Meet Education Opens Doors, an organization that equips more than 12,000 middle school students to uncover the importance of school and career readiness during the critical decision-making years. The organization trains middle school teachers and counselors with a college and career readiness program that gives students the skills to know and navigate all of their options.
Through EOD, students primarily from low economic backgrounds and communities of color, go from receiving the national average of 38 minutes of college and career counseling over four years to 900 minutes in just one year.
Stephanie Epps, the Director of Programs at EOD, is motivated by their unfaltering mission focused on students and their futures. “One of the best things about us is the level of investment we have in supporting students with an intentional journey and supporting teachers from empathy,” Stephanie shared.
One of the strengths of the EOD model is their close partnership with classroom teachers. Traditionally, class time is dedicated to completing the Student Guidebook activities. With the school closures during the pandemic, EOD has been hard at work adapting their program for access outside of schools.
Stephanie joined the Together for Tomorrow cohort to help think through the shift into virtual learning environments and to collaborate with other organizations to help elevate each other’s missions.
“Now more than ever, collaboration is important because there is no one solution to everything. It’s about mutual support and problem-solving and that we all make it through to continue to serve our communities.”Stephanie Epps, Education Opens Doors
Through the cohort, Stephanie was able to explore possible failure points of their transition to a digital platform both for students and teachers. One of the discoveries was the platform-fatigue of educators who have been drinking from a virtual firehose. In light of this insight, the EOD team is developing communications and training pieces that speak directly to the pain-points of teachers to help shift their mindset about leveraging the new platform.
Some indicators of the success of these efforts will be the percent of teachers who log on to the new platform and the amount of time that they and their students spend in the platform interacting with the materials each month.
To connect with Education Open Doors, check out their website https://educationopensdoors.org/ or find them on social media at the accounts below:
Facebook: Education Opens Doors