DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – A college outreach program known as University Crossroads has been active in North Texas high schools for years. Now, the group is moving into a new home on Dallas’ Maple Avenue—making it easier for students to find them and find the help they need to navigate the college maze.
“It’s about creating a whole different mindset, creating a different culture, and being able to serve as a catalyst for change for many generations to come,” says Michele Bobadillo with University Crossroads.
Former graduates of the program agree. Before Liz Cedillo-Pereira became a busy immigration attorney, she was just a girl growing up in Dallas with very big dreams. “Most definitely I had a plan, but a dream is not a plan until you put it in writing.”
So she decided to check out a college outreach program that was just across the street from her high school. “All I had to do was just walk across the street and have access to what I really never had before, which is access to college.”
That outreach program became University Crossroads: a collaboration of some 27 colleges, mainly in Texas. In partnership with local schools and community groups, their single minded mission is getting kids in college. “It’s developing the roadmap: how do I get from here to there?” says Bobadillo.
She adds the program helps students with everything from SAT prep to completing the college applications. “If your parents had had that opportunity and gone through school, they would know the steps necessary. So, we do all of the preparatory steps to get students where they need to be.”
Students like Julio Florez. He’s currently earning his MBA at Texas A & M-Commerce and says students don’t have to navigate the road to college alone.
“If you’re really motivated and you have that vision to getting your degree or specializing in something past high school … the help is there. “
And it has been for many years. “I get teary eyed thinking about what it’s gonna do for kids,” says Cedillo-Pereira.