College Day Kick Off September 27

San Jose State Hosts Second Annual College Day Kick Off

Nothing inspires like appearances by Sammy and SJSU’s cheer team, both of whom attended this 2011 College Day event (photo courtesy of SJSU Division of Student Affairs)

School Districts, Businesses and Non-profits Join Countywide Effort to Promote College for All Students

Media Contact:
Kim Guptill, (408) 464-3642

SAN JOSE, Calif. – One hundred elementary, middle, and high school students from throughout Santa Clara County will gather at San Jose State University to kick off College Day, starting at 9 a.m. on September 27, on the lawn between Clark Hall and Tower Hall, near the Sculpture Garden featuring the sculpture of SJSU Olympians Tommie Smith and John Carlos. The youngsters will hear from a variety of speakers about their college experiences.

“By sharing the diverse education paths of some of our top leaders in the community with many first generation students, we hope to inspire them to design a path to college for themselves, whether they are fifth graders or are seniors in high school,” said Kim Guptill, College Day Chair.

College Day is a county-wide college-going effort on September 28, spearheaded by the volunteer-led First-Generation College Attainment Coalition. The goal of College Day is to create a college-going culture in Santa Clara County and help our children and youth plan and design their path to college. This happens when educators, youth workers, parents and other adults engage children in conversations, lessons, and other college-promoting activities. The September 27 kick-off will introduce College Day to the entire county. Learn more about applying to SJSU.

Sharing Their Stories

SJSU President Mohammad Qayoumi will welcome the students, and share his path to college, followed by Mark L. Walker, managing director, Global Community Affairs, Applied Materials Foundation, the event’s premier sponsor. Other speakers include Dr. Xavier De La Torre, Santa Clara County Office of Education superintendent; Elaine Chin, dean, Connie L. Lurie College of Education at SJSU; Dave Cortese, Santa Clara County supervisor; Sam Liccardo, San Jose city councilmember; Overfelt High Schools students, and San Jose State University first-generation college students. NBC Bay Area News Reporter Damian Trujillo will serve as master of ceremonies. SJSU’s beloved mascot, Sammy Spartan, will make an appearance.

Across the day and throughout the valley, classrooms, hallways and doors will be decorated with college banners, educational posters and inspirational messages, encouraging students to aspire to go to college. Teachers will begin their day leading students in designing their college paths, and continue by creating College Corners in their classroom. Every student in Santa Clara County will be given a College Day sticker, and every classroom an “Every Day is College Day” poster.

College Day is sponsored by the Applied Materials Foundation, San Jose State University, Kids in Common, Downtown College Prep, Robert Grimm, Lynda Greene and Councilmember Sam Liccardo. Organizations and people who have collaborated to make College Day a reality include: Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID), ALearn, Breakthrough Silicon Valley, College on Track, CommUniverCity, FIRST 5, Franklin McKinley Children’s Initiative, GoVoluntr, Parent Institute for Quality Education (PIQE), Office of the Mayor (City of San Jose), Sacred Heart Community Services, San Jose Public Library, Santa Clara County Office of Education, Silicon Valley Leadership Group, Summer Search, University of California Berkeley, Center for Educational Partnerships (Destination College Advising Corps) and University of California, Santa Cruz, Educational Partnership Center (San Jose Cal-SOAP).

Photo Opportunities

Photo opportunities for members of the media will include students asking questions of President Qayoumi and Overfelt High Schools students speaking.