Forty-five McKinley High School seniors - who have been accepted to college - are part of the 2019 Stepping Out to College program which is supported by Canton City Schools, Malone University, Fifth Third Bank and the City of Canton. "It's been great to see the program triple from last year," said Ben Carter, Director of Canton City Schools College and Career Technical Education.
Casey Quinn, McKinley Career and College Connector, explained: "We've worked with Dr. Beth Clark-Thomas, Malone's Director of Retention and Success, to create a valuable three-session introduction to college life." "We polled current freshmen about what they wished they had known before they started college and built the program based on their feedback," added Dr. Clark-Thomas.
The three 2-hour, after school sessions include:
- College Financial Literacy - presented by Fifth Third Bank -
Students learn about credits and debits, budgeting and interpreting financial aid packages. Students participate in an inventory of their interests and skills. Malone career counselors meet with them to consider options for study.
- Career and Vocation Pathways - presented by Malone University
- Life on Campus - Malone student-led small groups guide seniors on a scavenger hunt visiting the college library, dormitory, classroom, registrar and dining room.
Each participant also receives a special Malone College ID card that previews aspects of the college experience including safety on campus.
To be a part of Stepping Out to College, students were required to express interest in the program and show a letter of acceptance to college. After attending all three sessions, students will be awarded a tech package (funded through a Community Development Block Grant by the City of Canton) including a laptop and printer for college as well as a clothing allowance to be used for interviews.
Mr. Quinn has spoken with 2018 participants who confirm the value of this program and shared successes at their respective colleges. "This is a great opportunity for our students. We're grateful for the community of the City, Malone and Fifth Third."