Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Depaul College Visit

On Columbus Day (or as the Venezuelans call it, the Day of Indigenous Resistence) my Tutor/Mentor Connection colleague Nicole and I accompanied a group of potentially college bound students from Cabrini Connections on a private visit to Depaul University. I set up this visit (and numerous others) to give the kids an opportunity to learn more about the different options they will be presented with once they graduate high school. On this particular visit, our students, Yolanda (Yoyo), Breonca
(Beebee), Cierria (Cici), Dijana and Charles, learned about the potential advantages and disadvantages of attending a large private Vincentian university right smack dab in the middle of Lincoln Park. I was impressed by the diversity of the student body and their emphasis on learning through service. The kids were very interested to learn that according to Princeton Review, Depaul has the most diverse student body in the nation as well as some of the happiest students.

Yoyo, being interested in business and marketing in particular was happy to find out that business is one of the most popular areas of study at DePaul. Cierria, on the other hand, was surprised with the lack of courses offered in design, particularly fashion design. For Dijana, our current student in the spotlight, this visit served to confirm her desire to attend Depaul once she graduates so that she can study education and mathematics to prepare for a rewarding career as a High School math teacher. During our visit, Dijana made particular inquiries about dorms, trying to figure out which of the various living and learning communities would be best for her. We look forward to helping her set up these future visits if necessary and ensuring that she has adequate resources while working on her Depaul application.

It was clear that during our visit, our students learned a great deal about not only the college admissions process but the whole college experience. Since we scheduled the visit on a day where Depaul students were in school, but Chicago Public School students had off, our kids were able to see students hastily making their way from class to class, relaxing in the quad, signing petitions in the student union and organizing fundraisers in the dining hall. Though everyone said that the experience was beneficial, it was especially encouraging to hear that every one of our students is planning on attending the next college visit I've planned, which will be next Friday, Oct 24th, at Westwood College. In fact, the kids don't know it yet, but I'm planning on having them tell the rest of the students about how eye-opening their Depaul University visit was at our tutoring sessions this week in order to ensure a better turnout to our upcoming visits (which include Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago State University, University of Illinois at Chicago and Northwestern University).

While on the subject of college preperation, I'm in the process of compiling a college prep library for our high school students that will consist of ACT and SAT prep books/CDs, princeton review and other guides to colleges, SAT subject test prep guides as well as a collection of successful admissions essays from various schools. Therefore, if you have any of the materials that I just mentioned, and I know you must if you are either attending college now or are a graduate, please consider donating them to Cabrini Connections so that our kids might benefit. Please email me at chris.warrens.mail@gmail.com, call me at 312-492-9614 or leave me a comment here on the blog and we can coordinate a way to get your college prep materials in the hands of some kids who could really benefit from them. Thanks so much for your time and generosity. I hope to be hearing from you soon.

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