The Wily Network has the singular goal of improving college outcomes for promising young people who, having persevered through such life challenges as aging out of foster care, homelessness, or a lack of family support, are navigating their post-secondary careers independently. In previous roles, King had witnessed firsthand the emotional toll the lack of a supportive family structure takes on children. King based the Wily program on a model developed by the Casey Family Foundation that has been successfully implemented in 18 other states.
Wily Network Scholars arrive at college economically disadvantaged, just like many other students who qualify for Pell grants and are championed by their colleges. What sets Wily Scholars apart is the additional burden of being without family supports. As a result, they are often unprepared for the social, emotional and financial challenges they will face, beginning with the arrival of their roommate with parents who make their child’s bed and unpack their clothes.
Our mission is twofold:
- To ensure our Scholars have the tools and networks necessary to thrive in four-year residential colleges.
- To empower our Scholars to transition successfully into post-college life and become vibrant members of their communities.
The Wily Network provides a critical safety net and programming specifically designed to help Scholars achieve personal and financial well-being. As one Scholar described it, the Wily Network is ‘moving scholars from surviving to thriving’.