College Summit Returns to Daemen June 23 to 26

Closing the Higher Education Enrollment Gap for Low-Income Students, College Summit Returns to Daemen June 23 to 26, 2011


Co-founded by Buffalo Resident Keith Frome, College Summit’s Support Includes President Obama, The Gates Foundation, CitiBank, Met Life, Barclay’s Bank, and Others  

June 13, 2011
Mike Andrei                                    
                  Director- College Relations              
                 (716) 839-8472                                
                  Frank Williams
                  Dean of Admissions
                  Daemen College
                  (716) 839-8225 (main#)  (direct line) 839-8485
                  Keith Frome, Ed.D.
                  Co-Founder & Chief Academic Officer
                  College Summit


           Buffalo resident Keith Frome is amazed that Bill Gates and Barack Obama have taken a personal interest in his work. Frome, former Headmaster of Elmwood Franklin School, is a regular recipient of funding from The Gates Foundation. Barack Obama gave him a portion of his Nobel Prize money. 
          The reason is College Summit. Frome, who holds an Ed.D., is co-founder of the now 17 year old organization, which has achieved notable, national success in making possible the dreams of a college education for students from low-income and distressed neighborhoods. So much so that it has caught the attention of Bill Gates and President Obama. 
           Here in Western New York, more than 200 students have completed College Summit workshops on the Daemen College campus in the past four years; over 3,000 low-income high school seniors attend College Summit workshops across the country each summer. Daemen will again collaborate with College Summit this month (June 23-26) for the fifth straight year the only four year college in upstate New York to offer College Summit workshops.      
           Students who complete College Summit workshops overcome significant, often severe obstacles, including low income, lack of home support, and crime-ridden neighborhoods. Individually, the students have solid grades and the potential for college achievement, but each lacks a critical element: the support and know-how to allow them to successfully navigate the higher education admissions process. Many College Summit students are entering their freshman, sophomore, and junior years at Daemen, carrying majors such as psychology, nursing, and business/sports management. And as a result, all have very positive views of the Buffalo region, citing the friendly people, open spaces, and personal attention they have received since arriving in Buffalo, where Frome and College Summit, together with a team of counselors, writing instructors, and other staff members from Daemen College, are giving them the opportunity for a better life.

           Our national education system needs to ensure that all young people are college-ready, said Frome, co-founder and Chief Academic Officer for College Summit. Low income students who get A’s go to college at the same rate as high-income students who get Ds. Nationally, there is a huge movement to increase college opportunities for low-income students. It is a top priority of the Obama Administration and the number one priority of The Gates Foundation. Both are strong supporters of College Summit we were thrilled that President Obama donated a portion of his Nobel Prize money to us. As a Buffalo resident, I am proud that every summer we are able to add to the success rate of this national movement at Daemen College.

           Nationally, 79 percent of low income students who go through College Summit workshops enroll and succeed in college; unassisted, fewer than 55 percent of all low-income students ever enroll in a college or university. Counselors, writing instructors, and other staff members assist students in clearly telling their life stories, and guide them through college admissions procedures processes which often serve as daunting barriers to families where no one has entered higher education.
            The Daemen/College Summit Workshops have offered support and guidance to low income high school students each of the past three summers. The organization provides 20 chaperones, additional staff, and writing coaches. Daemen’s commitment to the College Summit sessions also extends to providing housing, meals, and staff support. 

           College Summit marks a significant step forward in efforts to get more young people from low-income communities to college, noted Frank Williams, Dean of Admissions at Daemen. In offering these workshops, we are joining with College Summit in making an important difference at a crucial point in these student’s lives: increasing their opportunities for higher education.
           The students who are in the workshops have talent and academic potential not revealed by their SAT scores. Through the workshops, with the assistance of writing coaches and staff, they are able to write college application essays that reveal who they are, and where they have come from. Their life stories are often compelling.
            When President Obama received the Nobel Peace Prize for his vision of a collaborative world, he subsequently announced that he was giving a portion of his prize money to College Summit - honoring the innovative organizations collaboration with schools, policymakers, and families to provide opportunity for every student in America.
           Up until this point, our national education system has not systematically ensured that all young people who are college-ready actually make it to college, Frome noted. Our national economy demands that we tap all of the nations talent, no matter their background.

           College Summit believes that schools that address this college enrollment gap are signaling their commitment both to delivering a rigorous, high quality education to all students, and to connecting that education to a promising future in college and beyond. In Buffalo, at Daemen, we are a part of making that happen, added Williams.
           Founded in 1993 with four students at a teen center in the basement of a low-income housing project in Washington, D.C., College Summit has raised the success rate for low-income students entering higher education. College Summit workshops are centered on the belief that all students can achieve in secondary and post-secondary education.   






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