California State University, Fullerton

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A 'Bridge' Between High School and College

Summer Program Prepares Freshmen for University Experience

July 18, 2013

For six weeks, 86 incoming Cal State Fullerton freshmen will be experiencing what it's like to live and attend college, thanks to the University's Summer Bridge program.

Participants live in campus housing Sunday through Thursday and attend two courses, such as English or mathematics to improve their skills, and/or another course that fulfills general education requirements.

In addition, participants also attend workshops that help them with study and other skills to prepare them for college courses. Participating students also learn about student clubs and campus services, network with faculty and staff, and receive information about other perks of campus life.

"The goal is acclimate them to campus life and to set them up with the skills to be successful on campus and in their course," said Andrianna R. Martinez, Bridge program resident coordinator. Martinez, a 2013 graduate with a master's degree in higher education, is living in the residence halls during the summer program, as do resident counselors, who serve as mentors, organize group activities and provide a support system, working much like a family.

And the programs works, according to two 2012 participants.

"You get a real taste of what college is like and you don't have to do it alone. We learned jus how valuable networking is," said Alejandra Torres-Rubio, a sophomore English major. "Summer Bridge for me was a lead-in for my upcoming college experience."

"My Summer Bridge experience helped me get acquainted with the school and its various resources before my freshman year. It was a great learning experience," said Angelique Quintero, a biological science major. "It not only showed me how college would be like, but it taught me time management, studying tips and how to manage a social life, while maintaining good grades and still being able to get involved in campus organizations. Summer Bridge gave me a peace of mind entering college and I am very grateful for it."

Summer Bridge is a program offered to students in the statewide Educational Opportunity Program that provides financial and academic support to students whose families are challenged by economic barriers and need admissions and/or counseling services to succeed in college. At CSUF, participants receive pre-admission counseling, admission assistance, referrals for tutorial learning, career guidance, financial aid advisement and other student services.

By: Pamela McLaren, 657-278-4852

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