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“The Climb” Airs Sunday

Studio 501(c)(3) episode “The Climb” premieres on Sunday at 9:30 a.m. here on the Montgomery Channel 21.

So you’re smart, ambitious and dedicated to building a successful life for yourself. If, however, you need money for college, or you are the first in your family to have the opportunity, getting in and graduating can be harder for you. Test preparation, essay writing, applying for and getting financial aid – individually and together, they can seem like real barriers to achieving your dream. But there’s help…

Collegiate Directions, Inc. (CDI) is a nonprofit organization that tutors and mentors first-generation or lower income high schoolers as they climb that mountain – a college degree.


Nina Marks is the founder of CDI. A professional educator and consultant, she and her organization have achieved a stunning 98 percent college acceptance and graduation success rate!

Merab Okeyo successfully graduated with a nursing degree, with the guidance and support of CDI. Originally from Kenya, Merab is planning a career in public health. Mirko Fernandez-Valdez arrived from Cuba only about fours years ago, but he worked so hard to learn English and to prepare for college that he is now earning his Accounting degree.

Brooke Fernandez is a CDI trainer with a background in college admissions application review and advising, and she was a key contributor to the creation of CDI.

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