CPS high school seniors spend strike day at college fair

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Many Chicago Public Schools high school seniors are stressing over the college application process during the 2019 teachers strike, so on the fourth school day out of class some seniors interviewed with college admissions counselors to stay ahead of the process.

"Knowing my top colleges are done and I don't have to worry about the strike coming into play, that is so amazing, it makes me feel calm," said Armani Washington, senior at Lane Tech High School.

Washington is part of the Chicago Scholars program, which gives low income and/or first generation students a leg up on the college application process. Tuesday students spent their strike day at Navy Pier interviewing with college admission staff.

"I'm a bit nervous, but I will stay true to myself and make sure I answer all the questions fully," said Aryss Anderson, senior at Sarah E. Goode High School.

"They are among the first in the nation to be accepted to college and before November 1 they are going to walk out with an acceptance letter," said Dominique Jordan Turner, Chicago Scholars CEO.

Washington walked out with an acceptance letter from Butler University, but there are more universities on her list, including Duke and Yale.

"I would not have thought of being a girl from the West Side of Chicago about to interview with these amazing colleges, then I got in and said 'What,'" she said.

Whitney Young senior Kiara Vega got an acceptance letter from Ohio's Miami University, and said the Chicago Scholar college fair opportunity forced her to finish all her applications early. Vega is now helping other classmates make November 1 deadlines, since teachers are not available.

"Everyone is coming to me and saying essays I need help, I'm glad I have this chance to help others, although they are not in the program," she said.

November 1 is the most common deadline for early admissions. For the students in the Chicago Scholar program, not only were they given acceptance letters today, scholarships were awarded to many kids as well. There are close to 1,000 kids in the program. The majority are CPS students.
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