Vassar Education Collaboration (VEC) Receives Two New Grants from City of Poughkeepsie and United Way
John Bradley, Executive Director of the Vassar Education Collaboration (VEC), received two new grants to support programming: a Youth-Grant from the City of Poughkeepsie to support the VEC, and a Community Fund Grant from United Way of the Dutchess-Orange Region to support the Vassar English Language Learner Outreach Program (VELLOP). VEC is utilizing these funds to support the Exploring College Summer program and the Vassar After School Tutoring (VAST) Summer Program.
Exploring College is a program for high-schoolers (rising 11th and 12th graders) and has been established for years. The goal of the Exploring College program is to give high school students an exposure to college and the college application process. Expanded summer programming for high school youth from the area supported two short mini-courses (2 days) from Vassar College faculty where students got a sense of college material and the college classroom. In addition, Vassar College student interns taught students about the college application process and aspects of college life. The students spent a night in the dorm and took a field trip to a local destination. This program gives the students some sense of their interests and capabilities as they begin the college search process.
The VAST Summer Program for middle schoolers focused on building a mock town with businesses operated by the students. Students were given budgets to run these mock businesses, and worked in small groups to run them and plan a culminating event, a town festival. Local business owners were invited to speak with the students, allowing students to connect the skills they are building to future careers.