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CISCF Partners with AT&T Aspire Mentoring Program

By on Jun 24, 2013 in News |

CISCF Partners with AT&T Aspire Mentoring Program

Communities In Schools of Cape Fear Partners with AT&T

to Help Prepare Local High School Students for College, Careers

Wilmington (NC) – Wilmington-area high school students are getting a first-hand look at career opportunities beyond high school, thanks to a new initiative from Communities In Schools of Cape Fear (CIS) and AT&T’s Aspire Mentoring Academy.

More than 30 students from New Hanover High School and the Mary Mosley Performance Learning Center will meet with AT&T employees at the company’s New Center Drive store to learn about careers in the telecommunications industry, as well as practice interviewing skills and discuss life goals, beginning with the importance of high school graduation as a foundation for future successes.

“In today’s digital economy, education is essential,” said state Sen. Thom Goolsby (R-Wilmington). “And a key milestone in a young person’s educational journey is their high school diploma. I am pleased to see this initiative by Communities In Schools, which is literally changing the lives of these students.”

“The issue of high school dropouts is important because when a student gives up on their education, they are giving up on their future,” said state Rep. Rick Catlin (R-Wilmington). “When businesses with a commitment to corporate citizenship come together with organizations like CIS in supporting the work and dedication of educators, they are helping protect one of our most precious resources: the talents and abilities of our children.”

The mentoring opportunity AT&T and Communities In Schools of Cape Fear are providing in Wilmington, is just one of several pilots underway nationwide that are designed to broaden students’ awareness about future career opportunities.

Through Aspire Mentoring Academy, AT&T is helping to raise high school graduation rates with the goal to provide students 1 million hours of mentoring by AT&T employees through the end of 2016. AT&T has awarded a grant of $17,628 to provide partial funding for a CIS site coordinator position, in addition to the contribution to the mentoring program.

“We understand that there is no better way to make a lasting difference in the community than by helping support the education of its young people,” said John Lyon, Regional Director of External Affairs for AT&T North Carolina. “That’s why we are excited about the opportunity to work with CIS to help high school students better understand and embrace opportunities which lie before them. We hope the students will leave this experience inspired to complete high school and equipped with the knowledge they will need to succeed in college, the workplace and beyond.”

“We are thrilled to have the support of both Senator Goolsby and Representative Catlin as we work to help keep students in school and prepare for life,” said Louise Hicks, Executive Director for Communities In Schools of Cape Fear. “We look forward to growing this mentoring program and helping our students to discover a variety of employment opportunities within AT&T, as well as the educational pathways needed in order for them to realize success.”

CIS brings a unique model of integrated student services to dropout-prevention efforts. CIS positions a dedicated staff member, a school-based Site Coordinator, to work with school staff to identify students at risk of falling behind or not graduating, to assess a student’s individual needs and to establish relationships with local businesses, social service agencies, health care providers and parent and volunteer organizations to harness needed resources. By both providing direct services and linking students to existing community resources, CIS Site Coordinators form a safety net of support for students in need.

With the mission to empower students to stay in school and achieve in life, CIS serves 1.2 million students nationwide and 1,153 across New Hanover and Pender Counties.