Mission: Our mission is to break the cycle of poverty by preparing underserved students to be the first in their families to go to college through after school programs that begin in third grade.
Results: Results we are committed to achieve: At least 88% of college enrolled students are retained in college toward a degree,100% of high school seniors apply to multiple post-secondary institutions, 100% of program completers enroll in a post-secondary institution, 100% of program completers receive scholarships, 100% of program completers graduate from high school meeting the "a-g" requirements for admission eligibility to the UC and CSU system, 100% of high school seniors complete FAFSA by the deadline, and 100% of students are on track for high school. With the support of our program, our students have access to resources that make them knowledgeable and financially equipped for college.
Target demographics: 100% of the students BLCI serves will be of the first in their families to attend college, and most will be the first in their families to graduate from high school.
Direct beneficiaries per year: 581
Geographic areas served: San Diego
Programs: In the Elementary School Program (3rd-5th grade) we focus on setting the foundation for future success. We provide enrichment activities for students that build the reading, writing, critical thinking, and social skills necessary for continued academic success. Through on-site presentations and field trips to local universities, students also learn how others from similar backgrounds have made the dream of higher education a reality, and begin to envision college as an achievable goal.
In the Middle School Program (6th-8th grade) we focus on positive identity development, as our students often experience negative influences in their communities that may compete with a college-going culture. Community service, roles models, leadership, and “Active Dreaming” concepts are emphasized. Assistance is offered daily to support students in their academic course work, with subject-specific tutors available for additional one-on-one assistance. Steps to Success Workshops focus on important skills such as time management, essay writing, and test preparation.
In the High School Program, (9th- first semester of 11th grade) the focus shifts to skill development, college preparatory classes, and the college application process. We call high school “The Audition for College.” We make sure students are taking the right courses, have a strong GPA, improve their standardized test scores and are involved in extracurricular activities. Steps to Success Workshops continue to strengthen academic and personal skills, with special focus on financial literacy, standardized testing, and the value of community service and community-based work. Eleventh grade students spend their Spring Break touring a variety of college campuses in the San Francisco Bay Area.
The College Success Program (second semester of 11th grade - college completion) matches the student to the right college, connects them to financial aid, and supports them until they graduate from college. Students benefit from individualized college advising services, a pre-college orientation, and the opportunity to compete for a $5,000 scholarship renewable up to four years designed to enable students to attend the university that best allows them to meet their higher education goals and to prepare for life after college graduation through mentorship, internship, and community service requirements.
Our Parent Advocacy Program provides ongoing workshops and regular meetings with BLCI program staff, which help to educate parents on topics including parental rights, community resources, and college preparation. Some parent workshops are designed to create an environment at home that is conducive to their children enrolling and succeeding in college (e.g. transformational communication, financial literacy, etc.). BLCI helps parents complete charter and private school applications and utilize such programs as School Choice and VEEP, which give students the option to transfer from low-performing schools to higher-performing schools within the district. Parents are required to invest 30 hours a year in BLCI by volunteering, participating in workshops, or going back to school themselves.
Through our Partnerships Program we partner with different nonprofits, for-profits, colleges and universities, and other institutions to provide a wide array of opportunities that expand our students’ horizons and empower them to dream big dreams.