Michael J. Carter grew up attending school in San Jose, California.His junior year he transferred from private to public school, and discovered very different attitudes toward college between public and private high school students. At private school, most students were preparing for college. Where as friends with solid grades at public school weren’t prepping for college because it didn’t occur to them that they could afford to go.
Upon arriving at Washington University in St. Louis in 2007, Michael designed a pilot study that paired college students with public high school students. With a team of college classmate mentors and faculty support, the pilot team partnered with the nearby Eskridge High School in Wellston, Missouri. The students engaged in an intensive year of no-cost, one-on-one college prep mentoring.
Significantly improving college acceptance rates was the goal of the pilot. And that's exactly what happened. The high school’s four-year-college acceptance rate went from 1 out of 30 the previous year, to 24 out of 27 as a result of the pilot program.
The pilot was a success. But it was only the beginning. Upon completing his bachelor’s degree in 2010, Michael returned to his home state of California and opened the Strive for College headquarters. Over the years, Strive for College has steadily grown its impact throughout the nation.
A major milestone for Strive was the launch of its online mentoring platform. This platform connects high school students with a mentor 'virtually' anytime, anywhere.
Today, Michael is one of the nation’s leading advocates for college accessibility. Strive for College operates nationally and continues to change the face of higher education one qualified high school student at a time.