Colleges and universities come in all sizes and types, and any student planning to attend was able to fully explore their options. On Tuesday, March 17, many students learned first hand how true this sentiment echoed from the daily barrage of reminders. The Education Center was transformed into a sea of competing school colors as over 16 colleges, universities, and technical schools and armed forces representatives gathered for this inaugural event. Transition Coordinator, Delbert Prillerman coordinated the fair for CIS of Philadelphia students with specific criteria in mind. “Our students participate in college visits, area fairs and virtual tours throughout the year, however, they are often disappointed because the events are so well attended that they don’t feel that they had enough time to speak with representatives, gather enough pertinent information or do enough to stand out from the crowd.” Knowing this, Mr. Prillerman designed the day to resemble a maze requiring the students to navigate through the building, collecting information from admissions representatives, investigating school and career options.
The participating schools provided a detailed cross-section of affordable higher education options available to students, specifically across the state of Pennsylvania.
Over 150 students from all grade levels; freshman, sophomores, juniors and seniors were escorted through the Post Secondary Maze in small groups which allowed for individualized attention. Aundrea Phillips, a 12th grade student scheduled for June 2016 graduation was elated when she received an on the spot acceptance to Harcum College. “I was so excited, I never really thought I would be able to attend college. Mr. Prillerman even talked with me about scholarship opportunities I did not know were available. Yay, me, I am going to be a freshman in college.”
Another student, Tahja Moody said, “This is so cool, I am using the treasure hunt game so I know what questions to ask the representatives. It really helps me because I get nervous when I am in front of people I don’t know, I don’t want to sound like I don’t know anything.” Mr. Prillerman work together with Instructional Administrator Starr Dixon to designed the “Treasure Hunt” worksheet after seeing this reoccurring theme when he sponsored campus and fair visits earlier in the year. “I would practice and help students prep in my class before attending the visit so they were prepared, however, it seems like they lost their confidence when we arrived so they were not able to make the most out of the experience. I wanted to make certain this time was a different experience for our students and allowed non-seniors an opportunity to maximize this experience. I am beyond pleased with the results.”
The event filled the entire CIS Education Center with positive energy, which permeated throughout the remainder of the week; the following day when students returned to school, the buzz was all about the experiences at the Maze.
Kudos to our Post-Secondary Partners: