Young Parents & Higher Education Access

Young parents are a group of students who are often not supported with the right resources to attain higher education. They have unique circumstances that set them apart from traditional students that require extra information in their mentoring. 

Statistics for Teen Parents

  • 40% complete high school (compared to 90% of non-parent students)
  • 1.5% college degree completion by age 30
  • 2/3 live in poverty and their children are 9 times more likely to not graduate and live in poverty themselves

Special Circumstances

  • Obtaining and paying for childcare
  • Lack of resources
  • Depression and Post Partum Depression
  • Limited support systems
  • Parenting/studying conflicts

Our goal

  • To provide a safe and relatable mentoring experience by having mentors who have been young/teen parents and are in college or have graduated college
  • Help young parents navigate and enroll in assistance programs, FAFSA, Child Support, and college resources
  • Maintain high school graduation goals and enroll in college

Being a teen/young parent has many challenges that require extra support and understanding. Dream Project acknowledges this and strives to make sure you get the help you need to succeed in school and outside of school. Many young parents find going to college impossible or a dream. We want to assist you in finding the resources that will make college a reality.

Since you have or are going to have a child, you are automatically an independent student on FAFSA, which opens up Federal Pell Grants, university/state grants, and Stafford loans. In most cases your expected family contribution will be $0. This means that your chosen school will likely be able to fully fund your education with little to no out of pocket expenses for you. Many campuses have family housing or can assist you in finding housing within your budget. We can help you navigate Washington’s DSHS website to apply for healthcare assistance, food programs, childcare subsidies, and more. College is within your reach. Let us help you grab it!

Resources

Follow up

Are you a mentee in this situation, or are you a mentor who is supporting a young parent in accessing higher education? Contact our Young Parent Lead Mentor, Kathryn DeBenedetto, for further questions, mentoring, and support.

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