College Prep Program 2011

The Martha’s Vineyard Youth Leadership Initiative’s mission is to train young people to become leaders in their lives, their community and the world. MVYLI is a project of the Stone Soup Leadership Institute, a 501c3 non-profit organization founded on Martha’s Vineyard in 1997. MVYLI provides training and support to MVRHS students to prepare for college. Many of our students are the first in the family to go to college. Last year we had tremendous success. The Lumina-Darrell Foundation provided $3,000 scholarships to four MVYLI youth that benefited from our programs: Amoy Anderson, Shawna Brown, Kayla Johnson and Courtney Minnehan. MVYLI is a year-round program that begins with the annual Youth Leadership Summit in June. During this weeklong program we help youth to identify their dreams for their lives, their island and the world. During MVYLI’s College Preparatory and Field Trip Program we conduct weekly workshops and individual sessions with each youth to explore their career goals and college options. We meet with each of their guidance counselors to develop an action plan for the year. We meet with parents to clarify MVYLI’s program goals — and encourage them to attend Senior Parents Night and support them with the FASA application process. We conduct workshops to practice for the SAT’s and then assist them with their scholarship application process. Based upon feedback from colleges we visited last year, we will provide support for MVYLI to take the ACT (American College Testing) that is offered at Falmouth High School. We take them to Massachusetts’ colleges so they can meet professors and college advisors who can then assist them with their decision-making and application process. MVYLI’s Job Shadow Day helps translate youth passion with practical data regarding the job market. We conduct workshops and provide coaching from college students. Thanks to Vineyard Vineyard Conferencing, we are organizing interviews with colleges across the country so that MVYLI youth will expand their horizons.

MVYLI’s College Prep & Field Trip Program: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qX6mMOoh0Rc

MVYLI College Prep & Field Trip Program: Timeline 2011-2012

September MVYLI Orientation
Meetings with individual guidance counselors
Meetings with parents, encourage to attend Senior Night, FASA process
September-November College Field Trips
October-December SAT/ACT workshop and follow up practice sessions
Letters of recommendation written for MVYLI youth
January-March 2012 Scholarship application workshop and follow up sessions
March-May College decision-making process; financial aid follow up
June Presentation of scholarships to all graduating seniors

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Addressing the Need
Martha’s Vineyard youth have a higher than average drop out rate as college freshmen. They face various challenges – from adapting to off-island life to balancing studies and social activities. Some are from single parent families or the first in their family to attend college. Some don’t have the opportunity to visit colleges before they attend. They may study hard, get good grades, apply to college, get accepted, get financial aid and then travel there, sight unseen. MVYLI’s College Prep and Field Trip Program helps increase their chances, so they are more likely to stay in college, graduate and go forward towards their career goals. They are clearer about their goals and feel more prepared to visit colleges. “I realized that I should really get started on my college applications and financial aid as soon as possible,” says Kayla Johnson. “This got me really excited and motivated since it’s all a reality now!”

MVYLI College Preparatory and Field Trip Program: 2010-2012
Accomplishments

1. MVYLI Presentations
• Amoy Anderson, Student of the Month: presentation to MVRHS School Board: May 2011
• MVYLI College Prep & Field Trip Program at Youth Leadership Summit: June 2011

2. Videos Featured on Martha’s Vineyard Community Television
MVYLI’s College Prep & Field Trip Programhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qX6mMOoh0Rc
Pathways to Success… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mTkurRLc610&feature=related

3. MVYLI College Field Trip, MV Times, September 29, 2010

4. MVYLI Scholarships: Presented to all graduating seniors

It was indeed a pleasure to talk with you about the wonderful work done by you and the young people of the Martha’s Vineyard Youth Leadership Initiative. As Superintendent, I was impressed by the presentation made by Amoy Anderson at the Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School Committee meeting last year. Amoy was so poised and passionate about your work and what it had helped her accomplish. Please know that the Martha’s Vineyard Public Schools welcomes an ongoing relationship with the Initiative and hopes that its work will continue in years to come. I look forward to meeting with other students from your group and learning how we can collaborate in the future. James H. Weiss, Ed.D. Superintendent of Schools

MVYLI has been working in conjunction with the MVRHS high school guidance program to help students during their post secondary planning process. Students have been afforded opportunities to visit college campuses, meet with college officials and explore college options. The students involved in this program have found these trips to be useful and motivational. It has helped them crystallize their plans they have been working on with their guidance counselors. The adult leaders have been open to all levels of students and have tried to provide experiences in line with the student’s achievements and interests. This time of a student’s life is very stressful and time consuming. Having added support from MVYLI is beneficial to the students at MVRHS.
Michael McCarthy, Director of Guidance, Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School

I want to thank you for everything you have done for me. If I hadn’t met you I would not be able to accomplish all the things I have accomplished in the past year. Marianne you are an amazing human being and I enjoyed every second of our time spent doing better in and out of my community. I remember the first time I met you and I had plans of all the things I wanted to do and I had no idea how I would accomplish those dreams. But with your help and motivation I know I am able to do amazing things in my lifetime. Thanks for creating the MVYLI Youth Leadership Summit. Thanks for the college field trips and the scholarship workshops. You put your all to make these events happen. Thank you and God bless you for the great things you have done and will continue to do. With love and gratitude from Amoy (Anderson)

I want to thank you for everything you have done for me! The scholarships, the opportunities, the friendship…the list just goes on and on! It has honestly been a blessing experience with you. I honestly can’t thank you enough. I just want you to know how much you have changed my life! I will never forget you or what you have done for me! From Courtney (Minnehan)

I want to thank you so much for everything you have done for me. Going on college field trips and scholarship workshops have helped me so much in choosing where I want to go to college and which career path to choose. Even though there has been a few obstacles along the way, I realized my goal of attending a four-year college. Your scholarship has been such a great help to put towards my college funds. I really appreciate it. You are truly a great and amazing person!
Yours Thankfully, Shawna Brown

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