Finding your college potential

Local group guides teens through college process

(WMAR) - Tuesday is National College Decision Day, the deadline for seniors to choose what college they plan to attend in the fall. Thanks to Pure Potential Enterprises this college dream became a reality for a few Baltimore County students and their parents.

Founded in 2008, Pure Potential Enterprises was created to serve as a bridge to decrease the opportunity gap that exists within the Baltimore community. The organization focuses on the whole child, acting as a support system to address the social, emotional, and intellectual needs of their scholars.

"So what we do is take that pressure off the parents and the students because your senior year is really very over whelming and if you really don't have the right direction you can really make a poor choose," said Phyllis Coley, P.P.E. founder. "What we try to do at Pure Potential Enterprise is to help them take that pressure off of them and give them a really clear path to success."

Stacey Carver Jr. is a senior at Lansdowne High School and a current member of P.P.E. For National College Decision Day, he chose Morehouse College, in Atlanta, Georgia. He said he picked that university because there is a lot of brotherhood and connection between students and the teachers and everyone has so much love for each other.

Carver's mother said she is thankful for the organization which kept him way ahead during the college application process.

"My son had everything done in June, so in September when it was time to apply for school he had on hand a portfolio in a binder as well as online, said Adrienne Carver. "So if it's an electronic application it's nothing but hitting send and if you are going to a college fair you're going to get every onsite acceptance that you possible can because everything is right their in your hand."

Some of the programs P.P.E. offers are PPE Cares, Youth Empowerment Conference, Parent Workshops, and Passport Series. Through these programs, participants are educated on picking the right college that fits them emotionally, physically and financially. With the help of writing college essays and finding scholarships.

"I got a $500 scholarship from Alpha Phi Alpha from the Baltimore Chapter of the Alphas, said Zackary Jeffers."I got multiply scholarships from the schools I applied to. I applied to 21 schools and I got into 20 of them. I got tuition and fees from 12 of those schools and I got two full rides."       

Zackary Jeffers is a senior from Western School of Technology and Environmental Science and a member of P.P.E. For National College Decision Day, he chose Morgan State University. Jeffers and his mother said they were not prepared for all of the applications that needed to be submitted but P.P.E. made it as simple as possible.

"As a working mom I didn't have a lot of time to dedicate towards that and it's really a full time job and they gave us an opportunity to just enjoy the process," said Chanda Jeffers, parent. 

Pure Potential Enterprises holds a number of fundraisers throughout the year to help make their services to students as low cost as possible. Their next event is the Vendor Expo & Community Resource Fair on Sunday, May 6th from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. at Milford Mill Academy. For more information about the organization and how to get involved visit their website.

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