Lower School News & Stories
Head of School Dominic A.A. Randolph was at the White House today for the launch of a new social media campaign designed to encourage young people to pursue their education after high school.
Led by First Lady Michelle Obama, the Better Make Room campaign is designed to encourage young people between the ages of 14 and 19, known as Generation Z, to share their stories and find information about how they can realize their goals through education.
"We want to create a space where young people can engage with each other, where they can inspire each other to complete their education beyond high school," Mrs. Obama said at the event.
Riverdale Country School is one of more than 20 partners in the campaign that draws from media, business, and nonprofit groups. The Better Make Room website will provide information on matters such as testing and financial aid, and enable students to share stories about their aspirations in life. The effort is part of Mrs. Obama's Reach Higher initiative, which began two years ago to support President Barack Obama's goal of increasing the number of U.S. college graduates by 2020.
Riverdale is a founding partner with the design firm, IDEO, of The Teachers Guild, a community of teachers nationwide that is designing better solutions for teaching and learning. The Teachers Guild will run a challenge in partnership with Better Make Room in which teachers will create new opportunities for students to further their educations and participate in college-level courses. The ideas generated will be available for any teacher to try in their classroom or school.
"It was amazing to take part in this event," Randolph said. "This is inspired by the First Lady's experience and is also so forward thinking about education and the future of our country."
He noted that the campaign is a natural extension of the missions of Riverdale and The Teachers Guild. "Riverdale aims to prepare all students for university study and to be an inspiration to all schools, teachers, and students," Randolph said. "The Teachers Guild is an amazing new platform that helps teachers "dare to design" solutions to education's most pressing problems. Obviously, college completion and persistence is one of the most significant issues in our nation today. We hope that by partnering with the First Lady, Reach Higher, and Better Make Room that we will be able to make a difference."
Molly McMahon, a program lead at IDEO involved in The Teachers Guild, said: "The Teachers Guild is excited to partner with #bettermakeroom by inviting our teacher designers to encourage their students to set intentions towards their college and career dream. We also commit to running a Collaboration on the Teachers Guild in partnership with Better Make Room, where students and teachers will create new options for expanded pathways to college. The ideas generated will be available for any teacher to try in their classroom or school. Our hope is to fuel the movement of students and teachers working together to help all students fulfill their dreams by putting the power of designing the future in their hands."