Monday, April 25, 2011

Completing a dream

TCC soon-to-be grad Greg, left, with his mentor Michael at today's party.
 This afternoon I had the pleasure of meeting three TCC students who are graduating in a little more than a week. Their accomplishments were celebrated today at a pre-graduation party at the TCC Northeast Campus. And, nothing says "graduation party" more than a yummy cake decorated with mini diplomas and mini graduation hats.

The celebration honored the three grads, of course, but it had a deeper message: Follow your dreams. All of the grads are members of the African American Male Success Team at TCC, which is a component of TCC's Achieving the Dream initiative.

Achieving the Dream is all about getting more students to complete certificates and degrees, especially minorities and first-generation college students. And through the African American Male group, African American male faculty and staff are mentoring African American male students to do just that.

The mentors and mentees are forming bonds by sharing common ground and the same belief: More African American males must complete degrees. This mutual understanding is motivating everyone to work together to make a change.

While TCC's mentor/mentee group is fairly new, it is clear that it is making a difference. This graduation party was filled with around 30 young African American men who clapped and cheered on their graduating friends, knowing their turn is coming.

You can't help but be inspired by that.

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