Campus: CSU, Long Beach -- November 10, 1999

National College Week Starts Nov. 15

California State University, Long Beach President Robert Maxson and outstanding university students will visit local middle schools Monday to encourage preparation for college. The U.S. Department of Education will release a study on college affordability and enrollment.

As part of National College Week, university officials and college students throughout the country will visit their nearby high schools and middle schools next week to tell students about the importance of preparing for higher education.

In Long Beach, visits will include a Nov. 15 stop at Marshall Middle School by Robert C. Maxson, president of California State University, Long Beach. Maxson and former Marshall students now attending CSULB will speak to sixth-graders during an 11:25 a.m. assembly. The school is located at 5870 E. Wardlow Road in Long Beach.

Among the college students visiting Marshall will be two CSULB President's Scholars--high school valedictorians or National Merit Scholars recruited by CSULB from throughout the state.

The visit is timed with the release of "Getting There," a Department of Education report embargoed for Nov. 15. The report includes research that shows: more people are going to college than ever before; who is going to college and who isn't; enrollment records will be broken for years to come; some states are feeling the impact of the baby-boom echo; more high school students are getting serious about taking college prep courses; and students must think about college early. A key determinant of college success is whether students take vigorous courses in middle and high school.

Marshall was chosen for Maxson's visit because it is one of three Long Beach schools benefiting from a new, five-year GEAR UP grant from the federal government. Hamilton Middle School and Jefferson Leadership Academies also are GEAR UP schools. Long Beach Unified is one of 23 California school districts to receive the grants.

The acronym GEAR UP stands for Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs. The grant allows this year's sixth-graders to be followed for five years with specialized curriculum, mentoring and parent involvement efforts focused on preparing students for college.

Hamilton School will hold its College Week assembly at 10:10 a.m. on Nov. 16, and Jefferson will hold its assembly at 7:55 a.m. on Nov. 17. These events also will include visits from Cal State Long Beach students.

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