College JUMP (Journey Upward Mentoring Program)

Refugee Youth Project’s College JUMP (Journey Upward Mentoring Program) was created in 2015 through a partnership between the BCCC Refugee Youth Project and University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) in response to the need RYP staff saw among its students for more college preparation. Undergraduate students volunteer as near-peer mentors to 11th- and 12th-grade refugee students in Baltimore City and County. Mentors and mentees meet on a weekly basis to go over college exploration, application, and preparation. They also participate in monthly events and/or workshops, aimed to expose students to various aspects of college life. Ultimately, College JUMP strives to empower students with the knowledge, skills, and mindset to gain admission and feel prepared for success in postsecondary institutions.

At this time, all program volunteers are UMBC students, but College JUMP hopes to expand to other colleges and universities in the near future.  This project is funded and supported by the Campus Compact Mid-Atlantic and AmeriCorps VISTA.

Meet the 2017-2018 Leadership Team!


Shannon Cole

Fundraising Coordinator for College JUMP

Shannon Cole currently serves as the Fundraising Coordinator for College JUMP and works on the financial needs for the program. Shannon works to schedule fundraiser nights and apply for funding in order to keep our program running. Shannon is a Sondheim Public Affairs Scholar and has been a mentor with College JUMP for the last two years. Shannon is currently studying Biology and is interested in pursuing a career in the public health and regulatory science fields after she graduates in December.”

Reach her at