4 What’s Next
4 What’s Next is a student-driven primary prevention program to help high school students develop positive coping skills and enhance protective factors in preparation for life beyond high school.
The program’s primary goals are to:
- Develop protective factors and social and emotional skills
- Build openness, connectedness, and empathy
- Empower students to create and communicate individual awareness, knowledge, and skills as a culmination of learning
- Identify future challenges and have the knowledge and skills to approach them with confidence
In 2016-17, JPF is designing this program with support from Psychology Doctoral students at Carlos Albizu University in Miami, Florida. Check back soon for more updates!
On November 23, 2015, juniors and seniors completed the first pilot 4 What’s Next program at East Catholic High School in Manchester, CT. 31 students comprised the core group that met weekly to discuss important transition topics and to plan their culminating event. On the 23rd, all the juniors and seniors listened to important messaging about mental health and the importance of talking to each other and looking out for one another. They also enjoyed a pizza lunch, an inspiring talk by mental health speaker Jordan Burnham, and small group discussions led by their peers and ECHS alum who shared their experiences transitioning to college. It was a successful first event, and we thank them for piloting this brand new program!
The Jordan Porco Foundation was awarded grant funding from the Ossen Foundation to support a pilot program of 4 What’s Next at Windham High School in Willimantic, CT. Twenty peer leaders met with a select group of staff to discuss transition topics that included developing support networks, finding a school or program that is the right fit, what the options are for life after high school, healthy relationships, sexual assault prevention, facing diverse experiences, financial management, time management, stress management, self-awareness, empathy, and basic wellness.
Students discussed their impending growing independence, regardless of whether they go away to school or stay close to home, and the need to know what services they may require and where to go for assistance. Based on the discussions, the core student group planned a two-day culminating event for the entire student body.
The event was held at Windham High School over two days, featuring nationally recognized speaker Jordan Burnham, for the entire school on 4/11/16 and a 4 What’s Next Fest on 4/12/16. The entire student population benefited from the programming designed by a team of student leaders, administration and faculty and the Jordan Porco Foundation.
JPF partnered with the Jed Foundation and Partnership for Drug-Free Keeds to complete a groundbreaking survey about mental health and the transition to college. The survey was fielded online by Harris Poll among 1,502 U.S. first-year college students between March 25 and April 17, 2015. Survey respondents were students 17-20 years old, graduated from high school, are in the second term of their first year at college, and attending at least some classes in-person at a 2-year or 4-year college. For complete survey results and methodology, including weighting variables and subgroup sample sizes, visit www.SettoGo.org.