Founded in 2015, the Conference connects underrepresented and underserved public high school students from Metro-Atlanta with supportive college options. Workshops are led by college representatives to help students and families with various aspects of the college search, college application and financial aid processes.
College AIM meetings begin in 9th grade. We meet with every student in the school building, beginning with group workshops for underclassmen and moving into individual counseling sessions for juniors and seniors. College AIM staff works to guide students to colleges with strong financial, academic and social support services to ensure a successful path through college graduation. Parents and family members are invited to attend each session.
COLLEGE & FINANCIAL AID COUNSELING
As freshmen, all students participate in two group workshops:
1) Building Your GPA - Students learn the role that grades play in the admissions process and are empowered to calculate and raise their own GPAs.
2) Talking the Talk - Students learn the language of college applications and financial aid, the support resources that exist and how to conduct college research. Throughout, they learn the foundations that will allow them to network with admissions professionals.
As sophomores, students participate in two more group workshops:
1) Walking the Walk - Students begin to understand the elements that go into admissions decisions and consider how they can leverage their personal strengths to develop a strong profile.
2) It's in Our Hands- Students serve as the admissions team and make decisions about applicants by evaluating essays, recommendations and other application components. Ultimately, students use this insider knowledge to develop their own application timelines.
As Juniors, students meet twice with College AIM staff for individual counseling:
1) Building YOUR Profile - Students complete college-fit assessments to determine what type of college we should be searching for. We consider degree type, size, location, supports and much more!
2) Building YOUR List- Using a list of 140 colleges that are financially, academically and socially supportive of our students, we find 8-10 schools that match each student's profile. For each college, students create a list of concrete next steps to complete.
All seniors meet with College AIM staff four times throughout the school year. The meetings mirror the timeline of the application, financial aid and decision making processes. Throughout students are given personalized support around developing an application plan, essay writing, the nuts and bolts of applying, submitting FAFSA, applying for additional scholarships and evaluating financial aid awards. Often, parents attend these senior meetings so that they can be strong allies through the process.