In 2017, we started an alumni program for former students in the Communities In Schools (CIS) program. When an at-risk youth living in poverty graduate from high school, they also graduate from CIS programming. After graduating high school, these vulnerable young people don’t suddenly have all the answers, have a safety net, and have a plan for success. The CIS Alumni Group is a program to provide additional support post-graduation. Being a first-generation college student is one of the most often cited predictors of higher education failure. Data from the Pell Institute in 2011 demonstrates that "54% of first generation students were financially on their own, while only 27% of non-first generation students had full financial responsibility for themselves." National Center for Education Statistics data shows that only 11 percent of low-income, first-generation students graduated within six years of starting. And less than one-quarter of first-generation students overall earn their way to a bachelor’s degree, compared to 68 percent of their non-first-gen peers. The CIS Alumni Network is meant to give young people who grew up in poverty and under challenging circumstances the extra support system they need to achieve in life.
Member Duties : The VISTA member will serve to help young people who grew up in poverty and received services from CIS be successful in college and career by providing additional supports after graduation through an alumni program. The VISTA will assess the needs of graduating high school students and identify what resources are available to them by interviewing current students, recent graduates, and CIS staff. Based on these findings, the VISTA will develop a resource data base matching high school graduates with current community resources. Through this work, the VISTA will develop partnerships with community organizations who support at-risk youth and build awareness through a multi-media communications plan.
Childcare assistance if eligible, Education award upon successful completion of service, Health coverage, Non-competitive eligibility (federal jobs), Relocation allowance (if applicable), Stipend, Student loan forbearance, Training
Permits attendance at school during off hours
Subject to criminal background check