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DC College Signing Day

What is College Signing Day?

DC College Signing Day is a chance to celebrate graduating high school students for making a commitment to higher education. Hosted by schools, organizations, community leaders and influencers, Signing Day is a chance to rally around local students and show them your support. Created as part of First Lady Michelle Obama’s Reach Higher initiative in 2014, this movement is a way for educators, counselors and parents to encourage and recognize those heading to college. In today's economy, a high school diploma just isn't enough. Students have to reach higher, which is why the First Lady is working to rally the country around the President's "North Star" goal - that by 2020, America will once again have the highest proportion of college graduates in the world.

Why College Signing Day?

Media attention often goes to promising athletes when they select the college of their choice. By supporting the tradition of DC College Signing Day, we want every college-bound DC student to receive as much attention and have that same feeling of importance.

Celebrating College Signing Day in the District

While DC has enjoyed a comprehensive and culminating DC College Signing Day event in recent years, feedback from individual schools led us to transition to support school and LEA-based celebrations in an effort to:

  • Recognize all students for their postsecondary plans;
  • Support the best match and fit for every student;
  • Encourage younger students to observe and participate;
  • Create an opportunity for feeder schools and community to join in; and
  • Support the college-going culture within the school.

This year, individual LEAs and high schools are encouraged to host College Signing Day events in the high school during the months of April and May. The OSSE College and Career Readiness team is excited to support you in planning and promoting your own College Signing Day event. The following websites are an excellent place to start:

  • Better Make Room – College Signing Day; register your school’s event in the national Signing Day database and find event planning templates, social media graphics, VIP Guest request template and information on fundraising.
  • Michigan College Access Network – Decision Day; view webinars on Decision Day and hosting your own event, download the comprehensive Decision Day Resource Manual for planning checklists, sample agendas, activity ideas, stakeholder letter templates, and student resources.

With the local and national conversation centering on postsecondary completion, DC College Signing Day is an exciting event that celebrates DC students and helps build a college-going culture in our schools and communities. Read an article about 2015 DC College Signing Day.

See a highlight video of the 2016 DC College Signing Day.

If your high school is hosting its own College Signing Day event and would like press or promotion, or need more general information, please contact Janel Young at (202) 481-3485 or [email protected].