Building Hope for Bright Futures

By 2020, 60% of jobs will require education beyond high school.
Yet only 12% of Indiana youth are saving for post-secondary education with a college choice 529 account.

DeKalb County Promise…

To ensure every child has the assets, champions, and community support to pursue their dreams.

Building Future Stories

Low-and moderate-income youth with a Career Savings Account, even with a balance of just $1-$499 are 3 times more likely to attend some post-high school training and 4 times more likely to graduate. We are making a difference by establishing a child’s “future story” at an early age.

Curriculum targeted to build “Future Stories”

In an intentional effort, teachers use an established curriculum to teach children about an expectation that they will attend career training after high school. This plants the seed that completing high school is very important. Furthermore, it sets the expectation that learning beyond high school, such as trade school or college, is important. Ruby Payne’s work, as presented in “Bridges Out of Poverty”, discusses the importance of establishing a child’s “future story” at an early age.

About the Promise

Educational Savings

Families start a CollegeChoice 529 Direct Savings Account. Students with dedicated funds for education know their futures are bright, and people who believe in them are saving for it!

College & Career Discovery

Students participate in college and career discovery in the classroom. Lessons include: “Who will I be when I grow up?” “Who are my champions who will support me?” and “What does college look like?”

“Walk Into My Future”

Kindergarten through third grade students of DeKalb County experience a college campus through hands-on activities and meet college students to learn about possible future areas of study and careers. Citing the importance of such an experience, Clint Kugler, Wabash County YMCA CEO and Promise Co-founder, said “giving young children that personal
experience of imagining they are a post-high school student plants the seed of a dream for their future. It helps change a child’s identity.”

Engaging Champions

​Champions encourage students to pursue their dreams or contribute to a student’s career savings account. Eligible students who raise $25 or more from their champions receive a community match!

Community Culture

The Promise creates a culture of student success and builds hope for the future. Community Foundation DeKalb County has facilitated over 800 education scholarships over the past 20 years. Our goal is to reach over 8,000 career savings accounts over the next 5-7 years.

Creating 529 Career Savings Plans

Students have the flexibility to use their savings at any eligible 2- and 4-year college, graduate school, and importantly in DeKalb County, vocational/technical school, touching the lives of community members countywide. Learn about the Indiana Education Savings Authority, the governing board of the CollegeChoice 529 Savings Plans.