Children in foster care often face substantial hurdles long before they’re old enough to apply to college. And the obstacles don’t disappear for the students who make it to campus. In this three-part series, The Southern Education Desk explores the journey from foster care through college in the South.
Foster Care To College Series
Whether it’s summer, spring, or fall term, some young people have trouble adjusting to campus life. College students coming from foster care face extra hurdles: 70 percent want to get a degree, but roughly three percent graduate by age 25. For the third and final part of our series “From Foster Care To College: Extra Help For Extra Hurdles,” reporter Dan Carsen recently went to the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa to learn about a new program that’s trying to better the odds.
Many recent high school graduates are packing away caps and gowns and getting ready for college. But new research shows most kids who grow up in foster care don’t attend college – and those who do are less likely to graduate. In our From Foster Care to College series, Part One, we met Briyana Dunn, who was attending college through a Tennessee Department of Children’s Services program. Southern Education Desk reporter Christine Jessel catches up with Dunn to see how she’s doing nearly a year after starting college.
When foster care kids turn 18, in many states, they’re basically on their own. They have to find a job – figure out how to get there – pay rent, groceries, utilities and insurance … all the things that come with adult life. And these kids are often unprepared. Another thing they’re not ready for: College. Some states have special programs to support foster care kids who want to go to college. In the first part of our series “From Foster Care To College,” Southern Education Desk reporter Christine Jessel introduces us to a young woman who got a state scholarship to attend college last fall.