Tyana Lange, director of enrollment management, invites interested community members to join the effort and learn more about the Coalition at a breakfast meeting on Wednesday, June 13, 8 a.m., at Inventrek, 700 E. Firmin St.
"Children in the community need to grow up with the expectation they will continue their educations after high school," Lange said. "We want to make sure families understand that the jobs their children want will require some kind of post-secondary education. It is important for families to understand college is attainable, and there are ways to pay for it."
IU Kokomo's involvement in this Coalition fits with Chancellor Michael Harris' campus themes of Academic Excellence and Student Success, Regional Transformation, and Building Relationships and Making Friends.
The Coalition seeks community support to reach families, asking schools, faith-based organizations, youth service groups, service clubs, business owners, government agencies and libraries to participate.
"We just need them to help in any way they can, to educate our community in how college is available here," she said. "In an ideal world, when a high school student goes to the grocery store, the cashier would ask him if he's filled out his financial aid form yet. That's the kind of support this community needs."
Lange said filling out the financial aid form is the first step in making college a reality for some students, but many in Howard County don't take that crucial step.
"Nearly 75 percent of IU Kokomo students receive some form of financial aid, which shows there is money out there to make post-secondary education possible," she said. "If you don't apply for it, you can't get it. We have to help people understand they need to apply, and help them through the process.
"We have opportunities other counties really want," she said. "Everybody, regardless of their background, can do some kind of post-secondary experience."
For more information or to join, go to www.learnmoreindiana.org/csc, or contact Lange at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Indiana University Kokomo serves north central Indiana.