Realizing the “Promise” of Promise Programs: Building and Sustaining Effective Community Partnerships
October 11 │ 10:30 am - 11:30 am

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Fairfield School District logo

This session will focus on how “Promise” initiatives are helping rural students transition into postsecondary activities. 

For many students in rural areas such as Fairfield County, S.C., the idea of attending college seems like an impossible dream due to lack of finances and access to resources. In a county where 95% of the industry has closed their doors and relocated, the only options available to students to make it out of the area has been to the military or postsecondary education.

This session will discuss how a small low-income rural county developed innovative and collaborative initiatives to address the problem of access to postsecondary educational opportunities. For example, the business community collaborated with the school district to develop apprenticeship programs in the fields of construction, welding and masonry. 

In 2019, the Fairfield County School District and Midlands Technical College established the “Fairfield Promise” scholarship to provide high school graduates a pathway to tuition-free college. This presentation will discuss how “Promise” initiatives are broadening access for rural and first generation students to education beyond high school.