Barnard is a partner institution of Let’s Get Ready! (LGR), a nonprofit organization that provides free SAT tutoring and college application assistance to high school students who might not otherwise find their way to college. Audrey Massmann ’14 and Jordana Moser ’14 are among a group of Barnard students who volunteer on a weekly basis with LGR at Goddard Riverside Community Center. Here, they answer a few questions about their involvement with the organization and their roles as site directors.

What is Let's Get Ready? How are Barnard students involved?

MOSER: LGR helps underserved high schoolers by providing tutoring services in preparation for the SAT exam and overall guidance through the college application process. Barnard students serve as volunteer “coaches” by tutoring small groups of high school kids who meet twice per week—once with our coaches who focus on math skills, and once with coaches who focus on verbal skills. The coaches also help the students with essays and other parts of their college applications.

What distinguishes the roles of site directors from other student volunteers?

MASSMANN: As site leaders, Jordana and I help coaches develop and implement lesson plans, manage supplies and snacks, act as substitute coaches as needed, report data to the central office, do fund-raising, and organize college trips, financial-aid information sessions, diagnostic exams, and other special events for the program.

Why is your work with Let's Get Ready important to you?

MOSER: I always knew that college would be my next step after high school, but I know that for a lot of teenagers, it’s hardly a given. The students come in with a desire to go to college, but they don’t know how to navigate the process. Helping them get to college is a way of “paying forward” my good fortune to be at a great school like Barnard.

MASSMANN: LGR helped me discover my love of teaching. It is a way to make a real difference, whether that means helping students from low-income families navigate financial-aid options, staying after class to help a student with her calculus homework, or just explaining fractions in a way that a student can finally understand. Being able to change the course of even a few lives makes LGR very important to me.

Let’s Get Ready! is a finalist for the American Giving Awards. Click here to cast your vote!