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VIDEO: Student Success: Measured in Numbers, Felt in the Heart

27 Jan 2015 | Kelem Butts

Tagged: Aspire Mentoring Academy, Possibilities, Aspire,

Communities In Schools (CIS) does amazing work, but you don’t have to take my word for it. They have the numbers to show their success: Every $1.00 invested in CIS returns $11.60 to society. These numbers give me confidence that our investment will yield positive returns. Yet it’s not the numbers alone that make me proud of our support for CIS, it’s the real stories of success from students who have benefited from the program.

I always knew that CIS made a difference, but it really hit home when this young woman, while fighting back tears of joy attributed her success to her site coordinator at CIS, a caring adult who believed in her.

When I was at the 2014 Grad Nation Summit, I attended a session on Integrated Student Services, CIS’s model of supporting students within and beyond school walls. The session featured a CIS alumna from Houston, TX who was a junior at Howard University in Washington, D.C. at the time. She spoke eloquently about her struggles in high school and how she thought she’d never amount to anything in life. That was before she connected with CIS. She’s now on track to graduate college and plans to attend law school in the future. I always knew that CIS made a difference, but it really hit home when this young woman, while fighting back tears of joy attributed her success to her site coordinator at CIS, a caring adult who believed in her.

The video below captures the essence and impact of what CIS and their site coordinators do for our young people every day. They provide strong support to those who may not have a caring adult to guide them through those challenging years. Watch current student Trevor and program alumnus Cory show us the immediate and long-term effects of CIS’s support. As Cory says, “[CIS] is still shaping me. It’s still developing me as a person.”

To learn more about how to get involved with Communities In Schools, visit their website.

About the Author

Kelem Butts

AT&T - Director of Charitable Operations

Kelem_Butts

Kelem oversees the operation of AT&T's educational contribution programs, including AT&T's signature initiative, AT&T Aspire. This $350 million investment aims to help more students graduate from high school ready for careers and college.

Prior to this role, Kelem worked in the Sustainability Operations group at AT&T and in product management. He has been with AT&T for 14 years. Before joining AT&T, Kelem spent ten years as a sales professional with Procter & Gamble, Abbott Labs, and Mallinckrodt.

Kelem earned his BA from Wesleyan University and his MBA from the University of Texas at Dallas. He enjoys spending time with his girlfriend, their two bulldogs, reading, and watching football.

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