In addition to working to earn a bachelor of science in psychology and Spanish, Jessica L. Geyer, Douglassville, Pa., is helping to encourage other, younger students to enroll in college as well through the Lebanon Valley Education Partnership (LVEP).
Started in 1989, LVEP is a joint program between Lebanon Valley College and the Lebanon School District to financially and academically support bright students in city schools who might not otherwise be able to attend college. LVC Chaplain Paul Fullmer, who oversees the LVEP mentorship program, stated that 37 LVC students currently serve as mentors. “My work is very minor compared to what these individual mentors do,” said Fullmer. “They give up their Friday nights, and they look forward to seeing their students.”
To facilitate a successful transition to college, Geyer and the other LVC student volunteers serve as mentors at Friday evening activities held throughout the year. For each meeting, student leaders coordinate a 20-minute “College Focus” sessions in which mentees learn about life in higher education. After the session, the group shares dinner at the College before participating together in fun group activities such bowling, ice skating, or a game of college athletics. Mentors and mentees stay in-touch between meetings via email, text message and video chats.
In 2013, five high school students from the LVEP program enrolled at LVC to bring the total number of LVEP Scholars currently studying at the College to 26. Fullmer describes this total as high. “We encourage their dream to attend college somewhere,” he stressed. “Sometimes it’s somewhere else, and that’s okay. We’re making sure they know they have the opportunity to go to college.”
Geyer is a graduate of Daniel Boone Junior Senior High School.
Lebanon Valley College(R) in Annville, Pa., welcomes 1,648 full-time undergraduates studying more than 30 challenging and sophisticated majors, as well as customized self-designed majors. Founded in 1866, LVC has graduate programs in physical therapy, business, music education, and science education. The College offers automatic scholarships worth up to half tuition for students graduating in the top 30 percent of their class. On the web at www.lvc.edu.
Annville is 15 minutes east of Hershey and 35 minutes east of Harrisburg; Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., and Baltimore are within two hours.