Students have been recruited from their local middle schools during their 8th grade. Participating middle schools of the DDCE’s Neighborhood Longhorns Program provides educationally disadvantaged youth with the resources to build a strong academic future. The initiative is designed to help them develop skills in cultural proficiency, entrepreneurship, civic
leadership, team building, and global citizenship.
The first initiative towards sending a group of 9th graders to China was giving them access to a passport. 100 participating students were given free passports! To have the opportunity to study abroad during their freshman year of high school in 2020.
“Providing eighth-graders with passports allows them to see beyond their current situation, dream big and reimagine possibilities for themselves and their communities,” says Devin Walker, director of the Austin Future Leaders Initiative. “Passports are like the gift that keeps on giving.”
After completing the program over the course of the 8th and 9th grade, students will have the opportunity to study abroad in Beijing, China in the summer of 2020. Dovetailing with the DDCE’s undergraduate Maymester course, Social Entrepreneurship in the U.S. and China, the 10-day trip will provide a rich curriculum of experiential learning.
According to a 2017 report from the Institute of International Education, only 10 percent of U.S. college students study abroad and more than 70 percent identify as white. Leonard Moore, vice president for diversity and community engagement, has led each trip over the past six years with the goal of giving students of all racial and economic backgrounds access to study abroad opportunities.
You can give these students a once in a lifetime opportunity! Let's get them to China this summer!