August, 2017
College Now Receives $50,000 Grant from The Coca-Cola Foundation

College Now Greater Cleveland recently received $50,000 from The Coca-Cola Foundation to bolster its college and career access advising work in the Cleveland Metropolitan School District (CMSD).
 
College Now deploys 20 full-time advisors and over 30 AmeriCorps College Guides and Career Coaches in CMSD throughout the school year who provide a wide range of college and career readiness advising and financial aid counseling services, including career exploration; ACT preparation and test registration; college exploration, applications and enrollment; financial aid advising; targeted, competitive, renewable, need-based scholarships; and retention and mentoring services.

Lee Friedman, CEO of College Now, said, "We are extremely grateful for The Coca-Cola Foundation's investment in our work in CMSD. Ensuring that every CMSD student has a postsecondary plan and can access the resources to pursue those plans is critical to our community's success. The Coca-Cola Foundation is investing in Cleveland's future by investing in Cleveland's students."
Mentoring Program Kicks off Seventh Program Year
 
A new pair meets for the first time at the Mentoring Kick-Off
On Thursday, August 3 rd, the Mentoring Program marked the start of its seventh program year with the annual Mentoring Program Kick-off. This year, 375 people attended, including mentors, mentees and college representatives. Over 150 pairs were able to meet for the first time at the event.
 
Lee Friedman, CEO of College Now began the event, and Board chair Alan Kopit took the stage as emcee, highlighting the importance of the night for pairs having their first meeting, and also for students as they prepared to start college. Next, recent graduate and former mentee Saja Abid and her former mentor, Donna Friedman, shared their personal reflections on the program. Saja encouraged students to take full advantage of the Mentoring Program and left them with these inspiring words: "The last piece of advice I can give you is that you are the only one who knows what you are truly capable of . . . . So no matter what anyone says, if you believe you can make something happen, then you can. You just have to believe in yourself." Donna echoed this: "You are here because you understand the value of your experiences, and because you know how important it can be to have someone who believes in you." Following our speakers, students and mentors had time to talk and get to know one another, enjoy refreshments and take photos at a photo booth. When the event drew to a close at 7 pm, the room was full of great conversations!
Now Recruiting Juniors and Seniors for impACT
 
College Now is recruiting for impACT, a FREE, 8-week program focusing on ACT preparation and college and career readiness. This program  is administered by College Now Greater Cleveland in partnership with the Cleveland Public Library, Esperanza, Euclid Public Library, Warrensville Heights City School District and Wellington Exempted Village Schools.
impACT helps students meet state and local standards in core academic subject areas, specifically mathematics and reading. The impACT team works toward enhancing ACT test-taking strategies, providing enrichment activities that complement students' regular academic programming and giving students the necessary tools to prepare for postsecondary education. An 8-week session at impACT includes two ACT practice exams, two parent sessions, a parent orientation before the session begins and a college and career project.
Upon completion of the program, students are eligible for a $100 stipend if they attended 30 days of the session  and raised their ACT mathematics, reading or composite score by two points. Additionally, students that complete the program are eligible to participate in college tours.
impACT is hosted at five locations throughout the Greater Cleveland Area:
  • Cleveland Public Library Main Branch: 325 Superior Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44114
      • October 10 - December 8; 4 - 7 p.m.
         
  • Esperanza: 3104 West 25th Street, Cleveland, OH 44109
      • September 18 - November 9; 3 - 6 p.m.
         
  • Euclid Public Library: 631 East 222nd Street, Euclid, OH 44123
      • September 18 - November 10; 2:40 - 5:40 p.m.
         
  • Warrensville Heights High School: 4270 Northfield Road, Warrensville Heights, OH 44128
      • September 18 - November 10; 3 - 6 p.m.
         
  • Wellington High School (Lorain): 629 N. Main Street, Wellington, OH 44090
      • September 18 - November 10; 3 - 6 p.m.
Click  here to register for the Fall session of impACT.
College Now Thanks New Partner Bank of America
 
A multinational banking and financial services corporation, Bank of America is the second largest bank in the United States. In Greater Cleveland, Bank of America and its employees have developed a strong - and growing - partnership with College Now for which we are most appreciative.
 
Through support awarded from the Bank of America Foundation's Economic Mobility Initiative, College Now continues to provide its impactful mentoring program to over 1,100 scholarship recipients, pairing each student individually with mentors from our community. Our scholarship recipients, who come from low-income backgrounds, are often the first in their families to pursue postsecondary education. Our mentors, who come from over 400 employers across Northeast Ohio, shoulder the work of helping students persist and graduate by connecting with their mentees, sharing their own college experiences, serving as sounding boards and offering advice to help students solve problems. While the majority of the mentoring occurs through an online platform, pairs meet in person several times a year at College Now-sponsored events or on their own. The program has seen great success, with a current freshman to sophomore retention rate of 93% and a projected college graduation rate for the first cohort in the program in 2018 expected to be well above 70%.
 
In addition to its philanthropic support, Bank of America employees give their time to College Now through Board service and as volunteer mentors. There are nine Bank of America employees serving as mentors; beyond developing individual relationships with their own mentees, the mentors from Bank of America have hosted an event for all their mentees as well as shared internship opportunities with their students.
 
Thank you, Bank of America for your support!
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