Local High-Potential Students From Economically-Disadvantaged Environments Graduate Successfully Complete Five-Year Leadership Program
Presenting sponsor GDF SUEZ is proud to announce that X C5 Georgia students will graduate the five-year leadership program Thursday, May 12. The commencement ceremony will be held in the Goizueta Auditorium at the Coca-Cola Company Headquarters. C5 Georgia students will emcee the event and Genevieve Bos, global entrepreneur and founder of Pink Magazine, will give the keynote address.
Of the Class of 2011, 23 students have been accepted to 49 colleges, to date, despite low graduation rates in many Atlanta high schools. Some Atlanta schools have graduation rates as low as 44 percent.
To compound the challenges many of these students have faced, growing up in the Atlanta Public School System battling to maintain its accredidation, young people from low income homes have a drop-out rate six times higher than that of higher income students. All C5 Georgia students come from homes with $10,000 of annual income per household member.
These students; however, are not only graduating high school and receiving college acceptance letters, but collectively they have earned $X in college scholarships. Several students have also earned full-scholarships to institutions such as Stanford University, Brandeis University, the U. S. Military Acadmeny (West Point) and the University of Florida.
As graduation approaches, Executive Director, Jeff Cohen reflects on the accomplishments of the Class of 2011 saying, “We are extremely proud of our Medallion students’ accomplishments over the past five years. In the final weeks leading up to their graduation, we are looking forward to the culmination of these students’ community outreach efforts with their ‘Medallion Projects.’”
Recently three students completed their “Medallion Project,” which addressed the issue of teen pregnancy by hosting a panel discussion. The event was supported by faculty and staff and the cafeteria was filled with fellow students. The panel featured teenage parents at Cross Keys High School. The project generated so much interest that the C5 Georgia students in charge of the project have been asked to present their project again for another audience.
When GDF SUEZ spokesperson, Suzanne Childre, was asked about GDF SUEZ’s decision to support this year’s graduation she responded saying, “GDF SUEZ commits to solidarity
and social integration by helping children in need and associations advocating the social integration of young people in difficulty. We have chosen to partner with C5 Georgia because it is a prime example of an organization that is making a difference in the lives, careers and communities of bright young people growing up in economically-disadvantaged environments.”
C5 Georgia Director of Development Rebecca DeYarman said of GDF SUEZ’s involvement, “GDF SUEZ’s continued support over the years has made events like Graduation 2011 possible. The company shares our commitment to serving high-potential students in need of our support. Our board, staff and students are all greatly appreciative of their involvement.”