By Missy Godfrey, CEO of Only Good News LLC
Higher education is a goal for most students, but given the high costs, it is a dream that many cannot afford. That’s why a growing number of cities and states are delivering free community college through “College Promise” programs. These efforts are supported by community leaders reaching across the aisle to help students start and complete their education. College Promise programs are guided by three core principals:
- College Promise is a commitment to fund a community college education for every eligible student advancing towards their degree, a certificate, and/or credits that transfer to a four-year university.
- College Promise prepares students for today’s workforce and the pursuit of the American dream without the burden of unmanageable college debt.
- College Promise is a commitment to make the first two years of community college – at a minimum – as universal, free, and accessible as public high school has been in the 20th Century.
I’m proud to work for HooplaHa – Only Good News (OGN), where we recently highlighted the College Promise movement in a video that shares how free community college changed one student’s life for the better. Virginia Hughes, from Maryville, Tennessee, is just one of thousands of students benefiting from that state’s free community college program. With the help of the Tennessee Promise, Virginia became the first in her family to attend college when she enrolled at Pellissippi State Community College. With the financial and personal support of Tennessee Promise and her mentor Laura Harill, Virginia transferred to the University of Tennessee. Like many students in this program, Virginia is now paying it forward by mentoring a young student enrolled in the Tennessee Promise.
At HooplaHa – Only Good News, we’re proud to shine a spotlight on individuals and organizations that are impacting our communities and building a better future. We believe that positive news uplifts, inspires and compels others to take action. That’s why we were drawn to highlight a program like the Tennessee Promise, which shows that when communities invest in their hardworking students through free tuition, anything is possible.
Stories like Virginia’s are powerful and so is yours. That’s why our friends at the College Promise Campaign have launched a video competition for high school seniors, community college students and alumni. Just shoot a short video of your personal story and share why you support free community college. You can win up to $2,000 in scholarships and prizes. Learn more here and get your entry in by October 15th. Good luck!