Guest Post by Kate Watts from Tennessee College Access & Success Network. Built in partnership by UBS, the Tennessee College Access and Success Network and Discovery Education, The TalentED Project establishes an online community of college access and admissions professionals that introduces students to schools that increase their likelihood of graduation and future success.
First-generation and lower-income students face unique challenges during the college admissions process. The TalentED Project aims to ensure that students realize the higher education options that are available to them, and we work tirelessly to identify and connect them with schools that meet their academic, social, and financial needs.
So much of college access efforts rely on professionals’ time and networks. Sure, we have the schools we are familiar with and that many of our students end up attending but what do we do when a student is interested in a school that is outside of our organization’s network? Do we have the time to comb through all of the available data on a college to see if it is a good fit for a student, or to figure out who to contact at the admissions office to answer our questions? Ideally yes, but probably no.
That’s why college access professionals from 220+ community-based organizations and high schools across the country have signed up for The TalentED Project, a free digital tool that connects college access and admissions professionals to match first-generation, lower-income college-goers with select four-year colleges. College access professionals are using the tool’s selection criteria and badge system to identify the colleges where lower-income and first-generation students are most likely to be successful.
Most importantly, college access professionals are finding that The TalentED Project has allowed them to make new connections with over 150 admissions recruiters at a growing list of more than 90 colleges, leading to potential new opportunities for their students. For example, Christina Fontenot, Director of College Counseling at Cohen College Prep in New Orleans, connected with an admissions recruiter from Earlham College and arranged a visit to her school. This visit gave her students the opportunity to develop a personal connection with an out-of-state admissions recruiter at an institution they might not have previously considered. To date, over 300 similar connections between college access professionals and admissions recruiters have been facilitated. Through expanded lines of communication between college access programs and higher education institutions, The TalentED Project has increased the opportunities available to our students!
Join our community of professionals who are committed to increasing access for your students by signing up for a free account on The TalentED Project today. After completing your profile, invite your students to the site and connect them with admissions recruiters. And while you’re at it, please share this video with your students to show them how they can use this resource to find their good-fit school!