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Bloomfield College Challenges NJ High Schools to Increase Access to Higher Ed

Bloomfield College at Bloomfield High School

By Alicia Cook

On October 18, members of Bloomfield College, including College mascot, Deacon, visited Bloomfield High School to announce to its key members the launch of a statewide contest with Raise.me, a scholarship platform that awards scholarships to students throughout their high school career.

“The rules of the contest are simple,” said Adam Castro, Bloomfield College Vice President for Enrollment Management. “Your high school will earn points each time a student or educator creates a Raise.me account. The school that earns the highest number of points across the state by Friday, April 7 will win a Raise.me party at their school.”

Sharing Bloomfield College’s mission, Raise.me is focused on expanding access to higher education, especially among low income and first generation students.  Rather than waiting until the end of high school to earn scholarships, which is often too late to impact a student's college ambitions or choices, Raise.me enables students to earn scholarships throughout high school, starting as early as 9th grade, for doing all the things that best prepare them to succeed, whether that’s getting good grades, volunteering in the community, or joining an extracurricular.

Regardless of the contest’s outcome, all students involved will be building a pathway to college, earning scholarship dollars immediately.

For example, starting as early as 9th grade, students can earn:

  • $1,000 for getting an A, per course
  • $1,500 for a leadership role in a sport
  • $2,500 for every AP or IB course
  • $3,000 for taking 2+ years of a foreign language
  • $4,000 for a college visit

Leading up to the contest announcement, 436 Bloomfield High School students were active users on Raise.me and had already begun earning money towards a Bloomfield College education. This already totaled in approximately 2 million dollars over the course of four years in scholarship funds, Castro calculated.

“The Bloomfield High School community is excited to partner with Bloomfield College on the Raise.me scholarship platform,” said Christopher Jennings, Bloomfield High School Principal. “Providing students opportunities to earn scholarship money for exceling in school and being involved in their community allows students to see tangible results of their hard work.  I am excited to continue to spread the word about Raise.me to all of our students and their parents so as many people as possible may take advantage of this unique opportunity.” 

Also in attendance were Bloomfield High School’s cheerleaders and tenth grade student Emmanuel Odekunle, an exceptional student already earning money towards college on Raise.me.

“College is a constant speculation and in some cases the cause of stress that stems from the anxiety of paying high tuition bills,” expressed Odekunle. “However, Raise.me is remarkably helpful as it presents students with a diverse number of possibilities to earn money. It helps students like me effectively save for college.”

Bloomfield College was the first college in New Jersey to partner with Raise.me.

“Year after year I hear from students and parents that they are not being given enough time to make an informed college decision because scholarship decisions weren’t received until mid-way through their senior year,” said Castro. “Raise.me is a game changer. I now encourage every student to create a Raise.me profile right when they begin high school.”