WHY WE CREATED building-U
THERE IS A CLEAR NEED to identify and address factors that most significantly impact the odds of successful outcomes for high school students as they move forward in their present and make plans for their postsecondary future.
INDEPENDENT RESEARCH in both Canada and the US suggests that the biggest factors contributing to successful postsecondary outcomes are:
- awareness of and good information around relevant options
“a key obstacle to getting more high-school graduates enrolled in college is limited information; postsecondary education in the U.S. is “like a big computer with no operating system.”
Alia Wong, Atlantic Monthly. “Where Are All the High School Grads Going?
- self-determined decision-making and planning
“a key obstacle “the activity of planning for life matters more than the specific choices the individual makes. Most career problems of youth arise mainly from a lack of planning skills and lack of information about possibilities” Bryan Hiebert, University of Calgary
AT building-U We provide high school students with free access to different types of resources that allow students to improve their awareness and understanding of relevant postsecondary options. Exploring these resources gives students the information and tools they need to recognize and hone their interests and skills, which enables them to develop the self confidence and autonomy to take charge of their planning and decision-making that will shape their successful postsecondary outcomes.
THING #1 : We provide and continue to build a totally free curated database of easily undiscovered and much-cooler-than-you-might-think resources (education programs, skills-building-service opportunities, and funding options) for US and Canadian high school students. We’ve organized them to be comfortable to browse and understand. Click to access our resources page and select the arm that interests you!
THING #2 : We offer opportunities for high school students to be part of teams that research the resources we feature through our Internship program. In the process, they get the opportunity to work with other students from around the country (and even around the world!), and the time and support to build their own awareness of (and possible uses for!) the resources they research and write about! Click on our High School Internship Program to learn more!
THING #3 : We host our annual $FUN-ding event in November, where we look to raise money for both THING 1 and THING 2, in addition to the scholarship money and prizes that will be awarded to students at $4YT. $FUN-ding 4 Your Thoughts is a 36 hour drop-in-when-you-want FREE and friendly game for high school students from around the world. Students register early and sign in anonymously on the day to virtually visit different business islands, learn more about what they do, participate in optional challenges, and assign free raffle tickets for prizes. Participating businesses determine the number and value of awards for their island and bestow all prizes for their question. It’s essentially the event version of our mission, focused on the same awareness, skills-building, and autonomous decision-making goals of our Resource Database and Internship Programs. Please join in! Registration for 2021 opens soon!
ULTIMATELY, WE THINK THAT how high school students think and how they look at their future are both pretty important. Our mission is to support them with different tools that they can use to effectively help themselves as they decide on and prepare for whatever comes next.