College Week highlights San Antonio's growing status as a college town

San Antonio is one of the top college destinations in Texas with more than 150,000 students enrolled in a variety of colleges and universities. Between April 27 and May 4, Destination College celebrates San Antonio as both a college town and a college going town with free events each day.

Aimed at inspiring students of all ages, the third annual Destination College is a week-long, citywide opportunity to inform and connect students. The goal of Destination College is to bring higher education to the forefront of the minds of San Antonio residents, while elevating awareness of the SA2020 goal to increase college completion to 50 percent. According to the most recent data available from the American Community Survey, 23.1 percent of adults over the age of 25 in San Antonio held a 2-year or 4-year degree in 2011. This is a slight increase from 21 percent in 2010.

“The skills, knowledge, and personal growth obtained from the college experience are a powerful mix of ingredients that can be built into the foundation for a great, opportunity-laden, future,” said Darryl Byrd, CEO of SA2020. “Destination College is both a spirited celebration of San Antonio’s growing college going culture and a dynamic information resource for parents, students and others who are contemplating, preparing for, or completing the college journey in San Antonio and beyond.”

This is a true community event with support from educational institutions, nonprofit organizations, and the public sector. Destination College is a collaboration between SA2020, Mayor Julián Castro, San Antonio Education Partnership, Generation TX San Antonio, Advise TX, Diplomás, P16 Plus Council of Greater Bexar County, San Antonio Youth Commission, UT Outreach San Antonio, City Year San Antonio, Communities in Schools San Antonio, Centro Partnership, Big Brothers Big Sisters of South Texas, and Teach for America.

“San Antonio is on a path to becoming one of the most vibrant brainpower cities in the nation,” Mayor Julián Castro said. “College Week is growing fast, and with it so are the aspirations of thousands of San Antonians.”

Last year’s events drew nearly 2,500 students. This year, with the return of successful events like Elementary and Middle School Nights, College Signing Day, and the Destination College Summit, as well as new events like the Career Block Party and Empower YOUth Day, attendance is expected to double.

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Key events include:

Saturday, April 27: Empower YOUth Day (8 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.)
Good Samaritan Community Center, 1600 Saltillo St.
Area high school students, led by the San Antonio Youth Commission, will spend a day attending leadership workshops and helping make our city great through service projects directly tied to SA2020 indicators.

Monday, April 29: Destination College Kickoff & Press Conference (9 - 9:30 a.m.)
Steps of City Hall, 100 Military Plaza
Join Mayor Julián Castro and SA2020 CEO Darryl Byrd at the official kick-off celebration.

Tuesday, April 30: Elementary School Night (5:30 - 7:30 p.m.)
cafécollege, 131 El Paso St.
Elementary students and their parents are welcome to a free evening of games and interactive workshops. Information sessions on getting started early for college and citywide summer camps will also be featured.

Wednesday, May 1: Middle School Night (5:30 - 7:30 p.m.)
Cafécollege, 131 El Paso St.
Middle school students and their parents are welcome to a free evening of games and interactive workshops to help them start preparing now for success in high school. Information sessions on financial aid and college prep, as well as citywide summer camps will also be featured.

Thursday, May 2: Career Block Party (5:30 - 7:30 p.m.)
San Antonio Area Foundation, 303 Pearl Parkway, #114
Thinking about college also means thinking about what you might want to do as a career. There are multiple pathways to cool jobs and many of those exciting, 21st Century jobs can be found in San Antonio.

Friday, May 3: Mayor’s College Signing Ceremony (10 a.m. - Noon)
St. Mary’s University – Bill Greehey Arena, 1 Camino Santa Maria
San Antonio will publicly celebrate the seniors who have committed to attending college as students proclaim their plans. The whole city will take part in this event by wearing college t-shirts to work or school to show their support.

Saturday, May 4: Destination College Summit (9 a.m. – 2 p.m.)
Palo Alto College, 1400 Villaret, Palo Alto Gymnasium
San Antonio high school students will have the opportunity to attend meaningful workshops to learn the ins and outs of a college application and explore financial literacy, as well as connect with students from other area high schools.