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learn / 2014

College Bound

Idea submitted in the My LA2050 Maker Challenge by Boys & Girls Clubs of the Los Angeles Harbor

College Bound's purpose is to introduce/expose Club members to idea of college and prepare them for a successful experience.

Please describe yourself.

Proposed collaboration (we want to work with partners!)

In one sentence, please describe your idea or project.

College Bound’s purpose is to introduce/expose Club members to idea of college and prepare them for a successful experience.

Does your project impact Los Angeles County?

Yes (benefits a population of LA County)

Which area(s) of LA does your project benefit?

  • Central LA
  • East LA
  • South LA
  • San Gabriel Valley
  • San Fernando Valley
  • South Bay
  • Westside

What is your idea/project in more detail?

College Bound provides teens (6th - 12th graders) with guidance, encouragement, and resources that they need to obtain their educational goals. Currently, we provide intensive and comprehensive one-on-one case management to over 1400 teens. Through College Bound’s one-on-one case management strategy, youth receive the guidance, support, and resources they need to meet the academic, financial, and testing requirements for public and private universities

What will you do to implement this idea/project?

We currently support 14 other boys and girls clubs in Los Angeles County in their efforts to implement our College Bound program, Further, we support 41 other organizations across the US. By adding additional resources we will help implement and support College Bound in the other Clubs in the Los Angeles area and other interested organizations.

How will your idea/project help make LA the best place to LEARN today? In 2050?

Since we created and implemented the College Bound program in 2002, we have seen the high school graduation rates of our members improve from less than 50% to 98% in 2013. Of these graduates, 97% enrolled in a 2 or 4 year college/university this past fall.

Whom will your project benefit?

We currently provides support services and case management to over 1400 students in grades six through twelve. College Bound staff work closely with and advocate for Club members to ensure that students are enrolled in the correct courses for high school graduation and college acceptance. This is a much-needed resource when almost half of the graduates in these communities do not have the required courses. Program staff works with students individually to identify educational and career goals. Each student receives assistance throughout the search and application processes related to college admission and scholarships.

Please identify any partners or collaborators who will work with you on this project.

Our primarily partnership is with other Boys & Girls Clubs, although we also partner with the Los Angeles Unified School District and currently serve youth on eleven LAUSD school sites.

How will your project impact the LA2050 “Learn” metrics?

  • Percentage of community college students completing a certificate, degree, or transfer-related program in six years
  • Youth unemployment and underemployment
  • District-wide graduation rates
  • HS student proficiency in English & Language Arts and Math
  • Academic Performance Index scores
  • College matriculation rates

Please elaborate on how your project will impact the above metrics.

Just 12 years ago, half of our teen Club members were not graduating – in June 2013, 98% graduated on time and 97% of those are going onto 4-year universities or community colleges. “College Bound” operates Monday – Saturday to provide the comprehensive activities and services necessary to fully engage these most at-risk youth. The Boys & Girls Clubs of the Los Angeles Harbor is committed to providing these future college graduates with the skills, tools, support and experiences they need to succeed in high school and beyond.

Please explain how you will evaluate your project.

College Bound’s current goals are to increase the high school graduation and college acceptance rates of youth in Los Angeles Harbor communities. Objectives are to: (1) serve a minimum of 1,500 youth (4th to 12th grade) each year; (2) maintain a 90% graduation rate of participants; and (3) have 90% of graduates accepted into colleges and universities.

What two lessons have informed your solution or project?

One, our success in the program in its 12 years of existence. Two, the success of program participants in attending and graduating from college and becoming successful members of the work force.

Explain how implementing your project within the next twelve months is an achievable goal.

The major factor preventing further expansion of the College Bound project is a lack of resources that would enable further replication of the program beyond our current boundaries. Specifically we need additional staff to reach out to other organizations, provide the initial training required to implement the program, and monitor the remote location and assist as needed.

Please list at least two major barriers/challenges you anticipate. What is your strategy for ensuring a successful implementation?

The first challenge is obtaining a commitment from other organizations to take the step to provide the program for their members. Fortunately the success of the program has created a demand for the College Bound program. We will further recruit other organizations with the additional resources available from the grant.

The second potential challenge is that of supporting the ongoing program at other locations. Again, additional resources will enable us to provide the necessary support.

What resources does your project need?

  • Money (financial capital)
  • Volunteers/staff (human capital)