We are ASPIRE! The Access to Student assistance Programs In Reach of Everyone initiative that is administered by the Oregon state agency of OSAC. (Office of Student Access and Completion) We are here to help Middle school, High School, and college students across Oregon take steps forward towards their future. The ASPIRE program started with just four sites in 1998 and has now grown to over a 160 sites statewide. As the ASPIRE program we strive to:
- Help high schools build a sustainable community of volunteer mentors
- Educate students and families about the scholarship application process and other options for paying for post-secondary education
- Provide mentoring, resources, and encouragement to help students access education and training beyond high school
With so many sites all over the state, we rely heavily on our team of coordinators and volunteers to be representatives of ASPIRE in their communities. As a team, we see you as a wealth of knowledge on education, scholarships, financial aid, and a wide variety of other topics related to college readiness. We believe we have some of the most dedicated people standing with us, and we don’t know what we would do without all of you. We see all the hard work that you are doing, and we want to make sure that we spread the word, not only, about all the wonderful things you do, but all of the important things you know. As the ASPIRE staff, we want to take your knowledge and capture it so that others can access that knowledge.
We have two volunteers that have consistently stood out as being on top of ALL things having to do with preparing for life after high school. Some of you may know them, George A. Letchworth and Will Rutherford, two wonderful volunteers from Mckenzie High School in Blue River, Oregon.
George A. Letchworth, Ph.D., ASPIRE Mentor, McKenzie High School
George Letchworth has assisted in establishing the ASPIRE program at McKenzie High School and has been an ASPIRE Mentor for 13 years. McKenzie ASPIRE offers ten college planning workshops on different facets of college planning. He is an emeritus professor of psychology and education.
Will Rutherford, ASPIRE Mentor, McKenzie High School
Will Rutherford has worked as an ASPIRE mentor at McKenzie High School for 6 years. His vocational experiences include the US Air Force and working in the telecommunications industry. Will has also participated as a member of the ASPIRE Advisory Group and as a Ford Family scholarship evaluator.
Both of these men have excellent experience working with the ASPIRE program and love to research how they can help their students pay for college. Once they have cultivated a sufficient amount of information on a particular topic they like to send out “blasts” to update anyone and everyone about what they have discovered. ASPIRE is taking those “blasts” or emails and turning them into blog posts, so that we can ALL have access to the “blasts” when we need it.
We look forward to starting this endeavor and hope that you will join us by following and subscribing to this blog.
Keep up the good work!!!!!
The ASPIRE Team