Arkansas Tech University criminal justice honor society students recently donated more than 50 college preparation packets to historically underserved youth.
Juvenile justice officers in each Arkansas River Valley county will distribute the materials to prospective college students.
Alpha Phi Sigma’s Get Ready In Time (GRIT) program provided letters of encouragement to troubled teens, each written by ATU students or faculty who overcame early life challenges themselves. They also gave college application information, financial aid details and ATU apparel.
“Sometimes people look down on those with a background in delinquency,” said Dr. Jason Ulsperger, ATU professor of sociology and advisor for ATU’s chapter of Alpha Phi Sigma. “They shouldn’t. It has been my experience that many are more determined and grateful of opportunities to learn than the typical student. However, knowing what opportunities exist is a challenge when you have no exposure to higher education. We were sure to let these kids know that we do not care where they go to college, just that they go.”
The donations are part of an ongoing effort by Alpha Phi Sigma students to help vulnerable children and teens. The ATU chapter has received national and local recognition for its work, including the 2021 Alpha Phi Sigma national service award.
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