Family Empowerment InitiativeBeyond opportunities for families to learn about the college education system, college readiness, and college enrollment processes, Region One GEAR UP creates leaders in the community through an innovative and state recognized parent to parent training model. Parents receive training to become education advocates and play active roles in:
a) providing presentations regarding effective roles for families in education and about the instrumental knowledge needed to navigate the college process,
b) identifying needs/interests of fellow parents,c) recruiting parents for GEAR UP activities, and
Lessons will focus on the "TAP" college Testing requirements, the Admissions process, and Paying for college (financial aid opportunities).Family information nights will be implemented at each partner school district. Example of topics will include:
Career Pathways (STEM Focus) Financial Literacy (Budgeting) Leadership Development College Entrance Requirements College Financing Options Community Service and Summer OpportunitiesFamilies are also encouraged to attend regional GEAR UP events with their children as well as scheduled college/university visits. Regional events include some of the following opportunities for families to attend:· Annual Conferences: HESTEC Latina Day, FESTIBA, Financial Literacy Summit, College for All Conferences, Family Empowerment Outreach Trainings, T.I.E.S. Conferences
· GEAR UP state and national conferences
In addition, ongoing efforts will be made by Region One, with partners Wells Fargo, IBC Banks and other banks in the Deep South Texas Financial Literacy Coalition to provide training and information on the basics of financial literacy. The purpose of this training will be to assist participating parents in financial planning for college for their children. Training and information will be provided in a bilingual (English/Spanish) format and will focus on the purpose of college savings accounts; college costs and needs based on FAFSA information, deposits, withdrawals and management of accounts, and descriptions of simple and compound interest. Training will also include sessions on understanding and establishing credit, the significance of good credit history, and managing credit. Materials used in this effort include materials provided by the federal government and by private industry.
Audience:GEAR UP Families