By Brittanie Gutierrez |Staff Writer|
Give Something Back (GSB) presented a $1 million check to CSUSB in efforts to grow the college attendance rate.
The money will be geared toward helping San Bernardino children coming from households with one or both parents incarcerated or who are in the foster care system.
With this scholarship, students will be selected from ninth grade and have to take college preparatory classes, while maintaining a minimum 3.0 GPA.
If a student falls off course after committing to the program, GSB will still help them get into community college and continue their education after high school graduation.
GSB is an organization that helps children from low-income families succeed in life through mentoring programs and college scholarships.
Founder and Chairman, Robert O. Carr, handed the check to President Tomàs Morales in hopes of having more children attend and graduate from CSUSB.
“The community involvement here and the need, the tremendous need of the kids in this community, in this very good community it just makes it really an obvious place for us to come,” said Carr.
“And what we want to do […] is to prove a theory that I know is true, to demonstrate what we can do to really change the cycle of poverty and the cycle of incarceration for a large number of families, and that’s what we’re here to do,” continued Carr.
Carr’s goal is for this program is to have students graduate within four years, without debt, and have them be the example to hopefully influence the state legislature to change the way they help our youth and their education.
Morales talked about his aspirations for our campus and future students.
“We have the infrastructures, we have the partnerships to work with the Give Back Foundation to be successful, to transform lives. In particular to reach our foster youth and scale up the number of students that we can serve. To work with those young people who have a parent or parents who are incarcerated,” said Morales.
Forensic pediatrician Amy Young, M.D. spoke about how children who have incarcerated parents or children in the foster care system have a disadvantage and college becomes, “just a dream.”
“There are few things that are more damaging than losing familial ties. When you take that from a child, it changes everything. It’s nothing that they have control of,” said Dr. Young.
Unfortunately, Dr. Young is not wrong. For many of the San Bernardino youth, college is mostly just a dream.
According to Community Vital Signs Initiative, the high school graduation rate in San Bernardino City Unified was 85 percent, compared to the neighboring school district, Chaffey Joint Union High School District’s 89.8 percent.
Only 50 percent of children in the Foster Care System receive a diploma nationwide, with only 10 percent of those high school graduates attending college and 3 percent will graduate college, according to Promises 2 Kids.
GSB, which has offices in NJ and Il, strives to raise graduation rates and break the barriers some youth has to face when getting an education.