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Follow the Data Podcast: Peer-to-Peer College Advising – Does It Work?

The coronavirus pandemic has exposed many inequities – and for high-achieving, lower-income high school seniors, the cost of higher education may make enrolling in college even more challenging. The National College Attainment Network analysis of FAFSA data through August reports that 1000,000 fewer high school seniors completed financial aid applications for college admissions this year.

This episode is a sequel to episode #83, “Virtual College Advising – Does It Work?”, where we heard from an advisor and advisee from our CollegePoint program, which aims to help high-achieving, lower-income high school students apply to and attend top colleges and universities. The initiative focuses on talented lower-income students because research shows that more than half of these students in the U.S. do not apply to any selective colleges or universities despite their qualifications.

One of our CollegePoint partners, Matriculate, trains college student Advising Fellows to help high-achieving, lower-income high school students identify colleges that are a good fit, complete resumes, recommendations, and application forms, apply for financial aid, compare aid packages, and prepare academically, socially, and emotionally to succeed in college.

On this episode, Jhenielle Reynolds, who works on the education team at Bloomberg Philanthropies, sits down with Mikayla Deckard, Matriculate’s Head Virtual Advising Fellow, and a student at Indiana University – Bloomington, and Freddy Rodriguez, a high school student currently applying to college with the help of CollegePoint.


Mikayla Deckard, Matriculate’s Head Virtual Advising Fellow, and a student at Indiana University – Bloomington

Mikayla and Freddy join the podcast to tell us about how they’re working together to navigate the uncertainties of applying to college during a pandemic and share advice for other students in the college admissions process.

You can listen to the podcast and past episodes in the following ways:

And catch up on the first episode in this series:

Virtual College Advising – Does It Work?