Even a Fall Nor’easter could not stop over 90 participants (47 parents, 43 students) and 20 Sorority members from attending Central Jersey Alumnae’s Getting Ready for College Workshop on October 27, 2018. The event was held at Franklin Middle School in Franklin Township, NJ and consisted of workshops to prepare students and parents for the college admissions process and first year.

Over the past 3 years, CJA’s Education Committee, under the leadership of Sorors Michelle Fielder and Brenda Edwards-Miller, has presented programs consisting of informative workshops focused on college preparation and career exploration. With attendance tripling each year, the committee yielded 156 registrants this year alone! Imagine the turnout had it been a sunny day. Lots of hard work and planning was required to present the following six workshops:


  • S1 - First Year Experience - Cheryll Willis
  • S2 - Effective Essays for College Applications and Scholarships - Schuyler Van Amson
  • S3 - Online Scholarship Session (Students) - Shar-Mekka Pernell


  • P1 - First Year Parent Experience - LaToya Brown-Battle
  • P2 - Providing Emotional Support for Your Scholar - Jennifer Durham
  • P3 - College Finance and Financial Aid - Dana Martin

Session evaluations were filled with the following types of student comments:

  • “I learned the correct structure of college app essay.
  • “I learned about the NJ Rising Stars program where I can go to Community College for free for 2 years.”
  • “I learned a lot about scholarship websites.”

Parents were also impressed and expressed their satisfaction with comments.

  • I learned to include the scholar in the admissions process to ensure ownership.”
  • I learned a step by step application process and best ways to find aid.”
  • Finally, one parent summed it all up with “I learned how parents and students can work together for a common goal.”

Students and parents shared topics of interest for future workshops, particularly understanding college life, HBCUs and the first-year transition. The committee hopes to address these and other interests in subsequent workshops.

Many CJA members showed up to lend a hand the day of the program. The Education Committee would like to thank all the Sorors for another wonderful Educational Development event.