Getting geared up for college

This article was originally published in The Notebook. In August 2020, The Notebook became Chalkbeat Philadelphia.

Across the city, it’s a big week for helping Philadelphia students get to college:

  • Wednesday morning, Benjamin Franklin High School hosted "College Day," featuring Lincoln University’s marching band and workshops for students on everything from the SAT to the college admissions process. "We want to make this a yearly focus at Ben Franklin," said Hope Worthy, the school’s college counselor.
  • U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan has also teamed up with U.S. Rep. Chaka Fattah, D-Philadelphia, to declare this week "GEAR-UP week." The goal is to spotlight the program’s continuing efforts to help young people get to college. Fattah was instrumental in the program’s founding in 1999. You can check out both Fattah and Duncan talking about GEAR-UP on YouTube.
  • Philadelphia Futures has released its 22nd Step Up to College guide, a free resource for local students and their families. The guide "affirms that there are many options available to our students as they pursue advanced education," said Joan T. McDonald, senior vice president of enrollment management at Drexel University, which sponsors the publication. "The takeaway message is that college is possible and accessible for all of Philadelphia’s students." To get a paper copy of the guide, you can call 215-790-1666.
  • Thursday is also the last day to vote for the Notebook in Open Data Philly’s first Open Data Race. We’re hoping to gain increased access to detailed statistics on where Philly students go to college, and we’re neck-in-neck for the lead. Take three minutes and lend us a hand!

And, of course, for a comprehensive look at college-going in Philadelphia, check out our Summer 2011 issue on going to college.