Explore your pathway at the College Fair Extraordinaire

This Saturday, from 9 a.m. to noon, students will gather along The Mall for the College Fair Extraordinaire, an event aimed at educating students about their further education and transfer possibilities.

This event will be geared toward freshman admission for high school students. However, college students, staff members, community members or anyone who is looking to further their education are welcome and encouraged to attend.

Sergio Gonzalez, an outreach and recruitment coordinator, and Transfer Center Director Sunday Salter have been working with 13 LAUSD and charter schools. They have been coordinating the event and hosting meetings throughout the summer to figure out how many representatives will be able to direct workshops and how many colleges and universities will be in attendance.

Approximately 100 colleges and universities will be attending the event to allow students to gather all the information they need. Free lunch will also be provided along with music and entertainment. Two information booths will be on each end of the fair, and there will be programs/bulletins that will be passed out as members of the community enter. Volunteers from the high schools will also be available for assistance.

“It’s difficult to find events where you could have 100 universities giving you information, and you have it here in your backyard, so take advantage of it,” Gonzalez said.

Rodney Morales, a kinesiology major, never had the opportunity to attend a college fair in high school.

“It would have been helpful to figure out more about my major, see if there was a different major I liked, or been able to see the classes I needed to be more prepared,” Morales said.

Because September is Suicide Prevention Month, the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health reached out to be a part of the College Fair Extraordinaire. They are interested in targeting college and high school students to build more awareness about suicide prevention.

There will be approximately 17 workshops including community college and how to transfer, UC and Cal. State applications, how to write personal statements, testing, financial aid, and financial aid for undocumented students. There will also be financial aid workshops in Spanish.

Gonzalez said that it is very beneficial to have events like the College Fair Extraordinaire available to the community.

“It helps some of the smaller high schools, or high schools that don’t have the space or the capacity to host their own fair, or don’t have the time for one individual to coordinate a large-scale event,” Gonzalez said. “We collaborate with the community to host for the community.”

The representatives from the universities are mainly focused on freshman admission, not on transfer admission, but they usually know the answers to most students’ questions. Salter welcomes students to visit the transfer center for other workshops and assistance on transfer admissions. Salter strongly encourages students to have a list of questions for the representatives at the fair about requirements, classes, campus life, or anything they may need to know.

“The goal is finding out if it is going to be a place where you are going to feel comfortable and want to go,” Salter said.