Hold Fast to Dreams: A Col­lege Guid­ance Coun­selor, His Stu­dents, and the Vision of a Life Beyond Poverty

  • From the Publisher
May 20, 2015

When Joshua Steck­el left his job as col­lege coun­selor at an elite pri­vate school for a pub­lic high school in Brook­lyn, he dis­cov­ered that for low-income stu­dents, the com­pet­i­tive game of col­lege admis­sions has dif­fer­ent rules and much high­er stakes. In a riv­et­ing work of nar­ra­tive non­fic­tion, Hold Fast to Dreams fol­lows the chal­lenges and tri­umphs of ten of Josh’s stu­dents get­ting to and through col­lege. Mike lives in a home­less shel­ter, car­ing for his broth­ers while his moth­er bat­tles can­cer; Nkese defies low expec­ta­tions to become a cam­pus leader at Bates Col­lege; Ash­ley is accept­ed to Williams Col­lege but decides she can bet­ter pur­sue her goals — and stay clos­er to her moth­er — at a com­mu­ni­ty col­lege in Man­hat­tan. Through their sto­ries — and Josh’s—Hold Fast to Dreams offers a grip­ping por­trait of what it takes to over­come bar­ri­ers to high­er edu­ca­tion and make good on its promise of oppor­tu­ni­ty. This book will change the way you think about the mean­ing and val­ue of col­lege. A must-read for all who care about the right to edu­ca­tion in America.

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