Local: Jumpstart Atlanta

localJumpstart Atlanta at GSU, housed in the College of Education, sends trained student volunteers to teach in preschool classes and early learning centers in low-income communities in Atlanta.

Project Director Eshe Collins says her students go into some of the city’s more underserved neighborhoods. “Children in these areas are oftentimes already behind, and the achievement gap has already started,” she said.

Teams of six or seven students teach twice a week in four learning centers in the Old Fourth Ward, Peoplestown and Bankhead communities.

Jumpstart members are obligated to complete 300 community service hours; once completed, they earn an award to pay toward student loans or education expenses. Students come to Jumpstart not just from the College of Education, Collins said, but from disciplines ranging from accounting to biology.

At 60 members strong, Jumpstart Atlanta at GSU is the largest off-campus community service organization at Georgia State, and its service impacts 150 children and their families.

“It’s life-changing work,” Collins says.