EMBARK Network: Support for Homeless Students
Over the last year, the Dean of Students office built a relationship with EMBARK Georgia and investigated ways to better assist homeless students and students in foster care. With a better understanding of state and national best practices for serving the youth in this population, the Dean of Students office and EMBARK have developed an approach to assist Georgia State students dealing with housing instability, food insecurity and other areas of vulnerability.
In 2012, EMBARK Georgia was developed with support from the College Access Challenge Grant (CACG) in the University System of Georgia. CACG emphasizes finding ways to increase college access for underrepresented populations. As a result, EMBARK Georgia was created to address the needs of homeless students and students in foster care. The EMBARK Georgia statewide network serves postsecondary professionals and institutions to ensure connectivity, share best practices and provide information exchange among youth, community based stakeholders and K-12 educators in support of former foster and homeless youth. Georgia State University first connected with EMBARK Georgia by establishing a designated point of contact for those seeking assistance for homeless students and students in foster care. The designated points of contact for all University System of Georgia and Technical College System of Georgia institutions are listed on the University System of Georgia website.
It is clear that many faculty and staff assist students in this population on a regular basis, but the establishment of the EMBARK network at Georgia State has allowed for greater assistance to students. Staff are able to share resources, provide appropriate and direct referrals, view students’ needs comprehensively, provide early intervention of student issues and gain a better understanding of how Georgia State can assist students to be successful in college. The network will serve to provide greater college access by making some of our most vulnerable students aware of the opportunities and resources available to them. EMBARK will directly impact student retention by providing these students with the tools to remain enrolled and progress through college.
To learn more about the EMBARK Network at Georgia State University, please contact the Dean of Students office.