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March 4, 2008
Living Up To Its Motto of “Supporting Your Success” AIU Helps Teens Achieve the Dream of a College Degree
Atlanta, GA, March 4, 2008 – American InterContinental University (AIU) is pleased to announce its partnership with Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS). Perfectly matching AIU’s goal of providing a high-quality career-focused education to students who otherwise might not have the opportunity, with BBBS’ experience at improving the lives of children, the partnership is destined for success.
AIU has made a financial commitment to Big Brothers Big Sisters to help fund several initiatives, and has also committed to 20 full-ride bachelor degree scholarships that are valued at as much as $1.2 million. Most promising, though, is the chance to further the Mentoring Towards College (MTC) initiative. MTC is a program that identifies children who have shown that, with a little help, they have the capacity to be successful university students.
Mentoring Towards College pairs teens, or the “Littles,” who have demonstrated a capacity and the motivation to succeed, with adults, or the “Bigs.” And most of the Bigs in the program have degrees themselves, so they are well-positioned to understand what challenges await the Littles. Recognizing that the first year or so of college can be trying even for gifted students from stable home environments, the mentors selected for the MTC program have committed to staying with their mentees through at least one year of college study.
State of the World's Children, a report published by UNICEF, documents that the way to ensure better-educated children is to also educate others in their support structure – especially mothers. Recognizing that children in the Big Brothers Big Sisters program often don’t have the financial means to attend college, a home life that’s conducive to a climb up the higher education ladder, or a family history of experience with education beyond high school, the leadership teams at AIU and BBBS applied a little “outside the box” thinking. Consequently, scholarships will be available to motivated high school students in the MTC program and to parents of children in the program. The scholarships will be awarded for study at AIU’s on-ground campuses and its online campus.
Dr. George Miller, AIU’s Chief Executive Officer, commented, “this is a partnership between two great institutions that both have missions to improve the lives of people who are not always on the receiving end of opportunity. We have great expectations for the MTC program and we are grateful for the opportunity to participate. I, for one, cannot wait to follow the lives of the Littles who go through the mentoring process and on to attend American InterContinental University.
Janice McKenzie Crayton, President and CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metro Atlanta says, “This partnership speaks to American InterContinental University's commitment to make college accessible to those who would not ordinarily have the opportunity. The MTC program is gaining momentum from the community and we believe it will have a profound impact on the lives of our Littles.”
In 1904, a young New York City court clerk named Ernest Coulter, seeing more and more boys come through his courtroom, recognized that caring adults could help many of these kids stay out of trouble, and he set out to find volunteers. That launched the Big Brothers movement. At around the same time, members of a group called Ladies of Charity were befriending girls who had come through the New York Children’s Court. That group would later become Catholic Big Sisters. Both of these groups worked independently until 1977, when Big Brothers of America and Big Sisters International joined forces. More than a century later, Big Brothers Big Sisters remains true to the founders’ original vision of bringing caring mentors into the lives of children and operates in all 50 states and 35 countries around the world.
American InterContinental University, on the other hand, was founded in Europe in 1970 on the premise that universities should transcend the bounds of the traditional, theoretical approach to education and provide students with a curriculum designed to prepare them well for successful, productive careers in the real world. For many years, AIU has offered this innovative approach to higher education at all of its campuses. Today, AIU is based in Atlanta, Georgia and has six campuses in the United States and England, as well as one of the largest and most successful internet-based online campuses in the world.
American InterContinental University, awards Associate, Bachelor’s, and Master’s degrees in a variety of disciplines. The AIU network includes seven campuses: AIU Buckhead (Atlanta, GA); AIU Dunwoody (GA); AIU South Florida (Weston, FL); AIU Los Angeles (CA), AIU Houston (TX), AIU London (England); and AIU Online (based in Illinois). For additional information about AIU, please visit www.aiuniv.edu and for more information about AIU Online, visit www.aiuonline.edu. AIU is a member of the Career Education Corporation (NASDAQ:CECO) network of universities, colleges and schools.
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metro Atlanta (BBBS) is the southeast's leading youth development organization. Passionately committed to transforming the lives of children through professionally supported, one-to-one mentoring relationships with caring, well-trained volunteers. BBBS is a private, nonprofit organization and an affiliate of Big Brothers Big Sisters of America. For more information on Big Brothers Big Sisters national organization, visit www.bbbs.org and for more information on the Metro Atlanta chapter, visit www.bbbsatl.org.