UNION, NJ (May 2, 2017) — Jumpstart was recently featured in Kean University’s campus newspaper, The Cougar’s Byte, highlighting the success the Jumpstart site has had with recruitment numbers and campus involvement at Jumpstart-hosted events. This year, the program became a “super site” as 80 AmeriCorps members were recruited, including 60 new members. Not only do the children served in the Elizabeth area benefit from the program, but the college Corps members who volunteer are also given the opportunity to make a difference in their community and on campus. The success of the program has led to greater campus involvement, with 100 additional Kean student volunteers participating in other program-led events such as, Jumpstart’s national Read for the Record campaign, a Thanksgiving family event, and Read Across America Day.
Jumpstart works in low-income urban early childhood centers across 14 states and the District of Columbia, helping prepare 4-year-olds for kindergarten. The vast majority of its nearly 4,000 volunteers are college students. And each year, they get about 300 hours of hands-on experience in the classroom and another 40 hours of additional training specific to language and literacy in early childhood education.
“During the next school year, I hope to continue building more strong relationships and partnerships with Kean students, faculty and staff, and in the community with educators and organizations,” Site manager Gina Miseo said.
Colleges across the country have turned to partnerships like Kean University’s with Jumpstart to offer their students more experiential learning opportunities. In addition to improving the quality of instruction when students bring that experience back to the classroom, colleges have looked to these partnerships as a way to increase student competitiveness in the job market.