DCAN Update | Mar. 20, 2020
We're here to help.
Dear Colleagues:

So much has happened in the last week. We see you and want you to know we're here for you during these challenging times. Here are the things we're working on :

  • We're currently working to understand the impact on admission dates the pandemic will have.
  • By the end of the month, we are working to launch virtual consults to talk through concerns about FAFSA, admissions or the Detroit Promise.

DCAN continues to not only monitor the situation, but will also continue to advocate for the success of Detroit's students .

I'd like to recognize the City of Detro it and Community Education Commission f or building COVID313.org , a guide for Detroit students & families in response to COVID-19. Please visit the site for up-to-date information.

Lastly, we've included a bit of celebration in this issue. We think the world needs this right now, so we hope you'll enjoy getting to meet our past and present AmeriCorps team since we did not have the opportunity celebrate them last week during AmeriCorps Week. Their work is vital to DCAN's mission and we appreciate everything they do!

With resolve,

Dr. Ashley Johnson
Executive Director, DCAN
COVID-19 Resources
Meet DCAN's AmeriCorps!
Onjila Odeneal , Strategy Director

"I was a VISTA over 10 years ago. I served as a community organizer and a service learning regional coordinator in Detroit schools. AmeriCorps VISTA was my segue into education as my undergraduate background was Business and Law.

I was heavily interested in community development as I was at the time running my own youth program in the community I grew up in.

My VISTA experience gave me the opportunity to serve the community and youth through education, which is what I've dedicated my life's work to. I pursued a Masters in Education: Educational Psychology with a focus on motivation stimulation to empower youth through igniting their passion for more in life. My role at DCAN as Strategy Director correlates with my passion for youth empowerment as I directly support and educate key stakeholders and serve as a thought partner on ways to help students reach their greatest potential."
Rachel D'Alio, Office Administrative Coordinator

"I joined DCAN as a VISTA in 2018. The AmeriCorps philosophy is all about service to others. I did a lot of the student facing work including planning Detroit College Day, conducting College 101 presentations, recruiting students for our SAT prep courses and supporting with other DCAN initiatives.

Joining AmeriCorps was a great decision for me. I think the students who face many barriers day-to-day have impacted me the most in this work. They show so much drive and perseverance given all the challenges and it inspires me to push myself every day. 

I am passionate about serving Detroit students and the educators who support them. Everything we do at DCAN is for the students and seeing just one person realize they are college material regardless of their background is what makes it worth it."
Justin Hudson,
AmeriCorps VISTA

"I am one of DCAN’s current AmeriCorps VISTAs. I earned a bachelor’s degree in History, Philosophy & Sociology from Michigan State University, where I spent time around multicultural involvement and mentorship of underclassmen.

I’m amazed at the number of students I was able to conduct outreach to during College 101 presentations. My service has allowed me to gain project management skills right after college being with DCAN!

As a Detroit native, I hope to help high school students find viable postsecondary options that they are passionate about after graduation."
Patrick Cornelius,
AmeriCorps VISTA

"I'm currently serving as one of DCAN’s AmeriCorp VISTAs. I earned a bachelor’s degree from Case Western Reserve University in Economics. Before moving to Michigan after graduation, I gained many years of work experience around customer service and relations in the state of Ohio. 

Serving with AmeriCorps at DCAN gives me the opportunity to really make a difference in Detroit's schools. It is incredibly rewarding to see how all of our work supports students, teachers and our community as a whole."
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