This week, the University of Chicago announced the launch of UChicago Stand Together, an initiative to help increase educational access and career success for students from historically under-represented communities.
The initiative offers specialized help for students from Chicago Public Schools and area charter schools who will now navigate the college search and application process virtually, plus support to community-based organizations with expertise in assisting students on the path to college.
Expert help with the college admissions process
One component of UChicago Stand Together, an expansion of UChicago Promise, builds on the University’s work to help Chicago students gain admission to pay for, and thrive in, college.
“Our goal is to help neighborhood kids in Chicago get to college, whether that’s the University of Chicago or another school,” said Veronica Hauad, UChicago Deputy Director of Admissions, during an interview regarding the new initiative with host Cliff Kelly on WVON’s America’s Heroes Group show.
Students will have access to virtual help in choosing the right college, applying successfully, preparing academically, and accessing financial aid. Students don’t have to be committed to UChicago, as they will receive electronic access to information and application materials from more than 150 colleges around the country.
College counseling help is available during drop-in virtual office hours and one-on-one appointments with a team of UChicago College Advising Corps advisors, UChicago admissions staff, and UChicago financial aid experts. They can provide advice on everything from choosing the right college to polishing application essays to filling out financial aid forms. Students can also connect with a wide range of free academic support, including tutoring and mentoring.
Supporting organizations that support students
Over 100 community-based organizations (CBOs) around the country that work to boost educational access will receive support from UChicago Stand Together.
A new partnership with 100 Black Men of Chicago, a UChicago Community Programs Accelerator member that provides mentorship for Black youth across the city, will give thousands of students virtual access to dozens of colleges. Because 100 Black Men’s popular Fall College Fair cannot be held in person this year, UChicago is providing technology and support for a virtual fair plus a series of college readiness workshops for students and families. (Registration is open).
UChicago will also fund a full-time position for a University alumnus to support 100 Black Men staff and students over the next year. Any student who is part of the 100 Black Men mentoring program and admitted to UChicago will receive a full four-year scholarship.
“We are excited to weave 100 Black Men of Chicago into the fabric of the University of Chicago to become a more impactful catalyst of change for the South Side of Chicago,” said Carl H. Tutt, president of 100 Black Men of Chicago.
UChicago Stand Together’s wide range of programs also includes scholarships for student leaders and scholars serving groups that are under-represented in higher education; initiatives that connect UChicago students, employers, and the University; and programs that will pave the way for veterans to enroll in UChicago.