FCE Organizational History

Creating the Model


Christopher Roe and Glenn Singleton founded FCE in 1995 with the goal of providing no-cost college advising services to high school juniors and seniors. FCE’s first students attended Woodside High School in Redwood City. In 1997, FCE established a formal collaboration with the Palo Alto Unified School District Voluntary Transfer Program (VTP), a court-ordered desegregation program that allows East Palo Alto families to send their children to school in Palo Alto and other local communities.

Growing the Model


In 1998, Stephanie Wick became FCE’s Executive Director. Under her leadership, FCE expanded its program to meet the broader needs of students and families, developed program policies and standards, increased staff, and created student leadership and expert advisory teams. The organization also designed a college retention program to serve its college students and put greater emphasis on educating families about the college admission process as a means of engendering systemic change in the East Palo Alto community.

Completing the Model


Under the leadership of Dr. Anna Waring, who became FCE’s Executive Director in 2007, the number of students and families served doubled and the organizational budget tripled. Dr. Waring promoted cross-agency collaborations to increase efficiency and expanded the college scholarship component to meet increasing financial aid gaps. The addition of a middle school program, STEAM, in 2013, made FCE the first organization in San Mateo County to support students from sixth grade through college graduation.

Recognizing the Model


2007: FCE was recognized as a model college access organization by the Lumina Foundation.

2011: The Educational Policy Institute (EPI) recognized FCE as one of ten outstanding college access organizations in their publication, A Blueprint for Success: Case Studies of Successful Pre-College Outreach Programs.

2012: Palo Alto Weekly and the Palo Alto Chamber of Commerce awarded FCE the Tall Tree Award for Outstanding Non-Profit.

Success Stories Videos

Two minute videos about how FCE has helped college graduates succeed. Click on a video to view.

Anna Waring, PhD.
Anna Waring Video

Anna explains Foundation for a College Education’s approach to increasing the number of low-income students of color from East Palo Alto who graduate from a 4 year college.

Pablo Hernandez
Pablo Hernandez Video

Pablo has two children who have been a part of the FCE program. He explains how the program eased the college-going process for his family and impacted his children’s education.

Joyce, Mary, and Rachael Latu
Joyce, Mary, and Rachael Latu Video

Joyce, Mary, and Rachael all went through the FCE program. Hear about their personal journeys.

Charles Edwards
Charles Edwards Video

Charles tells the story of his involvement with FCE and how he benefitted from the program.

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