Skip to main contentSkip to main content
You have permission to edit this article.
Edit
This content was produced by Brand Ave. Studios. The news and editorial departments of Richmond Times-Dispatch had no role in its creation or display. Brand Ave. Studios connects advertisers with a targeted audience through compelling content programs, from concept to production and distribution. For more information contact sales@brandavestudios.com.
sponsored

An Achievable Dream is a proven educational model of success for its students and alumni

  • Updated
  • 0
An Achievable Dream T2z9mYVB.jpg

Brian McGowan, Ph.D., was taught at an early age that education is the ticket to a fulfilling life.

As a member of the first graduating class in 2001 at An Achievable Dream, a nationally recognized K-12 program in Newport News, Virginia, McGowan’s time at AAD fueled a passion for a career in higher education.

Dr. Brian McGowan

Dr. Brian McGowan

“An Achievable Dream definitely shaped my desire to be a lifelong educator. I was a driven kid who loved to learn new things. I really enjoyed my time in the academic classroom and truly appreciated the cocurricular opportunities offered to me by AAD. The Dream fostered a positive and supportive community where students like myself were encouraged to excel,” McGowan says.

An Achievable Dream, an educational nonprofit, partners with public schools to provide opportunities, resources and exposure to students in traditionally underserved communities in Virginia. Alumni like McGowan have both experienced the benefits of the program and bear witness to the 30-year track record of success since the program’s founding in 1992.

An Achievable Dream dtHlpTtw.jpg

The passion for education instilled at An Achievable Dream pushed McGowan to go on to complete his bachelor’s degree at Old Dominion University, his master’s degree at The Ohio State University and his doctorate of philosophy (Ph.D.) in higher education administration at Indiana University Bloomington. Along the way, he has worked at numerous colleges and universities, helping students engage in and understand the value of participating in meaningful and educationally purposeful cocurricular activities that complement their formal academic classroom experiences.

An Achievable Dream BYUDjDPB.jpg

McGowan is currently an associate professor of education and associate director of the Center for Teaching, Research, and Learning at American University. His research illuminates and centers on the experiences of minority populations and students who are often neglected or overlooked in higher education. He carries many of the things that he learned at An Achievable Dream with him in his career today.

“This may sound cliché, but I would say the ability to dream is what I appreciate the most. AAD exposed me to so many opportunities that I never would have imagined. College tours, tennis lessons at Huntington Park, etiquette dinners, spending time at the YMCA, shadowing a bank teller and the after-school professional development opportunities,” McGowan says. “The list goes on. AAD exposed us to a variety of opportunities that made dreaming beyond our immediate circumstances possible.”

An Achievable Dream 3CAZEp-o.jpg

McGowan’s experience as a Dreamer recently came full circle when he conducted a study with graduates of the program who are now attending college. The study, an American Educational Research Association service project, included assessments of specific features of AAD that played a role in students’ successful matriculation to college and program features that equipped students to persist and succeed in college.

The positive and supportive community that An Achievable Dream provides to all students is one that McGowan intends to pass on to others along the way as well.

An Achievable Dream hqoWwfSi.jpg

“If I could pass one piece of advice to a current Dreamer, it would be to trust the process and stay the course. AAD has a proven track record of graduating students and preparing them to be change agents in our society. Despite challenges you may face at home and/or in school, trust the process and stick with An Achievable Dream,” he says.

Learn more about An Achievable Dream, by visiting achievabledream.org.

AchievableDreamCOLOR_11-2010

This content was produced by Brand Ave. Studios. The news and editorial departments had no role in its creation or display. Brand Ave. Studios connects advertisers with a targeted audience through compelling content programs, from concept to production and distribution. For more information contact sales@brandavestudios.com.
0 Comments

Related to this story

Get up-to-the-minute news sent straight to your device.

Topics

Breaking News