Envisioning Success for All Students – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

Envisioning Success for All Students

This summer, Camp Vision will come to campus from July 6 – 10. Similar to its affiliated program, Project Eye-to-Eye, the week-long session aims to empower middle school students with learning disabilities through art, athletics, and academics. The counselors are college students who also have learning disabilities, and will provide positive role models for younger students.

Project Eye-to-Eye is an innovative program in which college students with learning-disabilities mentor middle school students one-on-one through an arts curriculum. The Colleges house one of the most active and committed chapters of the program, and, after only its second year on campus, Project Eye- to- Eye has grown to include not just a national chapter, but a club and a theme house.

Many interested campers unfortunately could not afford the $225 tuition for Camp Vision, which put into motion Project Eye-to-Eye’s fundraising campaign, including letter-writing, mailing brochures, and selling glow sticks for the Girl Talk concert. Headed by Jamie Billington ’10 and Zoe Larson ’09, the club’s fundraising efforts were extremely successful.

“Our students did amazing work, coming up with innovative ways to fundraise,” lauded Susan Pliner, faculty advisor of Project Eye-to-Eye and director of the Center for Teaching and Learning. “The brochure campaign was particularly effective; people sent in checks from $5 to $500!” The brochures included artwork done by Project Eye-to-Eye middle school students in response to the question, “What would it mean to you to attend Camp Vision?”

With additional help from Coordinator Parent, Genevan Jennifer Hackett, HWS BAC, and Geneva Middle School Student Government, Project Eye-to-Eye raised enough money to fund each student who required financial assistance. A total of 10-15 campers are expected to attend.

“We were shocked,” said Alexandra Connell ’10, Project Eye- to- Eye coordinator, in response to the club’s success. “We only expected to fund three students, since we didn’t start fundraising until the end of the semester.”

Now, Project Eye-to-Eye hopes to connect to other programs across the nation. “Our campus is responding to Project Eye-to-Eye’s mission, and it’s reaching people all over the country,” says Connell. “It reflects the reasons why I love HWS.”

For more on Camp Vision, click here.