Why I’m Excited About the Eighth Annual Joyce Ivy College Admissions Symposium and You Should Be, Too

Elizabeth Harlow is a volunteer for the Joyce Ivy Foundation. 

I first learned about the Joyce Ivy Foundation as a brand new admissions officer at Duke University. As Duke’s regional rep for the state of Michigan, I had the great pleasure of participating in the first annual Joyce Ivy College Admissions Symposium in 2012. I’ve been a fan and a volunteer ever since.

The Joyce Ivy Foundation’s multi-pronged approach to its mission of supporting the academic advancement and leadership of midwestern women makes it a unique organization in the college access landscape, and its annual symposium always impresses me with the depth of service-oriented expertise it brings together in one weekend.

Next month will bring the eighth annual Joyce Ivy College Admissions Symposium (JCAS) to Detroit and Ann Arbor on May 17 and 18. It’s not too late to register, and I hope you do!

About JCAS

The two-day program features interactive college admissions and financial aid workshops designed for education professionals, students, and families. Thanks to donor support, participation is free of charge for school counselors, community-based organization leaders, and eligible students.

Sessions on Friday, May 17 will be offered for high school counselors and community-based organization leaders to learn about highly selective admissions, need-based financial aid, and to share best practices in a collaborative setting. Sessions on Saturday, May 18, are designed to help talented female high school sophomores, juniors, and their families learn more about admission to highly selective colleges and the process of applying for financial aid. 

Workshops will be led by admissions and financial aid officers from a sampling of the country’s most selective colleges and universities, as well as experienced college counselors. Returning faculty members include representatives from Princeton University, Amherst College, Wellesley College, Yale University, Johns Hopkins University, and The University of Pennsylvania, among others.

This year’s event will also feature representatives from an assortment of merit scholarship programs with enrichment programming, including the Coca-Cola Scholars Program, Morehead-Cain, the Office of Scholar Programs at Washington University in St. Louis, the Stamps Family Charitable Foundation, and the Robertson Scholars Program.

Past JCAS participant, 2019 Summer Scholar, and Mary Vandewiele Leadership Award Recipient Alejandra Gonzalez attests to what exposure to these resources meant for her this past year: “JCAS helped me understand the college admissions world and my experience as a Joyce Ivy Summer Scholar helped me realize what college meant to me. After Summer College, I looked back at my JCAS notes and knew where I belonged and what I had to offer colleges - I was ready to apply! Without JCAS and my experience as a Summer Scholar, my chances of getting into or even applying to my dream school wouldn’t have existed.”

Expanding Reach

Since 2012, the annual symposium has reached over 400 counselors and educators throughout Michigan and Ohio, as well as over 2,000 students and families. In past years, a few young women have even traveled from as far as North Dakota and Missouri to attend!

We know that even shorter distance regional travel isn’t always feasible for many Joyce Ivy seeks to reach: counselors are busy as the school year hurtles toward its end, and many students lack access to transportation. This year’s JCAS has made it a priority to shift and expand regional accessibility for those further away from Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti, where we have held all symposium events in past years.

The Joyce Ivy Foundation is partnering with University Prep Schools and the Detroit College Access Network (DCAN) to host the Friday counselor event in Detroit, and DCAN will help transport students from Detroit to Ann Arbor for Saturday’s event. Earlier this year, the Joyce Ivy Foundation also piloted its first fall event - the Joyce Ivy College Admissions Workshop - at the University of Detroit Mercy. We’re hopeful to continue this growth and exposure in Detroit.  

How to Register

Counselors and community-based organization leaders interested in attending JCAS on Friday, May 17, and female high school sophomores and juniors interested in attending the program on Saturday, May 18, can register and find more information at www.joyceivyfoundation.org.

On behalf of the volunteer planning team, I hope to see you there!

Author: Elizabeth Harlow, Joyce Ivy Foundation Volunteer
Posted: April 23, 2019


Michigan College Access Network | 200 N Washington Square, Suite 210, Lansing, MI 48933 (map) | (517) 316-1713 Contact Us | Site Map | Terms and Privacy