San Marcos CISD students currently in grades 8-12 and their parents are invited to participate in the third and final workshop in a series addressing college preparation. The event is at the San Marcos High School on May 20, 2008, from 6-8:30 pm. Pizza and child care are provided. The March workshop addressed college preparation, and the April meeting dealt with funding issues.
The second of the dialogue series (April) had an attendance of 47 San Marcos CISD students and 51 parents, for a total of 98 participants. The May 20 workshop will cover retention, succeeding in college, and the changing roles of parent and student.
Although workshop two mainly covered Financial Aid related topics, facilitators also touched on various steps for parents and college-bound students to take during grades 9-12. Other topics addressed included the types of colleges and costs, what to consider when researching colleges, admission requirements, how to apply for financial aid, and tips on scholarships available. The students attending the sessions spent time researching different colleges at a mini-college fair.
According to Pre-College Workshop Coordinator Roseanna Sandoval, “First Generation” is a term used for students whose parents did not graduate from a four year college, and the workshops provided have been very successful. “The greatest success reported,” she said, “is the actual discussion held with the participants in attendance. During the planning process, we obtained feedback from local Upward Bound scholars and their parents on what college-related topics they felt that they needed more information about, and we constructed our workshops around their requests. In addition, we have staff facilitating adult and youth groups for our Spanish speaking families.”
Sandoval adds, “What we heard repeatedly in our evaluations was that families felt they received the most valuable information during their group discussions-not only from their group facilitator, but also from each other during the open environment to ask question.”
The series of dialogue workshops were funded through a Texas State University-San Marcos P-16 Grant initiative. Additional funding for the this project was provided from a Multicultural Programs Committee Grant awarded to the First Generation Student Organization (FGSO), Multicultural Student Affairs (Upward Bound Program and Talent Search), FGSO, Undergraduate Admissions, the University Bookstore, San Marcos CISD, the San Marcos High School Career Center, the Texas State University Financial Aid office, and the San Marcos community.
The commitment of the staff involved is what has made the series possible, and the organizers wish to thank the many volunteers from the Texas State University’s First Generation Student Organization, staff from the Upward Bound program and Talent Search, and several community social workers. Special recognition goes to Director Sonya Lopez, Workshop Coordinator Roseanna Sandoval, Parent Group Coordinator Dorelia Silva, Youth Group Coordinators Jonathan Sample and Phillip Williams, Media Coordinator Jerry Cervantez, and Auxiliary members Loretta Alcala, Mari Garza, Jenny Campbell, Mark McAlister, and Liza Lopez.
For more information about the workshops, please call 512-245-3838.
By IRIS CAMPBELL
Public Information Officer – San Marcos CISD
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Youth and parent participants at workshop 2