Cobb Education Consortium Targets Minority Males with Program
The Cobb Education Consortium, a group of Cobb County educational institutions, recently held a workshop at Georgia Highlands College/Marietta targeted to male minority students. Participants discussed the challenges of access and college completion necessary for success among this target demographic, which has seen severely declining numbers at the college level. Along with the CEC and Georgia Highlands representatives, Regina Vinson, a representative of the Georgia Student Finance Commission, and Deatra Riley, a representative of CredAbility, a nonprofit credit counseling and education company, gave lectures on financial management. Financial challenges are most often cited as the reason for minority students not attending college.
The meeting was held primarily for members of Brother to Brother, an organization devoted to accomplishing educational goals while bettering the lives of minority males in the community. B2B is GHC’s answer to the University System of Georgia’s African American Male Initiative, a program founded in 2002 to increase recruitment and graduation and decrease the number of college drop-outs among this at-risk population. The college’s Marietta Site Director Kirk Nooks and Humanities Division Chair Jon Hershey are also advisors for the program, which according to its mission statement, encourages “positive solutions to the educational, cultural, social, spiritual and intellectual needs of African-American and Latino male college students at GHC.”
Twenty-four members of B2B attended the meeting. Marquez Dennis, a member since 2009, said, “The younger we get them, the more dreams we salvage.” Marquez also said B2B is helping him become a better man, because of the opportunity to mentor elementary and junior high-school kids in a poverty stricken area in Cobb County.
The Cobb Education Consortium focuses on improving education within its member institutions, which include The Cobb County School District, Southern Polytechnic State University, Kennesaw State University, Georgia Highlands College, Marietta City Schools and Chattahoochee Technical College.
Georgia Highlands College is a two-year institution of the University System of Georgia, serving more than 5,200 student at six sites in Rome, Cartersville, Marietta, Dallas and Douglasville.