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Program Updates

Girl on Zoom Showing Project

Sharing the Tools for Success

Winter/Spring ​2021 Programming

  • Friday Movie Night--facilitated by student teacher and staff member, Adyson, and our volunteer, Amand--is a program in which the participants virtually gather every Friday night to watch and discuss a movie together. Favorite movies of the girls include Little Women and To All the Boys I Loved Before.
  • Every Wednesday, ECC staff members Adyson, Isabel, and Anna host an art session in which the girls are virtually guided through an art project and encouraged to engage with each other. During this hour, girls practice engagement skills and learn mindfulness techniques all while doing art.
  • Each Penedo girl has one or more tutoring sessions weekly in which they practice their academic skills, prepare for exams, and work on homework with ECC staff and DePaul University student volunteers.

Fall 2020 Programming

  • With a strengthened partnership with Goudy Middle School teachers, the Penedo Program now receives direct curriculum and content from the participants’ middle school teachers. Now, the College’s student teachers are better able to prepare lessons for the tutoring sessions.
  • “BOLT,” a special series facilitated by alumna Dr. Suzanne Sheey (MED ’98, EDD ’15) instructed how to reach goals and eliminate self-defeating thoughts and beliefs.

Summer 2020 Programming

  • The more advanced Penedo participants, now in College, mentored the younger participants in what is called “near peer mentoring”. Advanced members checked in with the younger members on a regular basis, offering support and friendship during the pandemic.
  • A workshop, Tips for the College Search Process, was hosted. Penedo Program college freshmen participated in a panel discussion sharing advice to the rising high school seniors. Practical tips on how to choose a college, the importance of identifying a suitable financial package, and the scholarship search process were discussed.

Spring 2020 Remote Programming

  • In response to the global pandemic, the Program transferred its programming online for the safety of each participant. Faculty began referring their College students to tutor Penedo Program members. Each participant attended at least one tutoring appointment each week, which had a significant effect on their adjustment to and success within their own remote classes during the challenging virtual transition. Many participants attended had a virtual tutoring appointment every day!
  • The Program instituted its special weekly series “Women’s Empowerment and Leadership Program,” a support group that encouraged the members to consider what is important to them and where their voice is honored and nurtured. Middle school, high school, and post-high school graduates attended on a weekly basis.

January 2020 - March 2020

  • Middle school students visited the Education and Counseling Center up to 4 days per week for tutoring, group counseling, one-on-one counseling, and the Penedo Program’s Friday Fun Program--art, music, journaling, and discussion. The safe and inclusive environment for the participants to develop friendships was key. High school students attended 1-2 times per week for tutoring and consultation about college preparation, covering topics such as deciding on a college, evaluating the financial packages, and scholarship research.