once in the program. I spoke with a few of our Corps members to gauge how recruitment season has been at their schools.
Recruitment for College Possible begins with a high energy week of music, posters, and candy; we call this Hoopla. Our recruitment groups are very deliberate in making our presence known within the schools during Hoopla. Senior Coach, Susie, spoke about Upper Darby High School’s spirited week of recruitment as their “biggest effort to reach out to students.” From posting flyers all over the campus to speaking in front of homeroom classes to tabling in the cafeteria during lunch, Susie described Hoopla as a “very crazy week, but definitely very successful.”
Hoopla, of course, is not the end all be all of recruitment. The process lasts a couple of months as we strive for all students who are interested to have the ability to apply. This is not something that goes unnoticed by the administration and faculty at our partner schools. It is from them that College Coach, Sarah—who is part of the recruitment team at Mastbaum AVT High School—says her team has received some of the strongest support. “The faculty at Mastbaum has been incredibly supportive. Even before Hoopla we received a surplus of teacher recommendations. During info sessions, teachers stressed to their students how important the information we were presenting was to their futures.” The support doesn’t just come from administration and faculty, however. Students already in the program have made a large impact on recruitment efforts. Parkway Senior Coach, Natalie, relayed how helpful current College Possible students are to recruitment: “Some things we’ve been told in interviews is that they’ve heard from other students how helpful College Possible is. They hear a lot from older students and look to them as role models.”
And the term role model is an understatement when regarding students who find their way to College Possible. We see their drive and ambition every day, and are consistently inspired by even being able to hear their stories. Natalie put it best when elaborating on moments that stood out to her so far in during recruitment: “We had one student who spoke about how he really wants to be a role model for other people in his community. I remember him having really distinctive and profound interests in certain subjects, and I have had a lot of students similar to him who already know what they want to do and know the route to get there.” The students who come to our program are not only seeking to better themselves, but their communities at large, and for that we at College Possible will forever be motivated to provide them the best support possible.