Standing between Andrea Magaña and her college dreams were some extremely tough obstacles. Her family moved to New Rochelle from Mexico after she was born; neither of her parents had gone to college, and finances put private SAT tutors out of the equation.

But Andrea understood that secondary education would be key to a prosperous future. “I had to attend college, seeing all the sacrifices my parents had and still are making for my brothers and me,” she says. And it wasn’t just about a career; Andrea also had a hunger for intellectual growth. “I have always loved learning. It’s a way for me to experience life in a new light.”

A college counselor recommended Let’s Get Ready to Andrea, who signed up in a heartbeat, a first step in making her college dreams a reality. She credits the program with providing the tools she needed to get to college: effective SAT prep, exposure to opportunity, guidance through the college application process, and the confidence to achieve it all.

Andrea describes her Coaches as infinitely attentive as they steered her towards enrollment. “My coaches and site directors helped me with every question and concern I had regarding selecting the right college,” she says. Her SAT scores skyrocketed as well, increasing more than 200 points.

“I was lucky enough to have such an approachable math Coach who helped me with my college essay after the SAT course was over–I was very thankful,” she recalls, adding to the chorus of stories about Let’s Get Ready college student volunteers going the extra mile.

With the information and moral support provided through Let’s Get Ready, Andrea enrolled at Lehman College in the Bronx. Compassionate and eager to give back as always, Andrea is now serving as a Site Director with the program. In this capacity, she recruits and manages a community of Coaches, setting up events and connecting her peers to key resources to ensure their graduation from college.

But Andrea, now majoring in Business Administration with a focus on International Business & Marketing, isn’t stopping there. “One of my goals is to set up a foundation or scholarship to help students with similar stories to mine,” she says. She is set to graduate in May 2018.