“A Better Chance” Gives Students of Color Educational Opportunities

Photo courtesy of A Better Chance. ( left to right, back row): Daniella Garcia, Melia Henderson, Sydney Green, Arianne Pulley, Desiree Medley
(left to right,front row) Adenji Asabi-Shakir, Ixchel Ramirez, Luis Rodrigues, Marcus Kennedy Grimes, Joshua Valasquez

Photo courtesy of A Better Chance. ( left to right, back row): Daniella Garcia, Melia Henderson, Sydney Green, Arianne Pulley, Desiree Medley (left to right,front row) Adenji Asabi-Shakir, Ixchel Ramirez, Luis Rodrigues, Marcus Kennedy Grimes, Joshua Valasquez

A Better Chance, established in 1963, is the oldest national organization of its kind that works to create educational opportunities for academically talented youth of color in low-income communities.

Through its College Preparatory Schools Program, the organization helps to get committed students of color accepted into top middle and high schools and help them become future global leaders in society.

More than 14,000 students have become leading professionals in various fields including science, technology, and the arts since the organizations founding.

“It’s one thing to be a big fish at a struggling school, whether its public, private or charter, but if your child wants to go to a top college, you can’t be comfortable with that,” said Prasant Nakalapati, Northwest Region Program Manager of A Better Chance.

Most of the participating students come from working class families, and extra financial support is needed to ensure their success. With application fees ranging form $80-100 per application, families can become deterred, but A Better Chance is committed to helping families.

“We are kind of like unpaid consultants, and our purpose to is to help create future leaders of color,” Nakalapati added. “We do a whole lot with a whole little.”

Along with providing subsidized college tours, the organization also follows the students until they graduate, noting that a student’s success isn’t marked just by being accepted into a school.

And for all interested families, the necessary focus and commitment is needed to complete the three-step application process. For example, for middle school admission assistance families begin A Better Chance’s application process in spring of their 4th grade year; for 9th grade application assistance, families begin the application process in the spring of the 7th grade year.

The program is free to all families once accepted. The next application process opens Feb.15, and all materials are due by May 1. For more information or to attend an informational session, visit www.abetterchance.org

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