Is AVID helpful?

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Ivyna Lor, Staff Writer

Roseville Area High School’s AVID program follows lessons and protocols to help students find success in high level courses and in college.  Many students in AVID find the curriculum to be pointless and others find it to be helpful. 

Senior Annah Jaafaru, finds the AVID curriculum helps her navigate school and the college application process.   Jaafaru said, “Through all the 6 years I have been in AVID, it has made me more organized. Instead of looking at so much work, I look at it as an opportunity no other students have. Having tutors and mentors for extra help, connections, scholarships, readiness for college and most importantly relationships with teachers that want us, students, to succeed.”

Senior Jeremy Brown did not benefit from the curriculum used by AVID.  Brown expressed, “[Avid] was a lot of unnecessary work. It was also a lot of pressure on what I couldn’t do. Everything I learned in the program was a bit generalized; I could do it myself.”

Students who do not have any resources or are the first generation to go to college found AVID to be helpful. Numerous AVID students who fall in this category stated how AVID has helped them through the basics of achieving college and what it is.

Mrs. Oberstar, an AVID teacher for the Juniors and Seniors relayed a story where one of her students benefited from the program.  Oberstar said, “I had a student four years ago who when they came to high school was in the connection program which typically is a program for students that needs extra help. That student between their 9 or 10 year applied for the AVID program. They had low confidence within themselves and no goals. Within their two years of AVID, they took rigorous courses. Being successful, they realized they are a good student, worked hard, and gained a lot of self-confidence within themselves. They ended up getting scholarships, and are now attending a four-year university.”

AVID stands for Advanced, Via, Individual, Determination developed by Mary Catherine Swanson in 1980. The program is an opportunity for some students who choose to challenge themselves to prepare for college. 

On the AVID website, data specifically for the state of Minnesota showed, “94% of AVID Minnesota Seniors completed Four-Year College Entrance Requirements” 

Research on the AVID website also showed that First-generation AVID alumni who go to college are four times more likely to graduate than their national peers; in addition, 99% of AVID students have graduated in the state of Minnesota.