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Aggies Reaching Out

Stephanie Cannon '06 November 22, 2013 3:47 PM

By Roberto Molar Candanosa ’13

Aggies Reaching Out, a component of the leadership organization MSC LEAD, is a student-run program dedicated to encouraging South Texas eighth-graders to pursue higher education. ARO program advisor Amber Acosta ’07 does not waver when she says the outreach and mentorship program works dutifully to close the gap of the underrepresented population in college.

Every summer, 60 Aggies journey down to the Rio Grande Valley for a weeklong trip, speaking with middle school students about the importance of college and why it is a possibility for them. ARO counselors organize leadership activities, talk to students about their future plans, and lead meetings where parents can learn more about college and financial aid.

Acosta said that through their service, ARO counselors enrich their own personal and social responsibility, while demonstrating social, cultural and global competence.

“The gap of underrepresented students in college is a nationwide trend, a statewide trend and a local trend,” she said. “This is a one-on-one mentorship program that our Aggies provide, taking a global issue and engaging locally to change the course and close the gap of minorities in college.”

Helping underrepresented children dream big about higher education is possible, thanks in part to the generous donors of The Association of Former Students. With their help, ARO is able to cover the cost of transportation, programs, food and other miscellaneous expenses. These funds also sponsor students from South Texas to come to College Station and enjoy a day in Aggieland.

“ARO impacts not only the curricular, but also the extracurricular life of our students,” Acosta said. “It shapes Aggies to learn values in and out of class—and we would not be able to do that without The Association.”

Financial support of Aggies Reaching Out is just one of the many ways Texas A&M is impacted by the generous donors to The Association's Annual Fund. Click to see more ways in which your gifts make an impact  on Texas A&M students, faculty and staff.

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