College Possible receives $1 Million from AT&T

1 of 10 Recipients of $9.25 Million in Contributions to Organizations Across the U.S.

Due to College Possible’s success supporting and motivating underserved students to prepare for college and earn their degrees, it has been selected as one of 10 recipients nationwide to share in $9.25 million in celebration of AT&T Aspire’s 10-year anniversary. Launched in 2008, AT&T Aspire is the company’s initiative to help provide access to education and training people need to get and keep good jobs.

College Possible is receiving $1 million from AT&T Aspire for programs in Minnesota and Pennsylvania, with $800,000 earmarked for 22 Minnesota schools serving 1,600 high school students.

“For our country to succeed in the 21st century, our workforce needs the right skills, and young people need a high school diploma to stay on track for college and career success,” said Paul Weirtz, state president for AT&T Minnesota. “Through Aspire, we support programs that help students who need it the most walk across the graduation stage ready for their future. We are excited to provide this $1 million contribution to support College Possible’s efforts to help youth from low-income backgrounds graduate high school and attend college.”

The $1 million AT&T contribution will support program enhancements serving nearly 2,000 high school students from low-income backgrounds, of whom 64% are female, in Minnesota and Pennsylvania, to improve the quality of information available for students as they decide where to apply and ultimately enroll in college, and to engage families and trusted adults in students’ college-going decision making in more meaningful ways.

“Our mission is to open the door of opportunity and make college admission and graduation possible for students from low-income backgrounds through an intensive curriculum of coaching and support,” said Beth Giese, Senior Director of External Relations for College Possible. “We are very grateful for AT&T’s generous financial support as we work to empower these students on the path to college success and graduation.”

Progress has been made since the Aspire program was first launched. The 2015-16 national high school graduation rate now stands at 84.1%, an all-time high and up from 74.9% for the class of 2008. But as a part of the Grad Nation campaign to drive America to a 90% high school graduation rate by 2020, more work needs to be done.

Currently, 1 in 6 students fails to graduate high school on time with their class. The 10 non-profits, including College Possible, are working on the front lines every day to change the fate of those students. They were selected from previous AT&T Aspire competitive funding awardees based on their effectiveness in helping students graduate ready for career or college. These programs use evidence-based approaches and are able to demonstrate a measurable impact on the students they serve.

College Possible students are four times more likely to earn a college degree than their low-income peers, and they graduate at nearly the same rate as the national average, signaling that College Possible’s interventions level the playing field for low-income students.

AT&T invests in education and job training to create a skilled and diverse workforce that powers our company – and our country – for the future. Since 2008, they’ve committed $450 million to programs to help millions of students in all 50 states and around the world through the AT&T Aspire initiative. AT&T Aspire brings together the power of our network – our employees, our technology and organizations – to connect people to opportunities through education and job training.

For more information, contact:
Jessica Erickson
AT&T Public Affairs

  • Meet Jessica

    “Making it through college, a step that people think is impossible for students with backgrounds like mine, is the most amazing thing.”

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    “If I could describe my experience as a college student in one word—it would be ‘amazing!'”

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