City Encourages Youth to Apply to College Readiness Program

The City of Alexandria encourages youth to apply to Project Discovery, a college and career readiness program that helps low income and first-generation college students to access opportunities in higher education.

Page updated on Oct 14, 2021 at 5:49 PM

City Encourages Youth to Apply to College Readiness Program

DCHS CONNECT NEWS HIGHLIGHT 


PDA LogoThe City of Alexandria encourages youth to apply to Project Discovery, a college and career readiness program that helps low income and first-generation college students to access opportunities in higher education. Applicants can join free workshops, learn about scholarship opportunities and obtain help with academic planning.

Based at T.C. Williams High School and the Minnie Howard Ninth Grade Center, Project Discovery Alexandria (PDA) prepares and motivates an average of 130 eligible students each year to accomplish their educational dreams by providing vital knowledge on admissions and financial aid, workshops on topics such as life skills and career planning and ongoing support and encouragement. 

The program also offers college tours that are selected to include a combination of institutional sizes, Predominantly White Institutions (PWIs), Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and schools requested by students. 

According to the Council of Independent Colleges, first-generation college students face a number of obstacles in comparison to their peers. They are more likely to come from low-income families and about two-fifths of them are people of color. Many first-generation students also lack support from family members due to their unfamiliarity with the collegiate experience. Additionally, they have not been provided with the same exposure to financial information and other resources, thereby affecting their ability to make well informed decisions about the college application, selection processes and monetary aid options. 

Alexandria’s Project Discovery empowers students and helps them overcome post-secondary education challenges and achieve their goals in many ways, including:

  • Workshops: The agenda includes weekly motivational sessions delivered by community leaders and mentors, support with the college application process, financial aid services and trips to campuses.
  • Scholarship Opportunities: The initiative awards scholarships to graduating seniors and Alumni members in addition to providing guidance and access to other scholarships.
  • Academic Planning: These resources work at preparing students for academic and non-academic challenges with individualized aid tailored to their interests and needs.

View and download a printable flyer to learn more about the program’s current activities.

Join the program and start the application process here.

Since 1985, Project Discovery Alexandria has made a profound difference in the lives of the city’s youth by assisting those in the program to become the first members of their families to attend colleges, universities or technical schools. This objective was attained by inspiring students to reach higher levels of personal motivation and accomplishment with the aid of active community-based advisors and parent-involvement.

Alexandria’s program is supported by the Project Discovery Advisory Board whose mission is to raise money, encourage community involvement and foster positive public relations. The Board’s committee is made up of local professionals charged with promoting and fundraising for the project. Members come from different occupations and backgrounds and include graduates of the program too. Visit the Advisory Board’s website to learn more about the committee and its activities.

For more information about the application, contact Tashana Pulliam at tashana.pulliam@alexandriava.gov or 571.645.1942.

Learn more about available scholarships or make a tax-exempt donation to support workshops, college tours and scholarships for Project Discovery Alexandria (PDA) at Alexandriava.gov/ProjectDiscovery

   

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