PLATINUM2024

ACCESS College Foundation

aka ACCESS   |   Norfolk, VA   |  www.accesscollege.org

Mission

We provide educational pathways leading to certification or college degree attainment and career opportunities for students, particularly those who may not otherwise have access.

Ruling year info

1988

President and CEO

Mrs. Bonnie B. Sutton

Main address

2555 Ellsmere Avenue Suite 110

Norfolk, VA 23513 USA

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Formerly known as

Tidewater Scholarship Foundation

EIN

54-1440734

NTEE code info

Scholarships, Student Financial Aid, Awards (B82)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Sign in or create an account to view Form(s) 990 for 2023, 2022 and 2021.
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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

It is well documented that low- to moderate-income students are among the least likely to attend a college/university and complete their degree program. According to the most recent data available from the National Center for Education Statistics, the immediate college (2- or 4-year) enrollment rate for students from high-income families is still significantly higher than the rates for middle- and low-income families. ACCESS College Foundation helps students overcome this disparity by providing college access/success services to students as early as middle school through college graduation. By providing advisory services and financial aid assistance, ACCESS helps bridge the gap between financial need and the cost of attending a postsecondary institution, as well as helping students achieve their educational dreams.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

ACCESS Program

The ACCESS is a privately funded, nonprofit organization with a unique continuum of college access and success services that provide low-to moderate-income students from middle school through college graduation with the path to attend and complete higher education. For over 35 years, ACCESS College Foundation has served public school students through the following programs: Middle School, High School, College and Career Success. ACCESS commits to:

- Inspiring middle school students to pursue higher education.
- Providing high school students with the guidance/financial support needed to attain higher education.
- Helping college students remain in school while providing training, mentoring, and connecting students with internship and networking opportunities after graduation.

ACCESS currently has Advisors serving students in 28 high-need public middle schools, 30 public high schools, and on 15 Virginia university/college campuses.

Population(s) Served
Students
Adolescents
Preteens
Low-income people
Extremely poor people

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of students who receive scholarship funds and/or tuition assistance

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Students, Low-income people

Related Program

ACCESS Program

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

ACCESS College Foundation awarded 158 Last-Dollar Scholarships for the class of 2023.

Total dollar amount of scholarship awarded

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Students, Low-income people

Related Program

ACCESS Program

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

ACCESS College Foundation awarded a total of $1,318,000 in Last-Dollar Scholarships for the class of 2023.

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

The mission of ACCESS College Foundation is to provide educational pathways leading to certification or college degree attainment and career opportunities for students, particularly those who may not otherwise have access. ACCESS fulfills its mission by:

Working to ensure that low- to moderate-income middle school students are well-informed about their options regarding postsecondary education.

Providing students in every public high school in the cities of Norfolk, Portsmouth, Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, Suffolk; and in the county Northampton, VA with preparation, guidance and the financial assistance needed to make post-secondary education a reality.

Supporting our students while in college to help them stay in school and graduate.

Providing valuable training, networking, and mentoring to students while in college and connecting students to internship opportunities after graduation.

ACCESS is committed to providing postsecondary access and success services free of charge to local students and their families. Our goal is to eliminate barriers to attaining a postsecondary education for underrepresented and low- to moderate-income students, thereby increasing the number of students who successfully matriculate to a postsecondary institution and complete their certification or degree program.

Through the placement of advisors in 28 high-need public middle schools, 30 public high schools, and on 15 Virginia university/college campuses, ACCESS accomplishes the following:

- The ACCESS Middle School Program gives 7th and 8th graders a head start in understanding the necessary steps involved in attaining a postsecondary degree by providing workshops and advising sessions.

- The ACCESS 9th and 10th Grade Program helps students develop a personal educational plan to keep them on track for high school graduation, while increasing their knowledge and aspirations for pursuing education after high school.

- The ACCESS High School Program increases the number of students who enroll in postsecondary institutions by guiding 11th and 12th grade students through the complicated college application/admission pipeline and assisting high school seniors with college admission applications, financial aid, and scholarships. To bridge the gap between the amount of financial aid received and the actual cost of attending college, we also award ACCESS "Last-Dollar" Scholarships.

- ACCESS Scholars participating in the ACCESS College and Career Success Program benefit from the provision of support services through one-on-one and group counseling sessions with one of our advisors for academic, adjustment, financial, and personal issues. The College and Career Success Program promotes the successful progression and completion of postsecondary education. This program also assists ACCESS Scholars during their junior and senior years in college by providing workshops and networking/internship opportunities within our community.

ACCESS currently employs 1 part-time advisor and 34 full-time advisors who are fully committed to assisting this program's targeted student population with attaining postsecondary education and achieving postsecondary success. The Advisors and the program as a whole have a dedicated office staff of 12 full-time members to oversee and support program/administrative activities, perform administrative tasks relating to program implementation and execution, and ensure compliance in managing all grant funds and fulfilling all grant reporting responsibilities. The support of our Board of Directors (46 volunteer board members), coupled with the backing of the schools and community, enables us to provide the highest level of services for local students.

Since 1988, ACCESS Advisors have assisted more than 80,000 local public high school students with enrolling in college and helped secure $827 million in scholarships and financial aid for these students. Additionally, ACCESS Advisors have helped students secure over $15 million in ACCESS Last-Dollar Scholarships, bridging the gap between the amount of financial assistance received and the actual cost of attending college. For every $1 spent on program services, ACCESS leverages $11 in financial aid and scholarships for students. Our vision is that every desiring student in the South Hampton Roads and Northampton County region are given the opportunity to optimize their lives through the attainment of higher education.

Financials

ACCESS College Foundation
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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ACCESS College Foundation

Board of directors
as of 01/18/2024
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

R. Bruce Bradley

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 1/18/2024

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation

Disability

Equity strategies

Last updated: 01/16/2024

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Data
  • We ask team members to identify racial disparities in their programs and / or portfolios.
  • We analyze disaggregated data and root causes of race disparities that impact the organization's programs, portfolios, and the populations served.
  • We disaggregate data to adjust programming goals to keep pace with changing needs of the communities we support.
  • We employ non-traditional ways of gathering feedback on programs and trainings, which may include interviews, roundtables, and external reviews with/by community stakeholders.
  • We disaggregate data by demographics, including race, in every policy and program measured.
  • We have long-term strategic plans and measurable goals for creating a culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.
Policies and processes
  • We have a promotion process that anticipates and mitigates implicit and explicit biases about people of color serving in leadership positions.
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.