OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — Denise Hernandez is a Partnership 4 Kids success story. The program, P4K, is all about goal setting and mentoring. She's been in the program since 7th grade and now she's heading off to the University of Nebraska.
“I feel extremely rewarded seeing our students come in today (to pick up a college send-off basket) and have the excitement and glee because they’re starting this huge milestone in their life,” said Molly Verble, Director of College and High School Programming.
Partnership 4 Kids provides more than college care packages.
“I think I would have been a little bit lost without their guidance because I’m a first-generation student,” Hernandez said. “So I never had anyone to tell me what steps to take to actually go to college.”
They show students what’s possible, and give them the tools to get there.
“We work with kids to help them identify their strengths, their aptitudes, their talents,” Verble said. “Then all of the options whether it be a two-year degree, a four-year degree, a trade school so that they’re going into the best career option based on what their skills and interests are.”
Even before then, they're introducing students to new opportunities like golf.
Many of these middle school students had never picked up a golf club before this week-long summer program.
“I’m probably going to join golf when I go to high school because it seems fun,” said Asmina Gurung, P4K 9th grade student.
“We’re hoping that the P4K students walk away with the experience of learning the basic skills of golf that they will be able to carry with them through the rest of their life, when building their careers, building friendships,” said Joanne Poppleton, Director of Elementary and Middle School Programming.
Liam Keesee, a P4K 9th grade student, said his mentors are helping with his mindset on and off the golf course.
“About the future, about college, about how much college costs, I used to think college costs a lot more than what I think now,” Keesee said.
He's looking forward to walking across that stage one day, like Hernandez and these other P4K graduates.
“They have persevered and really stayed engaged,” Verble said.
Partnership 4 Kids is gearing up for their big fundraiser of the year Swing 4 Kids on Monday, July 26 at Tiburon Golf Club. It's an 18-hole golf scramble with raffles, a silent auction, and prizes. You can still register for the golf scramble online.