A UT student was recently honored as an "Outstanding Kaptain" in the campus' first Project GRAD program.
Scott Campbell, a senior majoring in political science and minoring in history and secondary education, heard about Project GRAD through a friend. He decided to apply to be a Kaptain, or counselor for the program.
He found out that while the job was very rewarding it took up a lot of time.
"Every morning we'd make sure they got up and had breakfast," Campbell said. "We'd go to their classes with them, help out if the teachers needed us and got to hang out with them in their free time. My favorite part was just playing basketball or guitar with the kids. I loved getting to know them. There are so many amazing kids."
For Campbell, it was basically a full day of work. To immerse the students in college life, they stayed in Clement Hall, ate their meals at Sophie's Place and went to classes on test taking skills and time management techniques, as well as life skills such as money management and power speaking during the day.
Project GRAD is a program that works with public schools to encourage inner-city students to graduate high school and continue their education. As a part of the program, high school students stay on a college campus for two weeks and take classes.
"Project GRAD began 12 years ago in Houston, and it's been in Knoxville for two years," said Tracy McBroom, public relations representative for Project GRAD. It had previously been held on the campus of Pellissippi State Technical Community College."It started in Austin-East Magnet High School and Fulton High School and now involves the elementary and middle schools that feed into the two high schools."
Campbell now plans to teach after graduation.
"After doing Project GRAD, I hope to do my teaching study at Fulton High School," Campbell said. "I would enjoy working with some of the kids I met through Project GRAD, as well as the other students."