Interview with Kathleen O'Donnell.
[MP3, 14.4 MB]
Kathleen O'Donnell is the driving force behind Destination 2010, a graduation scholarship initiative of The Minneapolis Foundation. Launched in the spring of 2001, Destination 2010 supports more than 200 eighth-grade students in Minneapolis and St. Paul Public Schools. These students, the majority of whom are from low-income households, have been followed as a group from their original third-grade classrooms at seven struggling schools. The students are now spread out across 40 different schools in two districts. The program provides a scholarship incentive of $10,000 for college or $5,000 for a vocational/technical school to be awarded in the year 2010, as long as the students stay enrolled in St. Paul or Minneapolis Public Schools. Destination 2010 also provides these students with computers, software and educational instruction. Using Internet access installed and provided at no cost by Time Warner Cable, these students have improved their achievement scores and are now linked to youth programs and community resources that will help them prepare for college. In addition, the Time Warner Cable home connection means that not only the student, but the entire family can benefit from having high speed online service. Parents can communicate with teachers and school district officials via email and the Internet.