Latino Kids Get Help On Their "Road To College"

Latino Kids Get Help On Their "Road To College"

Census studies show the Hispanic population will be the majority in Texas by 2020.

But studies indicate that the graduation rate for Latino college students in the state is 10 percentage points lower than that of white students.

That's why for the very first time the organization Cafe Con Leche has hosted a "Road to College" program over the summer. The program's founder Gonzalo Robles and other educators have been meeting with students here for several days a week. They've been helping young Latinos improve academically, physically and even socially. But the main goal is to get kids who have been indecisive on whether or not they want to go to college to think differently.

"I kind of fell through the school system as a high schooler and I don't want that to happen to these children. They need a voice and they need opportunity, an advocate and they need somebody that cares," said Stephanie Zamora Robles, an instructor for the Road to College program and the vice president of Zavala.

The instructors care so much that they've also been helping the kids family's understand more about the college application process. Robles said filling out all the paperwork can be confusing for anybody, so imagine how difficult it must be for parents who aren't fluid in English.

"We want better for our children, we want them to go to college, we want them to know there's an option. Sometimes it's just that fear of where do I start and sometimes we need somebody to hold our hand and say this is what's available and this is how you do it," said Robles.

Now that the program is on its final week, instructors have noticed a big change in students. In fact, the field trips they've taken to Sheppard's Air Force Base and Midwestern State University actually convinced some of them to go to college.

"Before I came here I didn't think I wanted to go but now that I came here I decided I wanted to be a nurse in the air force," said Adrianna Harris.

And student Ivan Torres said, "We went to MSU and he told us if we play sports we're more likely to get an education. We'll get money and we won't have to pay for it."

The program has received food donations from several businesses in town and even a place for instructors and students to meet.

Tanya De Jesus, Newschannel 6