Help ‘pave a path’ for student success in Tulsa: an open letter from our executive director
Dear partners, colleagues and friends,
Tulsa students are looking for someone who believes in them and will show up for them every single day. Many students have found that in City Year AmeriCorps members who have been coming to school in red jackets for five years now.
In eighth grade, Bibi met Ms. Tori, her first City Year AmeriCorps member in her English class. Bibi’s father had never graduated high school, her mother never went to college, her brother dropped out of college and she felt the pressure of her two younger siblings looking up to her to show them what is possible.
Tori invested her time with Bibi and helped her to trust her own ability to learn. Together, they became passionate readers, with Tori often bringing her own books to borrow when the library didn’t have them.
The next year, when Bibi went to high school, she was struggling academically. One day, she was so confused by her algebra test, she simply wrote “HELP” as the answer. With large classrooms, the teacher needed someone to support Bibi. That year Bibi met Mr. Thomas, her second City Year AmeriCorps member. He helped become a bridge between what was being taught and what Bibi needed to learn. Not only was Mr. Thomas there in her math class, but he even supported her in applying to the Tulsa Tech program for the medical assistant and phlebotomy program.
This year, Bibi will graduate high school. She has been accepted to a four-year university and this spring, when she crosses the stage, she will have a license in Phlebotomy to help her pay for college.
The investment Bibi received from City Year helped her pave a path to success. She received the help and support she needed, not just academically, but emotionally as well. She is even considering serving as a City Year AmeriCorps member after college because “high school is hard, but it becomes great and beautiful when you have City Year.”
Bibi’s path towards graduation was filled with obstacles and challenges unique to her. But, through the individualized support and interventions of City Year, she has been able to live up to her full potential. Her success is not unique, and is similar to the energy and enthusiasm we see in our students each day that are finding hope and success through the support and coaching of their City Year AmeriCorps members. Every day, over 1,000 students in Tulsa are getting individualized, one-on-one coaching in attendance, behavior, math or English to help them stay on track to graduate.
I am proud to say that every morning, across Tulsa, students see our 82 AmeriCorps members walk into their schools because of support from champions like you. If we want to build a future and give students a chance for success, we need to continue to help them overcome their individual challenges and obstacles. I invite you to donate today to show Bibi and the other students working with their City Year members your support.
City Year Tulsa Executive Director
P.S. We need your help to ensure that Tulsa’s students reach their full potential. Will you consider sponsoring the one-on-one support a student receives through City Year? Your contribution is critical to continuing to provide the individualized plan and support for each student!
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