‘Push Up Challenge’ Brings Muscle To Dropout Prevention

There’s a chance to bulk up high school enrollment this Saturday, April 1, as Communities In Schools of Tennessee (CISTN) hosts the “Nashville Push Up Challenge” at Vanderbilt University’s Student Life Center.

The event invites adults and students to compete in push up competitions to raise money and awareness to fight the epidemic of high school dropouts.

According to CISTN, 9.7 percent of Davidson County’s high school students dropped out last year, a considerably higher rate than the state average of 5.6 percent. CISTN currently serves about 2,000 students throughout six schools in the Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools district. It assigned coordinators to case manage 249 Nashville students last year, keeping 97 percent in school by encouraging attendance, positive behavior, and academics.

“The ‘Push Up Challenge’ is a unique event, unlike any other taking place in Tennessee,” Erika Burnett, the director of CISTN’s Nashville affiliate, said. “The concept of setting and working toward individual goals is a critical component to both CISTN’s work and our overall mission to surround students with a community of support, empowering them to stay in school and achieve in life.”

The student competition will start at 9 a.m. and the adult open competition begins at 9:30 a.m. Teams will have 30 minutes to complete as many pushups as they can. Partner schools have assembled 14 student teams to participate, which are guided by CISTN coordinators, and teams of adults pay a registration fee. Additional revenue is being raised by participants’ individual networks and from local sponsorships.

“The funds raised from this event will go to support our program in the schools and the students we serve in Nashville,” Burnett said. “Proceeds will enable our site coordinators to provide integrated student supports and to connect students with critical community resources such as emergency food, school supplies, clothing, crisis support, and mentorship opportunities.”

Visit the CISTN website to learn more and donate.


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