2008 Fulbright Recipients
When we have children, our expectations for ourselves are to provide the best for our little ones. The question is what is the best? I had a disagreement with my Pastor one day we were talking about education. He was trying to convince me that children need to have more of an entrpenuarial spirit as opposed to a college education. I argued they needed both. The key word for me was possibilities. I thought I would dream for my children until they could dream for themselves. Their Dad and I came from very humble means and we knew we wanted much more for them, this is what we did.
Instill in your child at a very early age they are expected to go to college. Teach them to love reading, that it’s an adventure every time they open a book.
Follow through and make sure child is doing his/her best in school. Have them read a chapter ahead in all their main subjects. Science, English, Math, and Social Studies.
Invest in a tutor if you need to, remember you are investing in your child’s future. Help your student maintain a high grade average. Be on top of things and know what is going on with your student at all times.
Always ask your student where they see themselves in five years. It will change every year, but at least you have them thinking about it.
Start having your student take the PSAT’s in early middle school, 7th-8th grades, and each year after. Some school systems do this automatically, if not you may have to investigate an outside source and get your student signed up.
Have your child involved in student government, or any community activities such as student tutorial or community involvement.
Research and apply for Magnet School Programs, Charter Programs, High Achiever Programs in your area. Most school systems offer these programs based on your child’s county-state test scores, grades, and achievements. Most are also state funded, so they are free.
Visit area colleges in the 9th and 10th grades with your student and talk about what your students interests are. Have your student start documenting his/her accomplishments and his/her goals.
Have your student challenge themselves to the hardest programs at school. Take advanced classes or AP classes in all core subjects.
Encourage student to participate in exchange programs. Ideally you want to send your student to a country that speaks the language they are studying. My son did his 10th grade year in Germany. He now speaks fluent German.
Start narrowing down colleges. Investigate scholarships and loan programs to assist your student. Take the SAT’s.
Write letters to the school choices and request a personal tour (this is at your own expense)
If you have a high achieving student they may pay for your child’s expenses .
Sign up for website scholarship services and research grants. Don’t worry your child has not made up mind on major. They have the first two years of college to decide.
Also, local mega churches, and restaurants have scholarship programs like McDonald’s or Burger King. Some may only be a few hundred dollars but they add up nicely.
Submit your applications for college. Ideally your child should rank in the top 10% of his/her class.
Apply for scholarships and grants.
I’m proud to say my son LaSean was accepted to Harvard, Georgetown, Princeton, and American University. He chose Princeton for his graduate studies.
You can read about him at: http://www.morehouse.edu/news/archives/001340.html
I also have a daughter that’s a senior in college who is double majoring in Mass Communcations and Theatre.
Written by drenee
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