CLEVELAND, Ohio — Sara Janosik has always had high hopes when it comes to her education. 

  • An organization in Cleveland is helping to make college more affordable and accessible for students across the Buckeye State
  • College Now provides students with advice on applying to college, scholarships, retention services and mentoring
  • The organization serves about 29,000 students and provides about $79 million in scholarships

“I’ve always loved helping people a lot, so this is something I’ve always wanted to do, be in the medical field, and occupational therapy just happened to be the one that I chose,” said Sara Janosik, student.

But paying for an undergraduate program isn’t easy, so she tapped into the resources of College Now. 

“I was probably going to go to college anyway because both of my parents have, but it definitely made it more possible coming from a single-parent household. So, it made it a lot easier for me,” Janosik said.

Lee Friedman is the CEO of College Now, which she says is the oldest and largest college access organization in the country.

The organization serves about 29,000 students and provides about $79 million in scholarships.

“Most of the students we serve, not exclusively, are coming from non-college-going or non-post-secondary cultures," said Friedman. "Again, we use the word college loosely, but we’re talking about any credential past high school."

College Now works with students and adults at all education levels, providing advice on applying to college, scholarships, retention services, and mentoring. 

“We talk about everything,” said Janosik. “We email them a couple times a month. We just catch up and then we meet up too whenever we can, because we’re both very busy. But, we talk about school, we talk about, really, whatever, she’s more like a friend."

As Janosik takes advantage of those resources, she’s applying for her next level of schooling.

Friedman says making dreams like hers become a reality isn't just great for the students, but also for a state she says is struggling to have a post-high school-educated workforce.

And according to CollegeCalc, the average cost of college is $15,000 a year.

“Ohio is the seventh largest state, we’re 36th in educational attainment and 45th in affordability for public college, so there’s no limit to the number of people we could serve,” said Friedman. 

A hope for limitless opportunity for the future of the Buckeye State.