P20 CONNECTS Pilot Partnerships

Frederick Community College (FCC), in partnership with Frederick County Public Schools (FCPS), launched their P20 CONNECTS partnership with a Civic Engagement Summit that focused on systemic connections. The twenty FCC and FCPS administrators and educators in attendance supported three goals that connect college, career, and civic readiness through civic engagement and service learning across the P20 pipeline. These goals include: 1) Create a shared language of and about student civic engagement; 2) Communicate current practices and programs; and 3) Identify overlaps and opportunities for mutual enhancement.

Moving forward, key stakeholders will map P20 CONNECTS civic engagement and service-learning programming, identify programs with collaborative potential, and determine existing and needed resources. In the year to come, the initiative will focus on enhancing targeted FCC/FCPS partnership programs such as Future Link and Cyber Day, college and career readiness programming for middle school students, and Rising Entrepreneurs, an entreprenurial workshop program for high school students.

The After-School Connections program is a collaborative effort between Frostburg State University and Allegany County Public Schools to enhance the after-school program for 6th to 8th grade students that are economically disadvantaged and eligible for free and reduced meals. Operating at four middle schools throughout the county (Braddock, Mount Savage, Washington, and Westmar), the current after-school program focuses on academic enrichment in the areas of math, science, and language arts. However, with the support of the CCMA AmeriCorps VISTA Member, the After-School Connections program will also expand upon social skills and character development to strengthen children’s leadership, communication, teamwork, conflict resolution, coping, and other skills highly desired by future employers. The After-School Connections program will have college student volunteers serving as youth mentors as well as facilitators of experiential learning activities that further promote college, career, and civic readiness.

The P20 CONNECTS After-School Connections program has three main goals: 1) Collaborate on the development and implementation of learning modules focusing on college, career, and civic readiness; 2) Assist in identifying and pursuing additional funding and other resource opportunities to support enrichment activities, further development of P20 CONNECTS inititaives, and evaluations; 3) Strengthen P20 partnerships and projects in Allegany County.

  

Towson University and Baltimore County Public Schools have been mutual partners since 2002, when Mr. Hugh Kearney approached Dr. Alison McCartney about an affordable Model UN program. This partnership established the innovative TU-BCPS Model United Nations program, providing a deeper education of international relations and politics for high school students alongside valuable college/university experiences.

The program also established two civic engagement courses for Towson University students to learn about politics and international relations while also participating in service-learning and volunteering. The goals are to provide and facilitate a global learning experience, prepare students for college and their careers, increase equitable access, and increase the civic readiness and opportunities available to high school and college students. This initiative is currently assessing what the high school students have learned over the course of the entire program from the school coaching through the conference. TU and BCPS envision a more sustainable and scalable program that retains institutional memory in the high schools and focuses the mission and strategy.

  

 

 

 

The University of Maryland Eastern Shore (UMES) P20 CONNECTS Initiative has been an effective catalyst and tool to develop innovative programs and initiative to provide access to higher education for local youth, engaging UMES students in community service/outreach, and fostering relationships with local business in order to provide access and opportunity for residents in the surrounding community.

UMES students have participated in several projects that have had a direct physical impact on the surrounding community such as building wheel chair ramps for the economically challenged elderly and their families. Additionally, multiple food distributions and health lifestyle programs have been designed via a garden built by UMES students, the Community Foundation of the Easter Shore, the Rotary Club of Salisbury, the MANRRS Chapter at UMES, and the CCMA AmeriCorps VISTA member have assisted in combating food insecurity and obesity, which have plagues youth and their families in the surrounding community.

One specific outreach initiative that UMES students also volunteer through the CCMA Vet Connect AmeriCorps VISTA project. The intent of this project is to connect military veterans and their families in the area to resources that combat poverty and improve their quality of life.

  

Thanks to the generous funding from the Anacostia Economic Development Corporation (AEDC), Maya Angelou School and he College of Agriculture, Urban Sustainability and Environmental Sciences (CAUSES) at the University of the District of Columbia (UDC) have partnered on a project that will train the urban agriculture and urban sustainability workforce of the future.

AEDC and UDC share a common commitment to build the capacity for economic development and improve the quality of life in the District of Columbia by creating jobs, launching businesses, and improving food access and sustainability through a thriving local food economy, which is integral to the green economy of the future.

The Maya Way of Maya Angelou Schools and its See Forever Foundation is entirely consistent with the capacity building mission of AEDC and UDC. The Maya Way is a comprehensive approach to help students in lower income communities realize their limitless potential through education that focuses on academic achievement, social and emotional support, and career and college preparation. This partnership will simultaneously prepare students for the future in green economics and sustainable development.

Since 1992, the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) has worked to promote the implementation of high quality service-learning experiences for students by providing a variety of training opportunities, resources, and technical assistance to local education agencies (LEAs).

Over the past several years, the MSDE and Campus Compact Mid-Atlantic have partnered to enhance college, career, and civic readiness by featuring P20 CONNECTS at its regular meetings with LEA service-learning contacts, including a professional development session. At that meeting, Youth in Service to America (YSA) offered a $100 mini-grant to any interested LEA to assist with the facilitation of a meeting between the LEA and local higher education contracts.

A quarter of the school systems in the state requested the YSA funding and have held, or are planning, meetings. At these meetings, LEAs and higher education contacts are exploring and planning how best to work together to create meaningful service-learning experiences. These projects will unite higher education and K12 students on focused initiatives designed to improve their communities.