The mission of Fostering Terp Success (FTS) is to increase the academic and personal success of undergraduate students who have a history of foster care involvement and/or are experiencing homelessness or housing insecurity, and lack a supportive family system. Through our campus-wide network, we work to provide support, remove barriers, and assist students in accessing essential campus services, navigating challenges, and developing self-advocacy and life skills.
Fostering Terp Success students face significant unmet needs, many of which present overwhelming barriers to success. Your donation enables us to meet critical needs and helps us ensure individualized and student-driven support!
Since the program began welcoming students in Spring 2019, we have served more than 100 students via intake, referral to resources, and/or enrollment in the program. We currently have 30 students receiving case management from FTS staff as well as mentoring from a campus coach. Approximately 87% of our FTS students are experiencing homeless (and are safely housed) and 13% have been involved in foster care. Additionally, a disproportionate number of our students experiencing homelessness are BIPOC and LGBTQ+ young adults, which aligns with the national and Prince George's County, Maryland average.
Your donation contributes to solutions! Here's how:
Our priority is ensuring that students’ basic and most essential needs are met. This includes housing, food, clothing, personal care items, and other living essentials. Living on campus has a positive impact for college students and that’s where we want them to be; however, paying for housing and/or affording a meal plan can be a challenge. 12-month campus housing is a particularly tough barrier since students require additional funding to cover winter and summer break housing. We need help to close these gaps.
Many of our Fostering Terp Success students receive financial assistance toward the cost of tuition, fees, and other expenses, but it rarely covers everything they need to be successful. The cost of required textbooks and specialty course supplies can present overwhelming barriers. Gaps in funding lead to students in classes without the necessary tools to be successful in those classes.
We provide ongoing support from a full-time case manager, and each FTS student is matched with a Campus Coach to help them accomplish their goals and leverage their strengths to overcome barriers. Campus coaches are UMD faculty and staff who are trained to provide one-on-one mentoring to Fostering Terp Success students.
We create a brave space where students are welcomed and embraced rather than isolated by their circumstances. We organize networking opportunities and workshops (always offered along with a hot meal) to help students enhance their inherent skills and develop important self-advocacy and life skills.
Our ultimate goal is to provide students with the support and tools they need to graduate with a bachelor’s degree from UMD and transition to success beyond UMD. We now have 11 Fostering Terp Success UMD alumni and we look forward to many more!
Gifts in support of the University of Maryland are accepted and managed by the University of Maryland College Park Foundation, Inc., an affiliated 501(c)(3) organization authorized by the Board of Regents. Contributions to the University of Maryland are tax deductible as allowed by law. Please see your tax advisor for details.