Troy eighth-graders visit Wright State University


By Matt Clevenger

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FAIRBORN — Eighth-grade students from Troy Junior High School toured the Wright State University campus on Wednesday, March 6, Thursday, March 7, and Friday, March 8, during the annual eighth-grade goes to college event hosted by the Troy City Schools and local non-profit organization The Future Begins Today (TFBT).

“Students are taken on a full campus tour given by WSU Admissions Team Ambassadors,” TFBT Executive Director Katie Clevenger said. “They also complete a scavenger hunt and walk the campus with their group, touring everything from lecture halls to small chemistry labs, dorm rooms, and the Student Union.”

“The main purpose of this trip is for eighth-grade students to begin thinking about all of the many options they could pursue after graduating high school,” she said. “We have a great relationship with Wright State, and since it is a relatively nearby university, it is a wonderful opportunity for students to have a first-hand college experience.”

Approximately 300 students toured the university this year, during three separate field trips. TFBT covers the cost of the students’ transportation, and the district provides staff members from Troy Junior High School who serve as chaperones.

“The Future Begins Today received grant funding from the Troy Noon Optimists Club and The Troy Foundation, along with our donor support to help fund this event,” Clevenger said.

TFBT has been hosting the annual trip for approximately 10 years, she said.

“The eighth-graders really appreciate being given the chance to walk amongst college students and get a sneak peek at what college life might look like for them,” Clevenger said. “Students really seem to be interested in what food the cafeterias at Wright State have to offer; they also really enjoy touring the various dorm rooms.”

“This year, WSU paid for 15 students’ lunches,” she said. “Students were selected at random, and were able to choose whatever food they wanted to eat from the dining hall.”

The Future Begins Today is a non-profit organization that supports nurturing, mentoring and scholarship programs for students in the Troy City Schools. The organization was established over than 25 years ago, by local philanthropists, business leaders and educators. More information can be found online at

“We support approximately 1,500 students and their families annually through our different programs,” Clevenger said. ”We do field trips, family events, our homework helper and lunch buddy programs, last dollar grant scholarships, and the Trojan Futures program at Troy High School.”

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