Members of UCI's Center for Educational Partnerships (CFEP) introduced 1000+ Santa Ana Unified School District (SAUSD) kindergarten students to Peter the Anteater and UCI at the 25th annual KinderCaminata, held Friday, March 16th at Santa Ana College.
KinderCaminata, a partnership between SAUSD and Santa Ana College, is designed to provide an early college experience where kindergartners explore and learn about different career possibilities and the importance of attending college. "It's their first college tour," said Paola Sotelo, CFEP Coordinator of the Early Academic Outreach Program (EAOP).
The event features a series of activity booths where students participate in hands-on demonstrations and view exhibits introducing them to career opportunities that require a college education. At the CFEP booth the students were asked questions about Peter, UCI's mascot, and then created an ant, Peter's dinner, using construction paper, pipe cleaners, and googly eyes. Students ended their booth visit with a brief lesson in signaling UCI's zot-zot-zot slogan and left with their ant in a EAOP bag.
Both EAOP and CFEP's Transfer Prep Program coordinated booth operations. CFEP volunteers included Transfer Prep Program Student Coordinators Lynda Dubon-Chavez, Angel Sanchez, Gabriela Campos, and Gilberto Pozos-Avila; EAOP Director Ashley Cheri; and Paola.
The KinderCaminata is one of many activities that CFEP has developed over its past 20-year collaboration with Santa Ana College and SAUSD. The latest initiative of the Santa Ana Partnership is the Santa Ana Promise dedicated to elevating academic achievement and college going attendance for students who attend high schools in the city of Santa Ana. As Paola Sotelo explains, "The goal of Santa Ana Promise is to one day have a college degree in every home in Santa Ana. Santa Ana Promise provides every SAUSD high school graduate with the promise of admission to either California State University, Fullerton (CSUF) or the University of California, Irvine (UCI) as long as they enroll at Santa Ana College (SAC) within one year of graduating from SAUSD and complete all academic and application requirements for transfer. For more information about the Santa Ana Promise, please visit: https://www.sac.edu/StudentServices/SantaAnaAdelante/Pages/default.aspx