It is with great pleasure and excitement that I step into the role as chairman of the board of DC-CAP – District of Columbia College Access Program – following Don Graham, a true pillar in philanthropy and a champion for D.C. students. During the past 15 years Don has taken DC-CAP from an idea to an incredibly successful program that has changed the lives of thousands of D.C. students and families. He and his team are helping D.C. high school students attend college when most never felt that was possible either academically or financially, and they stay connected with students throughout their college years.
It is a true honor to succeed Don, who has been a dear friend and confidant for many years, and I pledge to do my best to match Don’s passion and build upon this terrific program.
We have an engaged board and a dedicated staff who work tirelessly every day in high schools and are present in every one of our college student’s lives. The achievements throughout the past 15 years have been significant, but many academic and financial barriers remain for today’s students seeking a college education. Our mission is one of encouragement, inspiration, counseling and financial support – and EVERY D.C. public and D.C. public charter high school student is eligible for the services we provide.
I served on the DC-CAP board since 2010, and I’m continually impressed with the energy and enthusiasm of those at DC-CAP and the willingness of educators to work with us as we jointly attempt to bring college education to so many young people who previously had not envisioned that as a possibility.
Many of these students are the first in their families to attend college, and I can empathize with that position and their feelings – excited, anxious, questioning, apprehensive and maybe even a little sacred. That was me years ago.
Education is an investment – in our young people and our future. We live in a very different world than when I was college age, and today’s students – more than ever – need to navigate a rapidly changing environment.
Education is powerful, and we need foster the idea of becoming a lifelong learner.
With generous support throughout the years, DC-CAP is helping to create a college-going culture and has doubled the number of D.C. public and public charter high school students enrolling in college and tripling the number who graduate.
I’m eager to expand my role with DC-CAP, build upon Don’s and his team’s many successes and explore new opportunities to guide our young people to college and prepare them for meaningful and rewarding careers. Read more about the announcement here and find out how you might become involved with DC-CAP here.
We’ve moved the needle, but we need to move it more.