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Press Release

Date: May 9, 2014

Nadine Baker/AIM
402-345-5025 x104

Jerry Mathiasen, Senior Vice President

Graduation Near for AIM College Access Program High School Seniors

(Council Bluffs, IA) AIM and the Iowa West Foundation are announcing a graduation celebration for 23 Council Bluffs high school seniors enrolled in the College Access Program (CAP).   

On May 14, 2014, AIM and Iowa West will host a graduation ceremony for CAP students, parents and local school administrators from 6:00 7:30 the Council Bluffs Public Library. Each graduate will be awarded a $1,000 scholarship to be used for his or her college education – 20 funded by the Foundation and three funded by AIM for early graduates.

“Education is one of the focus areas adopted by the Iowa West Foundation as a part of its new strategic plan“, said Pete Tulipana, President and CEO of the Iowa West Foundation. “CAP is a significant tool to assist students who want to be their family’s first generational college student. Congratulations to the second graduation class of CAP.”       

CAP is a multi-year grant, awarded to AIM by the Iowa West Foundation in 2009. The goal of the grant is to prepare low income, first generation students to successfully graduate from high school and then enroll and complete college. Currently, CAP serves 100 students in grades 9 – 12 at Thomas Jefferson High School and Abraham Lincoln High School.

CAP provides a variety of activities for students such as:

  • After school academic tutoring and teacher mentoring;

  • College campus tours;

  • Career exploration and financial aid workshops for both students and their parents;

  • AIM Summer Academies highlighting ACT preparation, scholarship application process, and math enrichment education.

Students and parents were asked what they liked best about the CAP program.

Ikran Ahmed, a senior CAP student at Thomas Jefferson High School said, “Joining CAP was one of the best decisions I’ve made in my life. I’ve learned a lot of skills that I will need in college, such as how to study for tests and quizzes and how to pay for college. Without CAP I would probably not have done well in any of my classes or have an idea of what to do after graduation.”

Mrs. Wilson, mother of Natalie Wilson a CAP senior at Abraham Lincoln High School, said, “The most positive thing about the CAP program is the mentoring and the guidance given by the teachers and mentors. I have learned so much myself so much so that I actually enrolled at Metro and am half way through earning my associates degree. I credit this program and Natalie as my inspiration. The mentors showed true interest in her success and made her feel like she was capable of anything she set her mind to.”

About the Iowa West Foundation
The Iowa West Foundation is a private community based foundation, which makes grants to non-profit organizations and governmental entities in southwest Iowa and eastern Nebraska. Since its creation in 1994, the Foundation has awarded over $300 million in grants. For more information, visit    

About AIM  
AIM is a not-for-profit community organization that promotes technology to empower people, enhance organizations and create brilliant communities. AIM's signature services include Careerlink- the region's leading career development website and Infotec- the Midwest's premier business and IT conference, and Hatchfund- a crowdfunding source for artists. For more information about these services, training, youth programs, research and more, visit 

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