Introducing Our New PartnershipTake Stock in Children, Florida State College at Jacksonville and Goodwill Industries of North Florida partner to advance postsecondary education opportunities for Jacksonville’s under-served populations.
An unprecedented collaboration was recently finalized that will increase opportunities in post-secondary education for low-income students in Duval County. Goodwill Industries of Northeast Florida, Florida State College at Jacksonville (FSCJ) and Take Stock in Children (TSIC) – all with proven history of impacting the lives of under-served, under-developed populations in the Jacksonville area – have officially joined forces.
The common denominator for these organizations is that within the scope of their separate missions and visions, each is an advocate for, or provides, postsecondary avenues and opportunities for individuals who want to advance into higher paying employment and more stable economic positions. Each agency values the expertise of the others and understands how the combination of the three provides a safety net of services that completes the cycle of transformative education and employment for those in the community with the greatest needs.
Take Stock in Children has proven success graduating students from high school, however college graduation rates did not tell the same story. The transition into post-secondary education is by far the most difficult transition for low-income students. With a greater focus on college readiness and extending case-management into the first two years at FSCJ, Take Stock in Children made the commitment to not just see students to college but through college, ensuring the scholarship investment pays off, ultimately changing the Take Stock in Children mission statement from “high school dropout prevention” to “workforce and career readiness.”
Since 1995, Goodwill Industries of North Florida has used much of its revenue to make a significant economic impact through their six Job Junction sites. In 2013, Goodwill Job Junctions assisted 12,500 individuals in securing employment in North Florida. Most of these jobs, however, are entry level with wages that are not family sustainable. Goodwill has committed to investing in programs that provide access to post-secondary education for low-income and underserved populations to elevate the number of individuals who have a marketable skill and can earn higher wages. Goodwill looks to provide sustainable funding to the TSIC Duval program. Take Stock is the first of two college access programs that Goodwill will fund creating a holistic approach that supports the entire family.
Goodwill has matched the Take Stock in Children DOE operational dollars for the TSIC Duval program. In addition, Goodwill has pledged administrative support, office space, IT and marketing support. The integrity of the Take Stock n Children brand does not change; branding, key performance indicators and monitoring are still implemented by the TSIC state office.
Florida State College at Jacksonville provides the greatest avenue for success for the majority of TSIC scholars. Take Stock in Children will continue to partner with FSCJ Student Recruitment to monitor current students as well as produce effective workshops and opportunities for successful transition and first year success.
In order to make a greater and lasting change in the local economy, the opportunities for low-income individuals to achieve postsecondary education must be paramount. The aligned mission statements of Goodwill Industries of North Florida, TSIC Duval and Florida State College at Jacksonville, along with their years of expertise, offer a positive and collaborative approach to enhance this effort.