CIC/Walmart College Success Awards

Summer Bridge/Orientation Programs

Summer bridge programs are designed to help students prepare for the transition from previous academic experiences to the new, stiffer challenges they face as first-year college students. Because most colleges have enhanced their orientation programs for new students, some participating institutions expanded their usual orientation efforts into a “summer bridge” for first-generation students. These bridge programs range from a week or month in mid-summer to a dedicated two or three days just before regular orientation begins in the fall.

 
 
  • AT A GLANCE

    Location:
    Berea, KY

    Location Setting:
    Town

    FTE Enrollment:
    1,000–2,000

    Berea College’s CIC/Walmart College Success Award program focused on students from counties considered “distressed” by the Appalachian Regional Commission. Berea implemented a peer-mentoring program to help students integrate academic, work, and residential aspects of life on campus. Participating first-generation students also were paired with a faculty or staff mentor. In addition, incoming students were assessed for levels of self-efficacy on tasks essential to success in college so that students received immediate individualized guidance on ways to improve areas of deficiency. Learn More.

  • AT A GLANCE

    Location:
    Thousand Oaks, CA

    Location Setting:
    City

    FTE Enrollment:
    Over 3,000

    California Lutheran University targeted first-generation transfer students by strengthening efforts to improve their academic preparation and to integrate them into the university community. A cohort of first-generation transfer students was introduced into an already successful summer bridge program. These students also received scholarships and were actively recruited to participate in Student Support Services. In addition, the program provided students with opportunities to explore career and graduate school options. Learn More.

  • AT A GLANCE

    Location:
    Honolulu, HI

    Location Setting:
    City

    FTE Enrollment:
    2,000–3,000

    Chaminade’s CIC/Walmart College Success Award was used to support first-generation students in affording the university’s summer bridge program, which aims to help students improve reading, writing, and mathematics skills as well as to gain support in making the transition to college life and expectations. Chaminade also prepared native-language videos and brochures for three of the biggest cultural groups in the Pacific: American Samoa, Micronesia, and Native Hawaiian. These resources are particularly valuable in building connections with parents. Learn More.

  • AT A GLANCE

    Location:
    Duluth, MN

    Location Setting:
    City

    FTE Enrollment:
    Over 3,000

    The College of St. Scholastica's Project WISE (Walmart Initiative for Success in Education) provided trained faculty mentors and peer mentoring to first-generation students. WISE began with a Summer Launch, a two-day residential bridge event that included a luncheon for parents. WISE offered a succession of events designed to build links between mentors and mentees, including community service and a reception for parents at Homecoming/Family Weekend. A book stipend rewarded students for their participation. Outreach efforts were funded to expand enrollment of first-generation students. Learn More.

  • AT A GLANCE

    Location:
    Elizabethtown, PA

    Location Setting:
    Town

    FTE Enrollment:
    2,000–3,000

    Elizabethtown College’s Momentum program aimed to prepare and support first-generation students to successfully achieve an integrative, transformational liberal education. The program began with a ten-day orientation or summer bridge program in August supplemented with highly structured and intense advising by a staff advisor and peer academic advisers. Group tours to Philadelphia and Washington, DC, also were included in the program. The program was built on the first-year seminar program offered to all first-year students. Learn More.

  • AT A GLANCE

    Location:
    Boston, MA

    Location Setting:
    City

    FTE Enrollment:
    2,000–3,000

    CIC/Walmart funding supported ecEDGE, which began with a three-day summer bridge program for first-generation students and continued through the year with mentoring, support systems, and scheduled events. To strengthen the program the second cohort participated in an intensive two-week bridge. Called ecPULSE (Emmanuel College Program for Undergraduate Leadership and Scholarship Excellence), the program continued the workshops and mentoring of the ecEDGE program. Students received a $300 book stipend. Learn More.

  • AT A GLANCE

    Location:
    Eureka, IL

    Location Setting:
    Town

    FTE Enrollment:
    Under 1,000

    Eureka College’s CIC/Walmart Award initiative began with a three-day summer bridge program, “Early College Program in the Humanities and the Arts,” which aimed to expand students’ social and cultural capital so that they would understand how the liberal arts prepares one for a productive career and strengthens life chances. The program continued during the year to include peer mentors, bi-annual dinners where first-generation students met successful adults who were themselves first-generation students, a cultural events series, and an orientation session tailored for parents. Learn More.

  • AT A GLANCE

    Location:
    Franklin, IN

    Location Setting:
    Suburb

    FTE Enrollment:
    1,000–2,000

    The Franklin First Scholars and Franklin First Families programs aimed to raise first-generation student and family awareness of academic and social expectations of college, improve students’ and families’ ability to negotiate “college systems,” and create a network of contacts for the program participants. The programs targeted students from neighboring Johnson County and contiguous counties. The programs involved a summer bridge, an alumna/us mentor, special sections of a Leadership Seminar, programming to support students in setting goals, and events for families. Learn More.

  • AT A GLANCE

    Location:
    Jacksonville, IL

    Location Setting:
    Town

    FTE Enrollment:
    1,000–2,000

    Illinois College used its CIC/Walmart College Success Award to begin the Yates Fellowship Program. Yates Fellows are first-generation college students selected to participate in a two-week intensive summer bridge program, as well as a year-long learning community providing a jump start in the transition to college studies. Yates includes special coursework in math and English, and Yates Fellows are guided to use the college’s academic support services. Fellows are convened for a variety of activities. Learn More.

  • AT A GLANCE

    Location:
    Huntingdon, PA

    Location Setting:
    Town

    FTE Enrollment:
    1,000–2,000

    In Juniata College’s InBound First, Next Generation Scholars program, Pell-eligible first-generation students received Next Generation Scholarships for a one-week pre-orientation program. CIC/Walmart Award funds supported their participation and allowed students to recover some lost wages. The program was designed to help students become accustomed to campus life and to get to know other students with similar interests through participation in a summer retreat of their choice. The students received a stipend to help cover textbook and laboratory expenses during their first semester. Learn More.

  • AT A GLANCE

    Location:
    Lynchburg, VA

    Location Setting:
    City

    FTE Enrollment:
    2,000–3,000

    Building on existing first-semester programs for all new students, Lynchburg College’s Expand Your Horizons program began in January of the second semester with a retreat designed to develop group cohesion between first-generation students and faculty, staff, and peer mentors. Structured peer mentoring continued through the semester with regular meetings focused on helping students to develop their four-year plans. Each student enrolled in two courses that were linked, and each student received a $750 grant for an experiential learning opportunity. Learn More.

  • AT A GLANCE

    Location:
    North Manchester, IN

    Location Setting:
    Town

    FTE Enrollment:
    1,000–2,000

    Manchester University’s College Achievement Program (MCAP) focused on high school juniors and seniors who would be the first in their families to earn a college degree. These students were enrolled at nine high schools in the university’s area. The program included a series of six workshops, opportunities for campus overnight events, one-on-one assistance, a three-day summer program, and mentoring. Parents were involved, too, to gain their support for their student’s participation. The program also included book awards and scholarships. Learn More.

  • AT A GLANCE

    Location:
    Ripon, WI

    Location Setting:
    Town

    FTE Enrollment:
    Under 1,000

    Ripon College’s summer bridge program, a three-day early orientation program for first-generation students, was created to form the basis for improved retention and graduation rates for these students. The bridge created a support network with other first-year students and staff and faculty members, and it included reading and writing workshops. During the academic year, peer mentors and tutors provided further support, and students undertook a career shadowing experience. Book, travel, and meal vouchers provided incentives for participation. Learn More.

  • AT A GLANCE

    Location:
    Rosemont, PA

    Location Setting:
    Suburb

    FTE Enrollment:
    Under 1,000

    Rosemont College’s five-day summer bridge program, Success and Motivation, introduced first-generation students to its program, which included classes in study skills and orientation, college writing, and college reading. Participants also met their mentors who worked with them through the first year. The program offered a first-year seminar, study sessions, and workshops as well as a four-day session over spring break. The program also engaged parents and alumni. A $725 stipend was awarded to those completing the program. Learn More.

  • AT A GLANCE

    Location:
    Austin, TX

    Location Setting:
    City

    FTE Enrollment:
    Over 3,000

    The St. Edward’s University Bridge to College Success was a four-week summer orientation for first-generation students, most of them the children of migrant workers. The 17 participants were given stipends to enable them to come to the campus for the bridge experience in June. Participants followed a demanding daily lineup of reading, writing, and math lessons with tutoring in the evening. Older first-generation students served as peer mentors, and on weekends the group toured cultural sites in Austin. Learn More.

  • AT A GLANCE

    Location:
    Waterville, ME

    Location Setting:
    Rural

    FTE Enrollment:
    Under 1,000

    Thomas College used its CIC/Walmart College Success Award to develop EDGE, a week-long summer bridge program offered in August. EDGE included an intensive college course, Foundations of Quantitative Analysis, and offered workshops for first-generation students as well as peer tutoring and a one-day service project. Students in EDGE continued to meet with academic coaches throughout the fall semester. Each student completing the bridge program received a $500 book stipend. Learn More.

  • AT A GLANCE

    Location:
    Joliet, IL

    Location Setting:
    City

    FTE Enrollment:
    2,000–3,000

    The University of St. Francis University Success Scholars Program had four components: the option of participating in a five-day Summer Academy bridge program or meeting with a peer or faculty mentor through the first semester; tutoring, workshops, cultural field trips, social events, and student-faculty engagement opportunities; activities and workshops to help students hone their leadership skills; and financial assistance through book vouchers and a computer (laptop) loan program. Learn More.