The middle school and high school years are a very pivotal and exciting time in a young person’s life. The experiences during this coming-of-age period allow students to discover their passions, start thinking about their life goals, and explore the post-secondary pathways required to achieve them.
Like educators across the country, Education Advisors running our in-school programs have also had to rethink how to keep serving students while at-home. ASA’s GEAR UP, Talent Search and Upward Bound programs are finding new ways to ensure that students are staying connected to resources, support and guidance. Whether by email, phone call, text, social media or video conference, ASA’s team is supporting students who may otherwise feel cut-off from the activities and life events they had planned for the spring.
The teams have used a wide range of tactics to keep students engaged and connected. They’ve developed a weekly College and Career Readiness newsletter that features a student spotlight, scholarship opportunities and more. They’ve mailed care packages to families directly affected by COVID-19. They’re helping students stay focused on their goals with vision board projects and journal writing.
Just as importantly, the advisors are focusing on their students’ social and emotional needs, planning fun activities to brighten their days and provide ways to connect face-to-face, even if it’s through a screen. These include weekly Zoom meetings, Friday Netflix watch parties, and Tik Tok video challenges. Our dedicated teams are striking the delicate balance between keeping students’ spirits and engagement high, while also providing the advising support they need in these challenging and uncertain times.
While life today may feel like it has hit the pause button, planning for the future can give students hope for a brighter tomorrow. Our education advisors are ensuring that students are still getting the guidance, resources, and information they need to find their path and plan for their future. All with smiles on their faces. To learn more about ASA’s in-school programs, visit: https://www.asa.org/planning/