College Night attracts 700; PMHS student explores college options in the U.S. for the first time

College Night attracts 700; PMHS student explores college options in the U.S. for the first time
Posted on 11/18/2015
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Over 700 attendees participated in the annual College Fair Tuesday, Nov. 17 at Deer Park High School-South Campus. The event was a joint effort by Pasadena, Deer Park and La Porte ISDs and First Baptist Christian Academy.

College Night welcomed representatives from 84 colleges and universities, technical and specialty schools and United States military and naval academies including San Jacinto College, University of Houston campuses, Rice, several University of Texas branches, Harvard, Yale, Penn State, and the United States Coast Guard, to name a few.

College Night gives students a chance to connect with representatives at various institutions at one time so they can begin planning the next step in their educational journey. Students also received financial aid information and tips on how to prepare for college.

“This event allows students to speak directly with campus representatives to get information about institutions including admissions criteria, financial aid options and additional items that may not be found online,” Karen McCarley, Pasadena ISD college readiness and counseling director said. “Our district is thrilled to partner with local school districts to provide this opportunity for students interested in exploring post-secondary options.”

This was a first-time experience for Hanan Ali, a sophomore at Pasadena Memorial High School. Ali immigrated from Saudi Arabia last year to take advantage of the educational opportunities in the U.S. and learn about American culture.

“The colleges and universities that students are graduating from in the U.S. are well known worldwide,” Ali said. “You can pursue the same degree in America as other countries but there are more opportunities here after you graduate. I want to learn why.”

After visiting with numerous representatives, Ali said he was surprised to discover all the quality programs offered in Texas alone and throughout the country.

“This world is progressing so fast that if we do not keep up with the educational opportunities and we do not embrace what is going on around us, we are going to be left behind,” Ali said. “We need events like College Night to increase awareness for students and to ensure the success of this nation.”  

College Night 2015
Pictured: Pasadena Memorial High School's Havan Ali (left) and his friend Adan Aragon.

College Night 2015
Dobie High School eleventh grade student Brandon Flores and his family decided to attend College Night to talk to college representatives about post-secondary opportunities in the criminal justice field.

College Night 2015
Pasadena Memorial High School students Sydnee Alarcon (left) and Carrisa Kissick visit various tables, gathering information. Alarcon will be the first in her family to attend college. 

College Night 2015
College Night attracted about 700 students and representatives from 84 institutions.