The Texarkana Independent School District, Texarkana College and Texas A&M University-Texarkana have developed a long-term partnership to provide students and families with tools for higher education.
The group’s first event, “College: The Latino Dream,” is set for Saturday, Sept. 24, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the University Center on the A&M-Texarkana campus, 7101 University Ave., Texarkana, Texas.
The event will include bilingual breakout sessions on financial literacy, career exploration and college readiness. Parents and students will learn about federal and state benefits, grants and scholarships, the value of college education, and programs available at Texarkana College and A&M-Texarkana.
“Parents and students will be provided with Texarkana College dual credit requirements, course offerings and programs of study,” said Dr. Lori Rochelle, Director of Advising and Registration at Texarkana College. A Texarkana College representative also will conduct a financial aid presentation.
“Our primary vision is to connect Latino students and their families with educational opportunities designed to meet their needs,” said Dr. Luz Mary Rincon, Professor of Bilingual/ESL Education and Spanish Director of the Intensive English Program at A&M-Texarkana. “A&M-Texarkana will help focus on college aspiration and financial assistance information.”
Mindy Basurto, Coordinator of Multilingual Education for the Texarkana Independent School District, said the event also marks the beginning of the district’s literacy program.
“TISD will launch a Latino Family Literacy Program in the fall for students and parents,” Basurto said. “The fall session will cover ‘Graciela’s Dream,’ which details the journey of a Latino student who struggles to convince her parents to support her in her efforts to attend college.”
The Latino Family Literacy Program will include smaller, more intimate sessions with groups of parents and visits from school administrators, academic advisors, college recruiters, college students and college financial aid personnel, who will assist students and parents in completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
Latino Family Literacy Program groups will travel as a team to participate in Texas High School events such as College Day, with support from bilingual personnel to make information accessible to parents who may not be fluent in English.
“Texarkana College and A&M Texarkana are eager to work with Texarkana ISD to reach out to their parents and students, and other families and students in the community,” said Drs. Rochelle and Rincon.
The event is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Mindy Basurto at (903) 276-5517 or Dr. Luz Mary Rincon at (903) 276-5929.