Scholars Program, Student Spotlight

Meet Lisbeth, a 12th Grade Scholar

Lisbeth Moreno.jpgLisbeth is a senior at Woodrow Wilson High School, and has been in the FLOC Scholars program since the beginning of her junior year.
This fall she will be a freshman at George Mason University, her top choice, where she plans to major in Government and International Politics.

Each FLOC senior is matched with a postsecondary coach who guides them through the college application process. Lisbeth and her coach Jazmin are certainly a great match! “I think FLOC did a great job pairing us,” Lisbeth said smiling. “Jazmin and I have similar interests and backgrounds; she’s also Latina and came to FLOC as a student, she studied International Affairs at Tufts, and we laugh at the same things.” Lisbeth also said that she has appreciated how Jazmin encouraged her to stay on top of her college and scholarship applications this year.

Lisbeth has many wonderful FLOC memories. The SAT prep that FLOC provided during her 11th grade year helped to increase her scores in all three sections—math, reading, and writing. “I learned new vocabulary, of course, but I also learned how to think through test answers when I came across words or phrases I was unfamiliar with,” she said. During her junior year of high school, Lisbeth went on a spring break college tour with FLOC. “We visited UNC Greensboro, Radford, and VCU, which were three of the schools I applied to,” she recollected. The college tour not only proved helpful in the college decision process itself, but also provided Lisbeth with an opportunity to make lasting friendships with other FLOC students.

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With graduation just around the corner, Lisbeth is excited for college and all of the new opportunities that come with it.

(Samantha Bailey is the Bilingual Recruitment and Outreach Coordinator at FLOC.)

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Scholars Program, Volunteer Spotlight

Meet Gerald

Gerald Mason 2Gerald Mason currently serves as a Postsecondary Coach in the Scholars program. In this role, he is matched with a 12th grade Scholar to provide individual support on his journey to post-secondary education. Gerald first heard about FLOC through his girlfriend, who thought it would be appropriate that he consider FLOC, given his interest in mentoring and education. He’s always had a desire to serve his community but he recognized that having a passion for giving was not sufficient. He knew it was time for his actions to better mirror his values.

Gerald has been a volunteer since the summer of 2014. He started as a Tutor in the Neighborhood Tutoring Program. This school year, Gerald is working with a student named Aldair, who he is helping to complete scholarship applications. Aldar is the epitome of a modern day gentlemen. He’s smart, compassionate, and family-centered. Gerald finds Aldair’s love for science and truth discovery refreshing and is impressed by his indomitable will.

2015-03-18 19.01.00Gerald’s best experience thus far at FLOC occurred on 3/10/15. That was the day he found out Aldair got into his number one school, Catholic University. Aldair will the first person in his family to go to college. Gerald and Aldair worked hard on improving his SAT score to boost the strength of his candidacy. He made everyone proud by increasing his score by 70 points. His acceptance into Catholic justifies his hard work and further legitimizes FLOC’s efforts.

Besides Aldair’s acceptance into Catholic, every day helping him to secure his future is a legitimate contender for Gerald’s “favorite moment” at FLOC. Gerald and Aldair were both applying to schools this school year which made their bond tighter. They had to be accountable to each other. His acceptance into several schools and Gerald’s acceptance into Cornell University for graduate school makes their journey together this year much more memorable!

A fun fact about Gerald is that his mother was a Director at FLOC in the 1980s, which he discovered after he started volunteering.

(Vanessa Hanible is the Recrruitment and Outreach Associate at FLOC.)

Scholars Program

Scholars Program Pilots New SAT Prep Model

Preparing for the SAT exam is a daunting process for many students. It requires a lot of practice and focused attention. This year the Scholars Program is excited to pilot a new SAT prep model that provides our 11th grade students with targeted reading and math instruction.

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With the help of our partner organization, Prep Matters, we were able to train six volunteers to tutor small groups of students for twelve weeks. As opposed to past years where students received both reading and math prep in one night, this year students will work on one subject for six weeks and then rotate, to ensure quality instruction of each subject.  And with the expanded number of volunteers working in SAT prep, students are able to work in smaller groups and receive more personalized instruction.

Photo Oct 23, 1 02 40 PMAlthough still in its first few weeks, student have mastered new concepts such as sentence completion and number theory as a result of our volunteer SAT Coaches and this new, more individualized attention.  We look forward to seeing continued growth as the weeks continue!

(Kimberly Davis is the College Access Coordinator for the FLOC Scholars Program.)