The Admit List

Providing low income high school students with free, remote college counseling.

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  • Education
  • Technology

Are you employed by T-Mobile or related to an employee of T-Mobile?

  • No

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Date You Started Your Project Started


Project Stage: Select the description below that best applies to your approach.

  • Start-Up (first few activities have happened)

1. The Problem: What problem are you helping to solve?

The resource disparity between students in low income communities and students in wealthier communities is increasing at an alarming rate. Students miss deadlines, miss out on resources, and miss opportunities to thrive because the system in place to help them navigate the college admissions scene is stretched incredibly thin. Solving it matters because college is the great American equalizer. Students who go to college can make millions more.

2. Your Solution: How are you planning to solve this problem? Share your specific approach.

The Admit List is special because we focus on developing 1:1 relationships between college students and high school students. College students today are more well-equipped than most adults when it comes to relevant information, experience, and knowledge regarding the college admissions process. By pairing low-income high school students with college students, we foster candid conversations, mentorship, friendship, and an exchange of information between people that went through the college admissions process in the past few years and students who could really use help in narrowing their search and making sure that they hit deadlines and targets to succeed. High school students are paired with college students and talk virtually once a week to facilitate conversations about upcoming deadlines, for help with editing college essays, and trying to figure out a strategy for how to tackle the admissions season.

3. Personal Journey: What’s the story behind why you decided to start this project?

I grew up a town over from where my family lives now. My elementary school was 85% economically disadvantaged, 50% ELL, and 86% minority students of color. By the time I was in middle school, I had moved 15 minutes away, my peers were 96.12% white, and the average student's family made 4 times the national average household income. The vast differences in the accessibility and availability of resources pushed me to try to think of something, anything, to try to create change. Enter The Admit List. What started as a late night brainstorming session to try to figure out what helped me personally during the college admissions process (spoiler alert: talking lol) has turned into a well-organized, collaborative, beautiful community of mentors and mentees and teachers and advisors all working to uplift one another and guide those who need help through a confusing and shady process.

4. Selfie Elevator Pitch: Include 1-minute video that answers the following “I am stepping up to make change because...”

5. Example: Please walk us through a specific example of what happens when a person or group gets involved with your project.

There are two main ways people can get involved with the work The Admit List is doing. You can either be a college student willing to college counsel a high school student, or a high school student looking for resources. The tracks are a little bit different for both. College Students: Apply online! If we think you're a good fit, we'll call you and talk about the required time commitment, etc. If you're still in, you get to go through (short) sensitivity training, and then woo! You get matched! At this point, you follow our curriculum while interspersing your own experiences and be a fantastic mentor! HS Students: You also apply online! If we're at capacity, we'll place you on a waiting list. If we're not, someone will reach out to you shortly to figure out what times work well for your schedule, etc. Then, you're committed to 1hr/week with your mentor to talk about college and stuff.

6. The X Factor: What is different about your project compared to other programs or solutions already out there?

There are so many programs out there that target top students with low income backgrounds, which provides amazing individuals with the chance to help uplift themselves and their circumstances. While this is a noble endeavor, The Admit List is here to help everyone -- not just the kids who want to go to a top 10 school. With a mentor base comprised of kids at community colleges, HBCUs, and more, we're equipped to help students with all sorts of backgrounds and unique experiences. Aside from that, we operate primarily remotely. This lets us reach lots of people who wouldn't otherwise get help.

7. Impact: How has your project made a difference so far?

We launched our pilot of high school-college student mentorship pairs in June 2019. Since then, we've launched another cohort that went active on September 1, 2019. Those are all going well (woO!), and we're conducting data analysis on the feedback we're getting from involved parties to launch another round of the mentorship program during the 2020-2021 admissions cycle. Aside from that, we're currently working on College Essay Bootcamps, which are 8 hour long sessions during which high school students show up and work on their first drafts of the Common Application essay with college students and teachers. It's not too comprehensive, but we think it's definitely a good first step.

8. What’s Next: What are your ideas for taking your project to the next level?

The Admit List is also working on The College Book, which is what we envision to be the largest collaborative literature on college admissions to date. With hundreds of students interested in contributing, it'll be some of the most comprehensive material out there on how to get into schools simply through the fact that it will compile the experiences and advice of so many different students with so many diverse outlooks in one place.

9. Which of the following types of expertise would be most useful for you?

  • Legal Services

10. Finances: If applicable, have you mobilized any of the following resources so far?

  • Friend support

How did you hear about this challenge?

  • Recommended by others
  • Word of mouth


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