In April, BAM embarked on its Annual Spring Break College Enrichment and Cultural Experiences Tour. The trip, organized by BAM Supervisor Derrick Fleming, has been taking place for the past three years, with 2017 marking the largest group of participants to date. More than 113 young men from 13 elementary and high schools from across the city joined the week-long journey which included college and university stops in Alabama, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Kentucky. Students also visited cultural landmarks along the way and participated in BAM Brotherhood Bonding activities. The tours are deeply rooted in one of BAM’s most powerful core values, Visionary Goal-Setting, and proved to be a great success this year with several seniors receiving acceptances & scholarships to attend Livingstone College in North Carolina, and others gaining admission to Alabama State University! Fleming was quite pleased with the impact of the experience on the youth noting that “lives were changed and visions were unlocked.”
In addition, students from our STRIVE program for youth in the care of the state of Illinois also made post-secondary touring a priority. More than 80 students were given an opportunity to visit a number of institutions such as Northern Illinois University (NIU), Malcolm X College, Kennedy-King College, and Dawson Technical Institute. Youth were able to speak directly with college admission officials and current college students. They also received valuable curriculum information and learned about entrance requirements, financial aid and scholarship resources.
STRIVE Counselor Theonita Wright stated, “This was one of the best tours ever. One youth was accepted to NIU and several others completed the admissions process for junior colleges and even pre-selected their majors. These tours change lives and open doors that some of our students never thought were possible.”