Join Hundreds Helping Students Identify and Network with Good-Fit Colleges

September 19, 2017

By Wendy Blackmore, Tennessee College Access & Success Network (TCASN)

As members of the college access community, we are all familiar with the challenges that first-generation and lower-income students face in the college admissions process. But do we have the right tools to help them overcome those obstacles?

The majority of college access efforts rely on professionals' time and networks. We are familiar with certain institutions and often send students to colleges we know, but that doesn’t always mean they are a good fit. What do we do when a student is interested in a school that is outside of our organization’s network? It’s difficult to evaluate schools to make sure they are always a good academic, financial and social fit for our students. How do we know who to talk to in the admissions office to answer our questions?

Navigating the college admissions process is difficult and that’s why college access professionals from 225+ community based organizations and high schools across the country have signed up for The TalentED Project, a free digital tool that builds relationships between high school counselors or college access professionals and admissions recruiters to match first-generation, lower-income college-goers with select four-year colleges. Through these connections, TalentED aims to ensure that the students realize the higher education options that are available to them.

(click here for an interactive map of TalentED Project users) 

Take Christina Fontenot, Director of College Counseling at Cohen College Prep in New Orleans, who connected with an admissions recruiter from Earlham College and arranged a visit to her school. Her students then gained the opportunity to develop a personal connection with an out-of-state admissions recruiter at an institution they might not have previously considered. Similar to Christina’s experience, over 300 connections between college access professionals and admissions recruiters have formed through TalentED. The site makes it simple and easy to connect with admissions recruiters from schools where students are more likely to complete their degree.

And it’s working: College access professionals are using the tool’s selection criteria and badge system to identify the colleges where first-generation and lower-income students are most likely to be successful. Most importantly, these professionals are finding that The TalentED Project has allowed them to make new connections with over 150 admissions recruiters at a growing list of nearly 100 colleges, including Butler, Swarthmore, Ferris State and Texas Tech. Through expanded lines of communication between college access programs and higher education institutions, The TalentED Project has increased the opportunities available to students!

Join our community of professionals who are expanding their students' horizons and increasing their chances of attending good-fit colleges. Sign up for a free The TalentED Project account today. After completing your profile, use the bulk upload tool to invite your students and start the conversation about a good college fit.

(click here to view the video)

Built in partnership by NCAN members UBS and TCASN, and Discovery EducationThe TalentED Project establishes an online community of college access and admissions professionals that introduces students to schools that increase their likelihood of graduation and future success.

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