This is part of the eighth annual College March as hundreds of fellow students, teachers, family members, local businesses and community leaders cheer them on. Marchers, most of whom aspire to be the first in their family to complete college, are met by their school’s marching band, homemade posters and signs, and other festive and visual elements. The annual ritual promotes the ideal of college access for all and helps foster college-going cultures in participating schools.
Recognized by President Barack Obama in his 2014 State of the Union address, the College March began in 2011 at the NYC Outward Bound school WHEELS, and by 2012 had spread throughout NYC Outward Bound’s network of New York City public schools. By 2014, several schools from the national EL Education network and the North Texas-based Uplift Education network had joined the March, which is open to any high school interested in participating. To help others to replicate the practice, NYC Outward Bound Schools created a set of open source resources on www.collegemarch.org.
Capital One continues to support the NYC Outward Bound schools’ College March—associates volunteer to cheer on students on, serve lunch to the seniors after the March, and offer support for sweatshirts and college pennants to help make the event even more special for the students.