Parent University: Providing Educational Opportunities for Immigrant Workers and their Families
September 2016 Newsletter
The Benefits of Peer to Peer Engagement
Alejandra Morales  AmeriCorps VISTA  Summer Associate at BSP Los Angeles and daughter of ABLE janitor, Jose Luis, reflects on her own experience with the PU program. BSP has partnered with the  Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) to host 5 undergraduate students as Summer Associates for an 8 week period to provide training and increase BSP's capacity. Alejandra was introduced to BSP by her father and immediately recognized the benefits of peer to peer and two-generational engagement in higher education. Alejandra addressed the PU workshops as a space for her  father to receive essential information on how to be involved in her education and encouraged her to contribute to the PU work at BSP. Alejandra received the Mike Garcia Scholarship in 2015 which helped pay for tuition and other scholarly expenses at Kalamazoo College in Michigan. Alejandra's enthusiasm for our work at BSP enables the success of our summer PU workshops and college campus visits. 
"Through the Parent University workshops, I got closer to my father and other BSP members and decided I wanted to continue doing work not only for myself but for the children of other immigrant workers." -Alejandra Morales
Alejandra currently double majors in Chemistry & Anthropology/Sociology and hopes to pursue a career in agriculture.
Jose Luis and the Personal Impact of PU Programs

Lupita's Experience with Parent University
Lupita and her family at the Mike Garcia Scholarship ceremony.
BSP continues to engage families through PU classes in Northern California. Guadalupe Aburto (Lupita) who worked with the BSP team in San Jose as an AmeriCorps Vista Summer Associate, says she was inspired by the determination of her older sister, Yesenia Santos, a first-generation student at Evergreen Valley College and recipient of the Mike Garcia Scholarship.
 Although initially hesitant to apply for the Summer Associate position, Lupita admits that it was Yesenia's encouragement and support that motivated her to take on this new opportunity. 

"Working with BSP I've learned to communicate better with others and I feel confident now about starting college. I feel like I know more about different people and programs that can help me be a successful college student and I feel more confident looking for the support I need...I am surprised to see how many people are out there ready to help." -Guadalupe Aburto

BSP has made notable headway in further developing our regional PU programming with the help of Lupita, while continuing to actively engage candidates for the upcoming 2016 Mike Garcia Scholarship recipient class. 
Envisioning the College Experience at UCSB
With the support of LA United Way and Americorp Vista, workers and their families, a total of 90 participants, traveled to UC Santa Barbara where they received information on admissions, fields of study, and financial aid. 

For many parents and students, it is the first time stepping onto a college campus. Doing so allowed them to envision the opportunities afforded by a higher education. Trips to college campuses, such as UCSB, are motivating factors for many families to continue being involved in their children's education. 
Foundations and Partners Support Aquarium Visit
With the support of the  Kellogg Foundation, United WayAmeriCorps Vista, and through partnership with UCLA Labor Center, BSP was able to coordinate a trip to the Aquarium of the Pacific in Los Angeles. 44 children and their family members participated in the visit as well as in arts and crafts projects and story telling activities. BSP recognizes the importance of exposing families to museums and cultural events not only to advance cognitive, social, and emotional development but to instill the joy of learning and discovery in children of BSP participants.
NCLR Awards Grant for CHISPA Workshops
BSP was recently awarded  a one-year grant from NCLR to support parents and increase their capacity to be active partners in their children's education. BSP will continue to implement the " CHISPA" curriculum which includes inquiry-based lessons that provide opportunities for indoor and outdoor investigations to engage elementary-age children in science. Through the collaboration with NCLR and CHISPA, BSP participating families will take a field trip to the California Science Center in September as part of its continued efforts to support two-generational learning.
Other News
BSP Awarded Continuation Grant with CNCS.
BSP has been approved for a one-year continuation grant from the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS). Since 2008, BSP has partnered with the CNCS to increase capacity and provide training to participants throughout the state of California. As a result of this relationship and its successes, the CNCS has approved a continuation grant of 7 VISTA members and 5 Summer Associates. VISTA members commit to serve full-time for a year. 
OC Opportunity Initiative Grant to Support BSP Orange County Programs 
BSP has been awarded the OC Opportunity Initiative Grant from the Orange County Community Foundation. This $50,000 grant will support our outreach efforts to strengthen and support Orange County's immigrant workers and their families. Thank you Orange County Community Foundation! 

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