Our goal is to help build a brighter future for the communities of the St. John Valley. Our experience supporting more than 70 rural Maine communities each year has convinced us that the key to a brighter future is founded on the early aspirations of their youth. Solutions will not come from away. Government policy will not solve all their problems. They do not need bandages. The key is to empower the youth of rural Maine to build a brighter future for themselves . . . and for their communities.
Maine College Circle informs and inspires early aspirations. Students won't aspire to what they do not know. Communities won't prosper without aspirations.
All our experience and research in rural communities tells us that students begin to choose their pathway, which often excludes higher education, in 5thand 6thgrades. Our experience tells us that grades 3, 4, 5, and 6 are the pivotal years for student educational aspirations in rural communities.
Since 2012, we have awarded 511 Future of Maine College Aspirations Scholarships to students in grades 3 - 6 in the St. John Valley. A collaboration of businesses, schools, and community members are now working to expand our efforts to inspire and celebrate early effort and aspirations throughout the St. John Valley, as the communities explore new ways to work together to build a brighter future.
Communities often look for solutions elsewhere. Based on our experience talking with and celebrating your students over the past 6+ years, at Madawaska Elementary, Dr. Levesque School, Fort Kent Elementary, Wallagrass Elementary, and Eagle Lake, we are convinced that the best solutions, and the greatest potential for the future, are in your schools today.
Bob Stuart, Director, Maine College Circle