Dreama Gentry, director of Berea College’s Office of Externally Funded Programs, has been appointed to College For Every Student’s (CFES) board of directors.
Gentry’s connections with CFES span more than eight years. She serves as principal investigator of five U.S. Department of Education programs and one Office of Juvenile Justice Delinquency Prevention Program, overseeing an annual budget of $18 million and a full-time staff of 130. She earned her Juris Doctor from the University of Kentucky College of Law in 1992 and a Bachelor’s degree in political science from Berea College in 1989.
Gentry has worked with CFES on several college access programs, targeting low-income, rural schools in Kentucky Appalachia. Beginning in July 2012, CFES and Berea College will partner in a new federally funded initiative that will serve 49 schools in the region. CFES is a program committed to helping low-income students forge a path to college access and success.
"For many years as I have worked with schools in rural Appalachia, I have been aware of the good work that CFES does and the positive impact CFES has on so many young people,” Gentry said. “I am honored to have the opportunity to serve on the CFES Board. I was the first in my family to attend college, and I look forward to working with CFES to ensure that all youth have the opportunity to attend college."
In recent months, Gentry’s office has been the recipient of several federal grants totaling more than $100 million. Those grants include $75 million in funding for two programs (GEAR UP Appalachia! and Promise Neighborhood GEAR UP) that serve elementary and middle school students in 17 central and southeastern Kentucky counties, a dozen of which are among the poorest in the nation, and a $30 million Promise Neighborhood grant which will support implementation of cradle-to-career services to improve the educational achievement and healthy development of children.