Postsecondary

The PIC’s postsecondary team recognizes the importance of college completion in an economy that rewards postsecondary degrees and credentials. The PIC employs several coaches who work directly with community college students, helping them navigate the difficult transition from high school to college, access college resources, and advance toward a degree and a career.

Success Boston

Founded in 2008 with a goal of a 70% college completion goal for the Boston Public Schools Class of 2011 and beyond, Success Boston is a citywide effort inspired by former Mayor Thomas Menino and funded by the Boston Foundation through the Social Innovation Fund. Its motto is fourfold: get ready, get in, get through, and get connected. The PIC’s Success Boston postsecondary coaches work with Boston Public Schools graduates attending Bunker Hill Community College, Roxbury Community College, the Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology, Quincy College, and students transitioning to UMass Boston.

Coaches are their students’ biggest advocates. They understand that college can be challenging, especially for students who may be the first in their families to attend, and they’re there to help. Coaches:

  • Provide assistance with college registration, enrollment, and financial aid
  • Support students throughout earning their degree

For more information, contact Annabelle Cataloni, Postsecondary Team Manager, at annabelle.cataloni@bostonpic.org or 617-438-5491.

SkillWorks

While Success Boston coaches work exclusively with graduates of the Boston Public Schools, SkillWorks College Navigator Zeida Santos helps students of all ages and educational backgrounds, with a focus on disconnected 18-24 year olds (often referred to as “opportunity youth”) and adult graduates of training programs funded by SkillWorks. Zeida provides the following services to students and staff at Bunker Hill Community College and Roxbury Community College:

  • Guiding students through applications, financial aid forms, and the career planning process
  • Helping students utilize on and off campus services
  • Connecting community colleges with workforce agencies to facilitate collaboration

For more information, contact Zeida Santos, SkillWorks College Navigator, at zeida.santos@bostonpic.org or 617-413-7791.

Getting Connected

The PIC launched a career navigation and internship program for community college students from Boston. Getting Connected aims to better prepare students for the world of work following college graduation. Students enrolled at Bunker Hill Community College meet with a PIC employer engagement staff member who will advise students on their employment options and match them with the needs of employers based on students’ skills, interests, and experiences.

Getting Connected provides:

  • Resume-building, professional and workplace skill workshops, and mock interviews
  • Prepared students who are ready to work
  • A no-fee referral service to workers who can fill staffing needs
  • Assistance building companies’ workforce development pipelines
  • Access to PIC staff who provide support throughout the process
Jennifer Bonilla - Paying it forward
Jennifer Bonilla connected with the PIC when she was a sophomore at East Boston High School. Read More>

Jennifer Bonilla connected with the PIC when she was a sophomore at East Boston High School. An English Language Learner (ELL), Jennifer was looking for opportunities to apply the new skills she was learning in school. She sought out the PIC career specialist at her school who helped her secure a summer job at the YMCA.

After graduating high school, Jennifer enrolled at Bunker Hill Community College. Coincidentally, her career specialist had just taken a new position as a PIC postsecondary coach within the Success Boston initiative. Jennifer was happy to turn to her former career specialist who helped her through the process of completing financial aid documents and registering for classes. Her PIC coach helped Jennifer qualify for both Mayor Walsh’s Tuition Free Community College plan and Bunker Hill’s GPA Pilot Program. Thanks to this guidance, Jennifer was able to enroll in college credit courses based on her high school grade point average without taking Accuplacer, the placement test that sends so many students into developmental courses that do not count toward graduation.

Jennifer is currently in her first year of the General Studies program at BHCC and making good progress. She aspires to a career in education with the goal of becoming a high school ELL teacher, working with students who will follow a path similar to her own.

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