How to Work with CBOs to Supercharge Your Recruiting Efforts


How to Work with CBOs to Supercharge Your Recruiting Efforts

Episode 139. February 21, 2023.

Welcome to the Office Hours with EAB podcast. You can join the conversation on social media using #EABOfficeHours. Follow the podcast on Spotify, Google Podcasts, Apple Podcasts, SoundCloud and Stitcher or visit our podcast homepage for additional episodes.

Juli Scalf, part of the College Greenlight team at EAB, is joined by Jordan Wesley, Managing Director of Partnerships for a community-based organization called Let’s Get Ready.

The two discuss ways to forge better partnerships with CBOs by understanding the role they play in helping students overcome obstacles when applying to colleges. Jordan also shares tips for admissions teams who want to communicate and work more effectively with CBOs to boost enrollment.



0:00:11.3 Speaker 1: Hello and welcome to Office Hours With EAB. Today, we look at the role that community-based organizations can play in helping colleges find, connect and engage with prospective students who might not otherwise appear on your recruiting radar. Our experts share advice for recruiters and those who lead them to improve your working relationships with CBOs, who can become your biggest advocates. Give these folks a listen and enjoy.


0:00:44.7 Juli Scalf: Hello and welcome to Office Hours With EAB. My name is Juli Scalf and I'm a Senior Manager of Partner Engagement for College Greenlight. For those of you who haven't heard of College Greenlight, the simplest way to describe it is that we're a network of partners dedicated to supporting first generation, lower income and historically underserved students on their path to and through higher education. College Greenlight became part of EAB in 2020, and we continue to help students connect with colleges and universities to help them find their best college fit and the financial support that they need. One of the principal ways that we do this is by working closely with our extensive network of community-based organizations, also known as CBOs. And I'm excited today to be joined by Jordan Wesley, who's the Managing Director of Partnerships for one of the CBOs that we work with. Jordan, welcome. And can you tell us a little bit about your organization and the role that you play?

0:01:54.9 Jordan Wesley: Hi, Juli and everyone, I'm glad to be here with you this afternoon. I'd love the chance to talk about Let's Get Ready and the work that we do. So Let's Get Ready is a national near-peer mentoring organization. We're committed to educational equity and we focus on students from 11th grade all the way through to college graduation. So our students come from urban and rural communities across 22 states, they're attending two and four-year institutions, they're going to predominantly white institutions and HBCUs, they're going to public schools, private schools, they're really all over the country. And really similar to College Greenlight, the majority of our students will be first generation to college, they come from low-income communities, and they come from communities that have been historically marginalized in higher education. So our near-peer coaching programs at Let's Get Ready are fully virtual, they're text-based, culturally responsive, and they're built on youth development and behavioral economics research. Really, ultimately, I think at Let's Get Ready what we believe in and we invest in is we're investing in the power of young people to help one another reach their college aspirations.

0:03:06.9 JW: So that's really exciting to me because I was actually trained as a social worker in my early career. So before I came to Let's Get Ready, I've worked with a number of community-based organizations to directly support high school students on their post-secondary planning, and I actually started my work at Let's Get Ready in our direct student work as well. So I just transitioned more recently into an external-facing role. So right now I actually work most closely with our partners, including you guys and along [chuckle] with others to make sure that we're sharing data transparently, to collaborate, to improve our programs, to make sure our partners have what they need to understand the kinds of impactful relationships that their students are having with their near-peers. And I'm also responsible for our growth strategy, Let's Get Ready is growing across the country, so we started with a strategic plan serving 13,000 students in 2021, and our goal is to serve 25,000 students by 2025. This year, I'm glad to say we'll serve about 18,000 students, so I'm excited to be part of the team that's making that possible.

0:04:14.7 JS: Thank you, Jordan. And I'll just say that here at College Greenlight and EAB, we're so thankful to have you and Let's Get Ready as a member of our network and for the work that we're able to accomplish together. For the benefit of our listeners today who may or may not be super familiar with how colleges work with CBOs and how CBOs work with colleges, could you explain a little bit about how CBOs operate and the work that they typically do with colleges, really also why should our listeners care about these partnerships?

0:04:52.0 JW: Yeah, absolutely. [chuckle] Yeah, I think CBOs are challenging. I think even in my personal life, I say this, I toss this word around all the time, and people who are not in the industry are like, "What's a CBO? What are you talking about?" So I think it's a fair question that many people have. So a CBO, community-based organization, is a really broad term that I would say is probably most often used pretty interchangeably with non-profit. CBOs may focus on different age groups, so maybe they work with young people or they work with aging folks. They have different types of interventions that they're working on, like maybe public health or arts and music or athletic programs or violence prevention. There's just sort of... As many societal challenges as there are are the number of types of CBOs that there are really in our communities. And so I'll speak specifically to the education space since that's what we're here to talk about today. I would say a couple things that might be interesting for people to know about CBOs that are really focused on education is that sometimes you'll find CBOs who are actually based in a high school.

0:06:01.8 JW: So I have worked in one of those before, where I worked for the CBO, but my office was actually in a public school building, and I was collaborating with the administrators and the district people there. Some of them are community-based, they're in things like Boys and Girls Clubs, or the Boys and Girl Scouts, there's... Sort of more focused on a neighborhood or something like that. And some of them, I would say, are specifically focused on college planning, like Let's Get Ready, and a lot of others in your network. So some of them do that through other enrichment activities. So like for example we used to post more fun-type things in high school, but then when the students would come, we'd sneakily tie it back to college planning, like, "Isn't it so great that you're interested in visiting with this doctor? Let's talk about how you become a doctor," whatever the case may be. So you'll find that CBOs are mostly funded through philanthropy or public money. And I would say that even beyond this broad types of organizations, the ones that are really focused on college planning, there's been this, I would say, I don't know... In the last 20 years, there's been this really big resurgence of community-based organizations that are, I would say, kind of called college access and success as a general bucket term.

0:07:30.8 JW: So yeah, I mention that last piece mostly because I think we know that in the why should you care vein, [chuckle] colleges are often depending on CBOs to extend their own ability to find and connect with and engage potential students. And the way that a CBO might interact with a college that's trying to connect with them really could be dependent on any number of those factors that I just mentioned, whether or not they see themselves as specifically college access and success, or if they offer other services, all of that. So... I don't know, I can say so much more about that, [chuckle] about how we work together, I don't know if that would be like... If there's more you'd want me to say related to how we work together.

0:08:17.1 JS: Yeah. I think one thing that you mentioned earlier is the term near-peer model. And I know that in the college access world, we use a lot of acronyms and vernacular that people aren't super familiar with. I wonder if you could say a little bit more about that near-peer model, what it is, where that comes from, for people to get that context?

0:08:45.0 JW: I don't know what alphabet soup you're talking about, we always use plain language in my world, Juli.


0:08:51.3 JS: We try, we try.

0:08:53.4 JW: [chuckle] No. So near-peer coaching is a research-based strategy that's demonstrated a lot of positive outcomes for Let's Get Ready. It's our primary lever, near-peer coaching is the main thing that we see driving our students' outcomes, specifically on their college graduation outcomes. Near-peer coaches is our secret sauce to how we see our students graduating from college at double the rates of their peers across the country. And really it's a strategy that is leveraging and harnessing the lived experience in Let's Get Ready's case of current college students. Some other programs may say near-peer coaching and mean students who have just recently graduated from college, but the main point is age proximity as the valuable lever for supporting students as they're trying to apply to and complete college. So at Let's Get Ready, we hire, train, support, we pay older college students. And they're offering tactical college application support, but they're also offering the sticky stuff, the social and emotional stuff that really only someone who's close in age can provide to a student. So beyond the goal of college enrollment and graduations through near-peer connections, I think...

0:10:14.8 JW: At Let's Get Ready I feel like we're really cultivating a community of leaders because over half of our near-peer coaches are also... Been participants in the program, so they're working towards their own success, but they're also really leading the charge and paying it forward for a more equitable future in higher education. But again, I could really go on and on, 'cause I do love our program, and I especially love our coaches and sort of the ways that they invest in the next generation who are coming up right behind them. So I'll stop there. Because I know also that you guys at College Greenlight work with a lot of community-based organizations yourself too. And I'm... It's making me think as we're talking here, I'm talking a lot about Let's Get Ready, but [chuckle] what are some of the other things that you see? You have a really broad national lens on CBOs, and particularly CBOs that are supporting students on their college application journey. So how do you see them working with students?

0:11:12.9 JS: Yeah, it's interesting. Because I think for me personally, my first experience in college access was as a near-peer mentor right after I graduated from college in an AmeriCorps program where we were leveraging the age proximity to provide services. And since I've joined the College Greenlight team, what I've really seen is that in our network of more than 1500 CBOs around the country, there's every model, intervention, strategy, focus area under the sun. And so when we're working with colleges, it's helpful. We're able to work together to come up with a definition of what are the specific types of CBOs that will be most beneficial for what that college is focused on or how they might wanna make an impact, and can we build a list of those organizations from everything that's out there? Of those 1500 organizations, a lot of them certainly are providing "traditional college advising" to 11th and 12th graders, a lot of test prep like Let's Get Ready. But we see a lot of programs also that are starting early, as early as in middle school or in ninth grade, to provide additional support to students to help them even before they're thinking about where to apply to college to build the skills necessary to be strong applicants.

0:12:46.4 JS: That could be academic support, tutoring services, academic enrichment opportunities, opportunities in STEM or writing or the arts and a lot of guidance around course selection so that students have a strong resume by the time they get to applying for college and really have the college options that they want based on the profile that they've built. The other thing that's neat, I think, is to see all the CBOs that provide funding either through scholarships or to pay for books and supplies, computers or to pay for summer pre-college academic programs so that students can go and live on a college campus. And so the other thing I think it's important for people to know about CBOs is what experts they are in their home community. Some CBOs work in a single school, but many in multiple schools or multiple neighborhoods or multiple cities or across the country, like you all. And those CBOs can see what's happening, they know the trends, and they can share those trends with colleges, especially when colleges aren't able to spend that time researching or digging deep into every little pocket of the nation, I think for colleges working with CBOs can really be a force multiplier in their work.

0:14:21.8 JS: Jordan, could you share maybe a little bit more about the different kinds of CBO counselors, another buzzword there, and explain some of the ways that those counselors, advisors, etcetera, support the work that's happening in high schools?

0:14:40.2 JW: Yeah, I can definitely do that. But before I do that, I didn't know that you were once a near-peer coach.

0:14:45.8 JS: Yes.

0:14:46.9 JW: And now I know why I like you so much. [laughter]

0:14:51.3 JS: Many, many years ago.

0:14:51.8 JW: That's great. So yes, there are admittedly a million names for these roles and these organizations. And so you're gonna see things... If you're looking at a CBO website and you're trying to figure out, "Who should I try and talk to?", you might see coach, like us, you might see advisor, counselor, which may or may not mean they work for the school, [chuckle] they could work for an external organization. Sometimes you'll see like advocate, sometimes you'll see things like coordinator, college access coordinator, we've kinda talked earlier about this idea of this emerging college access and success branded organization, so you'll see college access coordinator, college success coordinator. Sometimes you'll see post-secondary in the title, especially organizations who maybe do both college planning and more like career vocational training, they might call them post-secondary advisors. So there's... And that's probably not even all, [chuckle] that's just the ones that I thought of right now. So I guess in some cases, these people are near-peer coaches, and in some cases, somebody like an AmeriCorps member or something is the primary source of college advising support in that community. Sometimes there's multiple CBOs, and so they have...

0:16:11.6 JW: The near-peers are actually a supplement to some sort of professional full-time staff that's there. It's really kind of a hodge-podge. And I think that that point is a really important one when we're talking about who are you trying to contact at a CBO. Because really I think the issue is about high advising caseloads, is really what much of this comes down to, is that you look in the educational inequalities in secondary education systems nationally, and it means that some students go to school in a place where their guidance counselors or their traditional go-to person in the school is responsible for 500-plus students, and there's no college advisor employed by the school district or by the school. And so those counselors here in the building, they're focusing on programming to make sure students get the credits they need to graduate high school, they're focused on mandated reporting, they're focused on lunch duty or monitoring, they have this huge slew of positions and jobs that they're responsible for. And just to put that in perspective too, the National School Counseling Association actually recommends a ratio of 250 to 1. And I think the national average is something like 432 last I looked, something like that.

0:17:30.1 JW: But so because of that, the many different roles that you find CBOs filling, these job titles, they're really kind of a patchwork of local communities trying to figure out how to fill these sort of huge under-funding and educational disinvestment issues that are happening in their school districts. And so when you're trying to work at these organizations, I think it's important to really take a holistic approach. Because it's... I will not pretend like it's gonna be easy to figure out who to talk to. And the truth is, is sometimes you'll find really complex relational dynamics, because I can just speak for some of my positions. Like I was a CBO at a high school, but some of the teachers weren't happy that I was a CBO in the high school, 'cause they felt like the city's union should be providing college advisor jobs. And so if you reached out to a teacher to say... Or a counselor to say, "Hey, what should I do about college advising?", they may not have put you in touch with me, because they [chuckle] were actually mad that I was in the school building. But then other times I won them over eventually. Don't worry, but you might run into some complications beyond even just figuring out who to reach out to. So, yeah.

0:18:37.8 JS: Well, and you said there like the recommendation is 250 students to 1, and right now it's 400 or like 700 in some places to 1. And then you think about like students who attend independent schools who are benefiting from these much smaller ratios. I think that's a good reminder that it's all these different players trying to support students at the end of the day, to help students accomplish their goals and navigate these complex structures. And so, yeah, sometimes that means reaching out to lots of people. And I know when I was school-based, there were plenty of times when I got contacted and I wasn't the person that they should have reached out to and that's okay, you know, we have to keep trying and casting a wide net to find the right person who's the best fit. You and your colleagues, you know, work with college recruiters and admission staff all the time, either because they have found you or you seek them out. How do you interact with these folks and who reaches out to whom and how and what's working and not working in that communication?

0:19:54.5 JW: Yeah, I think really there's like two main ways I would say, just the like nitty-gritty how. It's like email and conferences. That's probably the primary two things. And I would say when I was doing a lot more work directly with students and even when I talk with my colleagues now, I think there's often a preference to be at sort of like larger scale events. So it may be like a more national conference but it could just be sort of a larger scale event where there's a lot of college representatives in one place at one time. Because I think that sometimes it can be easier to sort of navigate and manage all of those rather than trying to respond to every single individual email that comes through your door. You know, one thing I think is important to say and I know I think we've talked about this before too is that these convenings or sort of spaces where a lot of people come together are really good ways to connect with colleges. But I would also just say for colleges to be cognizant that it's typically CBOs that can afford to be in those spaces that are there.

0:21:00.4 JW: And so you might miss out on some of the smaller organizations who can actually be major advocates for you if you only reply or rely on those. So I've seen some really cool things happening where colleges get together themselves to kind of become a conglomerate and then approach CBOs together. So like I know in where I live, I live in New York City and so there's like the New York Six and they kind of came together and said like, "Let's share recruiting resources." So they'll host like shared fairs or shared opportunities for like fly-in programs or stuff. And so I think, you know, even if you're not getting connected to these sort of more national convening spaces, I think there's stuff that you can do to take leadership even just with the other colleges in your area. So yeah, I would say that, to maybe like be a little cheeky is that, I would just say too that I feel like the way that I don't connect with colleges are the ones that just send me an email over and over again that say, "I'll be in town, can I visit your school?" Because first of all, if they're sending me that email now, if they looked at my website, they would realize I don't work in a school.


0:22:12.9 JW: So that's very annoying to me, but I just think that like we have... Usually CBOs, we know our students, we know which schools they wanna go to, we know which schools can offer them the kinds of financial aid they need. And so often we're going through our sort of like, I mean, not to sound old, but like our virtual Rolodex because I have a contact list now, like we were kind of making a plan for rep visits at the beginning of the year. And so it might be kind of discouraging to hear that, to say like, well, then how do I get on your list? But I think that relationship building, a little bit of research about what we're doing, being able to see if there are ways you can help with our educational equity efforts, that relationship building I think goes a long way to open up if you are facing an email wall. [chuckle]

0:23:05.1 JS: Yes, yes. And I know I was guilty of that certainly at times and you're just feeling overwhelmed, and the fall is the peak busy season for a CBO and trying to support students is the first priority always. And so we at College Greenlight, we think we are... Or the piece of advice we give to our college partners is to think about the CBO's calendar before you reach out, in part because the calendars are opposite, the busy seasons are opposite. And so that opportunity for partnership really probably comes when colleges are feeling pretty busy themselves, but that's when CBOs are feeling like they have time to connect and do that deeper level work before the fall arrives. I'd say the other thing that we hear just kind of a piece of advice to the admissions folks listening is that you mentioned to this and we hear it from many of our partners that when a recruiter says they're willing to pitch in with something like a FAFSA workshop or give feedback on essays or talk to family members about the transition to college, that is the most likely time that you're gonna get a response as opposed to just wanting to do an information session which might feel like it doesn't add as much in that really busy fall.

0:24:36.3 JW: I guess, absolutely. I can't tell you how many times I would like... Someone would say, "Yeah, I'll come to your college essay editing event," or they'd volunteer for something. And I'm like, "Sure, you can have 20 minutes at the end of this event if you will spend the first two hours helping me with FAFSAs, like, absolutely."

0:24:52.5 JS: Yes, and then there's so much goodwill too.

0:24:54.5 JW: Yes, oh, so much.

0:24:54.6 JS: You know, that really sequence. Yeah. So we've talked a little bit about how the communication process isn't necessarily perfect and there's definitely room for improvement. What are some other best practices that you'd like admissions teams to follow when they're reaching out to CBOs and what kind of information do you wish you could get from them to help you do your job well?

0:25:23.2 JW: Yeah, I think... I hope people have heard in this conversation that CBOs, we're often incredibly focused on prioritizing both like our students' voice and their choice in the college application process, and we're also really focused on educating young people about some of the challenges they can get into around debt or what it might be like to have a kind of a culture fit mismatch, or if you get into a situation where your identity isn't valued at a particular campus, all of that kind of stuff. And so we are constantly trying to help students plan for, think about, understand all that might be facing them as they move forward towards their post-secondary goals. And I think inviting higher education to understand some of our skepticism because of some of the experiences our students have had, and I think being willing to validate the reasons for our skepticism is actually a really important start for me, because if I know that you understand that what I'm saying about my concerns are real, and that you understand that the challenges that first-gen students are facing, or that you understand the challenges that students of color are facing when they come to your campus, if you can acknowledge that, then actually we can build a lot from there, you know?

0:26:49.0 JW: And so I think there's that as one side. And, you know, we're also not so like one-sided. Like I do think that CBOs really do understand and care about the challenges that higher education is facing. We know that like you have important bottom lines too. And really, especially because if your enrollment suffers, we all know, all of us together know, like student support is what's gonna suffer, right? And so we don't want that for your campus, and we don't want that for our students. And I think being able to find that common ground is so important. And I think it's actually, Juli didn't ask me to say this, but I think it's one thing that the College Greenlight team does really well. [chuckle]

0:27:28.4 JS: Thank you, I'll take that.

0:27:29.8 JW: Yeah, yeah, you guys do. Just inviting everyone to understand the other side. If I get down to sort of the brass tacks, like the practical, what should you do kind of thing, I think the single biggest piece of advice I would offer is really around transparent and honest communication about what your school does and doesn't have to support our students. You know, I think that we and our students are really savvy consumers. So we usually know if you have that thing that you say you have or not, or if you're sort of like over-speaking it because we sent a kid there last year and they told us, or we just have done a lot of work with our students to understand these schools. And so I think that at the end of the day, if your school doesn't have the very best top-notch student services for students who are first-generation to college, or if your services that are focused for students of color or LGBTQ students, whoever the student may be, aren't exactly what you would want them to be, I think the most important thing to do is to just be honest about that.

0:28:35.5 JW: Because I think that as a CBO, our students, we care about student choice. And so students may choose your institution anyway, and students may... They have other really great reasons. Like they may really care about the engineering program that you have and they're willing to sort of find support in other ways because of that. And so I think as a CBO, we'd love to be a partner to you and saying, "Okay, this student has chosen this school. There are some gaps in maybe where their supports are available. And so what can we as a CBO do to both prepare them for that experience, but then also come alongside them as they're making that transition?" So I think that's probably the biggest piece of practical advice I'd offer.

0:29:18.6 JS: Well, and then I think you're so right. It's such a good recommendation. Just that candor, right? Candor is kindness. But also I think it's this recognition that everyone is doing better every year. So if there is something that's not in communications or in resources that isn't perfect yet, every year it gets better. And I think it's great for CBOs to hear admissions teams about what has changed, even if it feels like a little tweak. Those pieces make it easier for like a CBO to understand where they need to provide additional supports or where that new advising program or that new grant opportunity actually makes an institution a better fit today than maybe it was yesterday and they can disseminate that information.

0:30:09.0 JW: Yeah, absolutely. I think that's right. Yeah, definitely. Well, and I mean, I think too, we've talked about some of this before. I know that College Greenlight has been so effective at bridging that gap between CBOs and admissions teams and really sort of helping us work with one another to meet our goals. I think it could be interesting for people to understand a little bit more about where College Greenlight sits in this whole ecosystem. So do you wanna tell the listeners a little bit more about what you guys do to help us all? [chuckle]

0:30:46.4 JS: Yeah, I think it's playing that bridge role is definitely it. I think we see ourselves and we function as a conduit really between our CBO and school partners and admission teams for the many, many places where there isn't a connection yet. We want to create and strengthen one so that those can exist independently. We do that in a bunch of different ways, kind of three main ones are by offering events, real-time live events, roundtables for CBO leaders and admissions teams to connect live with one another, usually around a theme. And that can be really helpful to building those lasting connections. We provide a lot of training for our college admission team partners to help them really think about how to effectively engage with CBOs and with underserved students most effectively. And then finally, we publish a bunch of different comprehensive lists and articles, advising information and professional development type of resources for our CBO community, including things that we're really known for like our fly-in program list that a lot of our CBO partners use to learn about opportunities on college campuses.

0:32:09.0 JS: The thing we've been doing at College Greenlight most recently in the past year is Greenlight Match, which has been on the podcast before. So hopefully some people have listened to that episode. But for those of you who haven't yet, Greenlight Match is our new initiative to reduce barriers and improve the college admissions process and really to increase more access for first-generation and lower income students. Greenlight Match involves CBOs helping their students to build an online profile. And then those profiles are anonymized and are reviewed by colleges and universities. Colleges make offers and so students receive those real offers of admission and financial aid to increase really what's on their list and the breadth of schools that any student or CBO is considering. Jordan, I know New York is one of the, I guess, seven total areas that we're working on Greenlight Match. I know you all piloted a small version of it this fall. Can you tell us really quickly about your experience?

0:33:28.5 JW: Yeah, absolutely. I think our team was so excited to pilot this with you all and was excited to be included because I think that there's such an incredible mission alignment there in terms of kind of this like flipping the script on the college application piece. It's so aligned with our goals and our sort of vision for a more equitable higher education system. And so we were just really excited and thrilled to be a part of it and try and help you guys build this innovation. I think we had a small number of students who participated this year just so we could kind of understand the process and make sure that we really understood how it worked. As you guys scale, hopefully we can take it to other places too. And I think that our team had a really great experience with the staff. I think we were really excited to see students getting admissions offers earlier. I think especially for the students we serve, we can often find that students maybe thought like, oh, maybe I'm not gonna go to college, I don't know. Or they're facing some hurdles to get there and to get an offer really early in the process is actually this sort of like uplifting, encouraging, like, oh, wait a minute, like someone wants me.

0:34:45.5 JW: I could really make this happen for myself. It's a real motivator. So I think we saw some of that happening and we're excited to see it. So yeah, I think there's a ton of promise in this innovation that you guys are spearheading and we're excited to see where it goes.

0:35:01.6 JS: Jordan, I know there's so much more we could talk about today, but I do wanna be respectful of your time and our listeners' time. Maybe we'll have to do a part two of this on another occasion. Just to recap and wrap us up here, can you give us your top recommendations for admissions teams to take away? In particular, I think it'd be really helpful if you could kind of do two sides of this. What would you wanna tell a senior enrollment leader who manages the recruitment or communications team? And then what would you wanna tell a recruiter whose day-to-day work brings them into contact with CBOs? What should they take away from the conversation?

0:35:47.3 JW: Yeah, I think this is a great question and I might start maybe... I'll start with senior leaders. And I think my advice is just like policy, policy, policy, more policy, and just like analyzing and understanding what is guiding your office. I know people are doing that all the time, but like some of the questions that I would encourage people to think about is like, do your recruiters have the latitude that they need to differentiate how they're working with CBOs? Do your admissions folks have reasonable enough workloads where they can get ongoing training so that they really become fluent and understand what it means to work with CBOs in an inclusive and a culturally responsive way? Are you training your staff to have transactional interactions or are you setting them up with the policies that they need so that they can actually build genuine relationships that empower CBOs to become your very best advocates? Are you leveraging cross-campus collaborations that can help you build trust with your CBO partners and really create positive experiences for students with a wide range of nuanced identities?

0:36:58.4 JW: So I think really my advice there is just as you consider all of the different systems, structures, policies that make your office run, are you thinking about those things? And then for the people who are kind of on the ground, the recruiters and admission officers, I would actually mostly encourage you to get connected to convening spaces where community-based organizations are. I think that it's in those spaces where I always learned so much and I think they're also the places where you can really build the relationships that you need to sustain this work for the long run and to help really meet our mutual goals of helping kids flourish on campuses that are a great fit for them. So just like a few examples of those places might be like NACAC's Guiding the Way to Inclusion Conference. I think that is a really mission aligned one. The National College Attainment Network, NCAN, is a great one, staying connected to College Greenlight. And then of course like local organizations. We mentioned this before how important it is to not miss out on smaller orgs because you're staying in the national space.

0:38:05.8 JW: So there's things like the Philadelphia College Prep Roundtable in Philadelphia. In New York there's the College Access Consortium of New York, CACNY. And there's a ton of places like this. There's like local NCANs, there's local ACACs. And I think we gave you a bunch of information today that there's no way to sort of materialize all of it, but by getting in these relationships and getting in these networks, I think you can really get connected to the conversations where this kind of thinking is sort of a regular rhythm of life and a regular pace of how we collaborate. So that would be my number one advice to kind of on the ground folks. But also if there's something else that sparked more questions or conversations, I'm always glad to be a partner. Let's Get Ready is always glad to be a partner. I'm sure Juli you would say the same. You can find Let's Get Ready on all the socials @LGRforCollege. So we'd love to stay connected with people.

0:39:07.8 JS: Absolutely, thank you so much for all of your insight today, Jordan. And thank you just for taking the time to join us today on Office Hours.

0:39:18.4 JW: Yes, thank you for having me, it's been fun.


0:39:26.7 S1: Thank you for listening. Please join us next week when we share advice on how to build a stronger sense of belonging for Black and Latino male students on your campus. Until then, thank you for your time.

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