Her family, lacking a tradition of higher education, can't help her seek out a college or encourage her in her quest for help. Her situation is further complicated by a high school that has failed to adequately prepare her for the required entrance exams and college level courses. For thousands of seniors like Shelia, college is a dream that will never be realized. The difficulties of access, expense, and preparation have become more than just obstacles, they have become barriers that have left a college education out of reach. To assure that all students have an equal opportunity for a college degree, the process needs to be made less difficult.The most important tools an incoming college student can possess are attitude and motivation. These are only acquired by years of planning by the family for the student's eventual enrollment. Contacting schools, selecting a proper program, and preparing the student to move away and get an education may not be forthcoming from a family who has never experienced attending college. These students will have difficulty when they are faced with a new environment, new experiences, new cultures, and a lack of adequate expectations. Families that fail to encourage college will produce poorly motivated students that won't be able to develop the attitude necessary to succeed in college.
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Shelia Swanson is a high school senior in a small school in rural Iowa.She has aspirations of going to college and becoming a veterinarian.However,her working mother,a high school dropout,can't afford the expense of her daughter's tuition on her minimum wage job. …
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