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ASU alumni inspire Phoenix area youth at career event

'Above and Beyond' sparks career interests, academic awareness


May 10, 2017

More than 200 third, fourth and fifth grade students participated in a career event at Laveen Elementary School called “Above and Beyond.” The goal of the event, hosted by Access ASU, was to get these students thinking about their career interests and spark academic awareness at an early age.

"We are going ‘Above and Beyond’ promoting college prep so these students can have the tools they need to succeed and thrive later in life,” said Tenecia Placide, Access ASU AmeriCorp Outreach Coordinator. Above and Beyond youth career event Students try to outbid each other for characteristics they believe best define them during Tuesday’s Above and Beyond event at Laveen Elementary. Download Full Image

Arizona State University alumni volunteered to speak to groups of the elementary students about a time in their life when they had to find the strength to persevere.

“To have someone who went to college and found success come in, besides their teachers, and say, ‘This is where I was, this was my path, and now this is where I am’ is so important.” said Robert Caplinger, Laveen Elementary principal .

The alumni also engaged with students in a variety of hands-on activities demonstrated how they find success in each of their careers by following their dreams. They also worked with the students of Hawk Nation to understand how to face personal fears and to overcome challenges they may encounter.

“The students need to be able to look forward and learn from role models how they’ve been successful. Most of our students come from families who didn’t go to college, so there’s nobody at home telling them how they can make it to college,” Caplinger said.

kids sitting on lawn raising hands
A group of Laveen Elementary students volunteer to share a fear they had to overcome during Tuesday’s Above and Beyond event.

Nearly three-quarters of the Laveen Elementary student body is eligible for free or reduced lunch and more than half identify as Hispanic.

“It’s never too early to start talking to students about their future. Students asked great questions of our ASU alumni working in various fields including engineering, psychology and the law,” said Sylvia Symonds, vice president of educational outreach at ASU.

“Laveen Elementary is full of Future Sun Devils and we are proud to help students begin to explore college and career.”

Written by Will Argeros

Sun Devil Athletics records highest all-time Academic Progress Rate


May 10, 2017

Arizona State University recorded the department's highest four-year Academic Progress Rate (APR) average of 991 over a four-year period (2012–2013 through 2015–2016) the NCAA announced Wednesday. ASU's APR average for all sports is second in the Pac-12 only to Stanford. 

ASU's single year overall APR score for 2015-16 is also an all-time high (990).  graduate looking at graduation balloons launched during convocation Download Full Image

"Since the institution of the APR program by the NCAA, we've seen continuous improvement culminating in our highest score to date," said Vice President for University Athletics Ray Anderson. "This is a direct result of the hard work of our Office of Student-Athlete Development as well as our coaches, staff, faculty, and sport administrators. We, as a department, are all working together to give our student-athletes the best opportunities to succeed both in competition and in the classroom." 

Read more at thesundevils.com.