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Early College Awareness Program at Orange Preparatory Academy -- Help Needed


On Saturday morning, January 7, 2017, the Harvard Club of New Jersey, in collaboration with the Orange School District, will be holding an Early College Awareness Program for students and parents at Orange Preparatory Academy, the District's school for 8th and 9th graders.


As many of you know, Harvard alumni clubs around the country organize these programs from time to time, focusing always on school districts with a high proportion of families that face substantial financial challenges bearing the cost of a private school college education and in which the children would be the first generation to attend college. These are not intended as Harvard recruitment initiatives. Generally speaking, the programs have three main goals:


  • Right at the outset of their high school careers, to underscore to these students and their parents how positive an impact a good college education can make in one's life;
  • To encourage students and their parents to "aim higher" by shining a spotlight on the world of highly selective, mostly private colleges and universities that have needs-blind admissions policies and meet the full financial needs of all accepted students; and
  • To convey that these schools, with their ample financial resources, are usually very focused (and able to deliver) on the objective of admitting a student body which is extremely diverse -- with all of the important opportunities for student learning, both in the classroom and outside of it, that a diverse community makes possible.


We need help in two areas as we move into the final stages of organizing this event: 


(1)     We are seeking 3-4 individual to attend the event and speak briefly about themselves, who fit (or mostly fit) the following description:

  • in their 20s or 30s
  • attended Harvard or another highly selective college
  • graduated from a public high school
  • were first generation attending college from their families
  • attended college with substantial financial aid support


(2)     We are seeking a college admissions financial aid counselor who can speak for 10-15 minutes about the financial aid process.


If you or someone you know is in a position to participate in this January 7 program in one of these capacities, please let us know by contacting HCNJ Executive Committee member Jonathan Ratner at jonathandratner@gmail.com or (908) 285-0626. 


Many Thanks.