Guest Blogger: Kaneem Thornton
I’m Kaneem Thornton and I am an Aim High Reach for a Dream Scholar. This past fall, Aim High piloted a new program for students who where interested in applying to top Bay Area high schools. I am sharing my experience about this new pilot program called High School Workshop Series for others who might want to enroll next year. About 20 students enrolled in this program. These workshops included filling out high school applications, practicing interviewing skills, and preparing for the SSAT. There were workshops on applying for financial aid and other programs that assist families with the application process as well. These free workshops helped me with preparing for the SSAT. Tutorpedia and 826 Valencia held workshops on test prep. We were given test strategies on how to take the tests and administer a mock test. A test prep manual was provided to all students at the cost of $20.00 dollars per student. These workshops were held on Saturdays or sometimes on Sundays from 10:00 A.M. to 2:00 p.m. The test prep workshops were very informative and helped me discover which areas of the test I needed to improve in. Kimberly Shannon, the creator of this program, offered lots of support to the scholars. She followed up with students via emails to confirm workshops. She also helped students edit their high school applications, especially their essays. Kim was so dedicated, she even made herself available for one-on-one application help before the final deadline. For the most dedicated students, Aim High even acted as a cheerleader by calling their top two choices and letting them know their level of interest. On a personal note, this program really made the difference for me. While applying to high school, the unexpected happened to me: I broke my writing arm 2 days before I was scheduled to take the SSAT. My arm required surgery in order to heal properly and I couldn’t write for 8 weeks. This was devastating, but Kim checked in with me regularly and I was able to finish the process. She even called my mother to find out how I was doing while I was in the hospital. As a result of the program, I was accepted to all of my high schools choices. I am excited to attend Lick-Wilmerding High School next year and I could not have done it without this program. I am really thankful for Aim High, where I learned to dream big. Part of my dream is to attend a top high school that offers strong academics. I hope that in the future I can give back as a teacher for youth like myself, and come back and volunteer to help other Aim High Scholars successfully complete this program.
WOOT WOOT! GO KANEEM! Sounds like a GREAT program, I wish I could’ve gone when I was an 8th grade young’un 😀
Aim High E-News: June 2010 « Aim High – Reach for a Dream
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