Broward Education Foundation announced its role as the new backbone organization for Bridge 2 Life, Broward County’s local college access network. In keeping with Florida’s Sail to 60 initiative, Bridge 2 Life’s mission is to increase postsecondary education rates to 60% or more by 2030 and create a college-going culture with the primary focus on minority, first-generation and low-income students.
“Bridge 2 Life is a wonderful addition to Broward Education Foundation and their goals dovetail beautifully with ours,” said Broward Education Foundation CEO Shea Ciriago. “Understanding that no single organization or institution can single-handedly boost a community’s postsecondary educational attainment rate, the addition of Bridge 2 Life to our portfolio of services provided to students in Broward County Public Schools is a welcome addition.”
Founded by Broward County Public Schools and the Children’s Services Council of Broward in 2018, Bridge 2 Life brings together leaders from all sectors of the community to increase college access, enrollment, and completion to meet workforce demands.
Much of Bridge 2 Life’s work focuses on breaking down barriers to attaining a degree. By providing FAFSA guidance, easier access to scholarships, financial aid, and tuition reimbursement, and supporting clear pathways to degree completion, students who thought college was out of reach can get the resources and support they need. Identifying and addressing systemic inequities is another key focus area.
“Closing the equity gap for post-secondary attainment at a systems level, while exploring and piloting interventions to help students in the here and now is very exciting,” Ciriago continued. “Bridge 2 Life provides more opportunities for community leaders to help identify and advocate for innovative approaches and solutions to help our youth and that is at the core of our mission at Broward Education Foundation.”
Bridge 2 Life is led by Colleen Lockwood, a longstanding community leader and advocate for youth who said “We are grateful to Sheila Smith and her team at 211 Broward for acting as B2L’s backbone organization for the last 2 ½ years. Bridge 2 Life is delighted to be aligning with the mission and vision of Broward Education Foundation.”
About Broward Education Foundation
Broward Education Foundation is the only 501(c)3 charitable organization solely dedicated to supporting Broward County Public Schools and serves as a catalyst for educational excellence by providing teacher grants to fund the development of innovative curriculum that advances Pre-K-12 achievement; vitally needed school supplies for Title I school students, and scholarships for qualified high school seniors. Established in 1983, the non-profit Broward Education Foundation contributes more than $3 million to Broward County Public Schools annually. Most recently, and responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, the foundation provided students and teachers with PPE and supplies valued at an additional $2 million. In 2018, responding to the Stoneman Douglas High School tragedy, Broward Education Foundation initiated a GoFundMe campaign, established the official Stoneman Douglas Victims’ Fund, and raised $10.5M for victims’ families, survivors, and those impacted. Broward Education Foundation is proven agile, adept, and responsive to shifting needs in education and our community. For more information, sit browardedfoundation.org, email BEFInfo@browardschools.com, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn.
ABOUT BRIDGE 2 LIFE
Founded in 2018, Bridge 2 Life, Broward County’s local college access network is committed to the belief that innovations in education should affect deep change in practice, be sustained over time, cultivate a shared sense of ownership among local community members, and involve fundamental systems change. Additionally, the voices, stories, expertise, & knowledge of those most impacted will be part of leading, setting priorities, creating policy agendas, shifting narrative, & taking collective action to improve outcomes.