October 21, 2010
producer Nick Cannon visited St. John’s University’s GEAR UP
Program at Long Island City (LIC) High School to kick off his “16
Summers Education Celebration Tour” on October 15.
More than 300 GEAR UP seniors took part in the event that
included performances by artists from NCredible Entertainment
and motivational talks by Cannon’s Father, James, as well as the
Cannon’s visit was the first stop in a 46-state tour that is
designed to promote the importance of students’ pursing their
dreams of graduating from college and will reach over 1.5 million
students across the country.
“Senior year is a critical year for our students” said Yvette
Morgan, GEAR UP Project Co-Director. “Not only will they be
graduating from high school, but they will also be applying for
college admission for the fall of 2011. Nick Cannon’s message
encouraged them to become intrinsically motivated and goal-oriented
at this crucial time in their academic careers.”
St. John’s GEAR UP partnership with LIC High School focuses on
students’ academic achievement, college awareness and preparation,
and parents’ college knowledge. The partnership has seen much
success in raising student achievement and promoting college
attendance, which is why LIC High School was selected as the site
for this event.
GEAR UP, which stands for Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness
for Undergraduate Programs, was created by the U.S. Department of
Education with the purpose of increasing the number of low-income
students who are prepared to enter and succeed in postsecondary
education. The program offers state and partnership grants to
provide services to poverty stricken middle schools and high
schools. GEAR UP funds may also be used to provide college
scholarships to low-income students.