Promote 360 Hosts Chicago 8th Graders for Campus Visit

Promote 360 Hosts Chicago 8th Graders for Campus Visit

Promote 360 students panelSESP’s student organization, Promote 360, introduced 28 Chicago eighth graders to college during a Northwestern campus visit on March 10. The eighth graders are from Marcus Garvey School, a public school on the South Side of Chicago.

“We are excited to host the students from the Marcus Garvey School,” said Imani Wilson, president of Promote 360. “Our goal in hosting this event is to expose them to a college campus and college life. There are so many students who may not be meeting their full potential merely due to the fact that they don't know what opportunities are available to them.”

Promote 360 planned a full day of activities to inform and inspire the students about college. First, the group toured Northwestern’s Multicultural Center and Black House, as well as other highlights of the campus. Then before lunch at Sargent Hall, Promote 360 presented a discussion with Northwestern undergraduates talking about college life.

“In our conversations with these students, we hope to have real conversations about what it's like to apply to college, to secure financial aid, and to be a college student so that they can better envision themselves at a university in just a few years. Our involvement in this event demonstrates how dedicated our group is to encouraging young students to set goals for themselves, to be driven, and to dream big,” Wilson explained. 

In addition to this event, Promote 360 has partnered in other activities this year as part of its mission to enhance the well-being of minority and underrepresented students. For example, the group partnered with Evanston Township High School for several tutoring sessions at the school’s "WildKit Academy" on Saturday mornings.

Promote 360 is also starting a new initiative for building community among SESP undergraduates that focuses on “talking about issues that matter to us,” according to Wilson. The series, called "Grub ‘n’ SESP Love," consists of community meetings for reflecting on topics of importance to students and offers snacks in the Student Affairs Office. Upcoming dates are posted on the SESP events calendar, and all undergraduates are encouraged to attend. Another community building event hosted by Promote 360 on a regular basis is the annual all-SESP welcome-back social in September.

The March 10 event was co-sponsored by SESP and the Office of STEM Education Partnerships.

Brian Harris, the Gear Up CPS College and Career Coach at Marcus Garvey School, noted, "My overall goal was to expose my students to an 'elite' institution like Northwestern through a more accessible lens. ... I believe the students enjoyed the experience, but the benefits will likely be more apparent later on in high school as opposed to now (as eighth graders). The students and staff we interacted with reinforced a lot of what we tell them about college."

By Marilyn Sherman
Last Modified: 3/15/16