A product of inner city schools in Denver, J.B. Schramm saw many of his peers not going on to college, even though colleges were eager to enroll students from diverse socioeconomic backgrounds. Seeking to bridge this gap, J.B. become the director of a teen center in a low-income neighborhood of Washington, D.C. In 1993, he piloted College Summit with four students. In 1995 he expanded on the idea, bringing 40 students to a college campus to complete their college applications and essays and develop a college list with the guidance of college counselors. With a $13,000 grant, commitments from volunteer writing coaches and Connecticut College as the host, J.B. held the first summer workshop. Seventy-five percent of the participants were accepted to colleges. The next year, J.B. ran 3 workshops for 97 students and founded College Summit, Inc.
Impact since joining the portfolio in 2006:
- College Summit has grown to serve 50,000 students annually in 12 states by partnering with high school principals, teachers and the most influential students in lower-income communities to raise their college-going and success rates.
- College Summit produces a 20% increase in college enrollment for program participants.
- There was a 700 percent increase in the number of students served from 2006 to 2013.
- There was a 25 percent rate of improvement in college enrollment rates in College Summit partners schools having the most trouble sending students to college.
- There is an 81 percent rate of college enrollment among College Summit Peer Leaders.
- There is a 75 percent rate at which College Summit students who enroll in college persist to the sophomore year — a crucial indicator of likelihood to earn a degree.
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