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SMART Scholars Summer Residential Program

Summer 2013, UAlbany Campus

“Twenty-three students came, twenty-three left with a college credit
and we couldn’t be prouder.”
– Chris Fernando

Through a collaborative effort between the Albany City School District, Albany High School, the SMART Scholars Program and the University at Albany Science & Technology Entry Program, the Summer Residential Program was created. The Smart Scholars Early College High School Program was developed to increase high school graduation rates and college completion rates for underrepresented students. By allowing high school students to earn college credit, our hopes are to inspire these young scholars to achieve throughout their senior year and beyond.

The purpose of the Summer Residential Program was to give the rising seniors in the Albany City School District the opportunity to familiarize themselves with college life. The program lasted three weeks and was quite an experience. Twenty-three high school students enrolled into the program and became UAlbany students, living on one of the four main quads of the UAlbany campus, Dutch Quad. They attended classes and learned the essentials to succeed during their first year of college.

Another advantage of the Summer Residential Program was that it made the students more independent and responsible. Students that were nervous or disliked the idea of going away for school learned that they could live away from home. Understanding how rigorous and stressful a college workload can be, students learned how to manage their time more efficiently and effectively. By the completion of the program, the students learned how to be independent and competent college students.

Our high school students developed life-long bonds with our student staff who served as Resident Assistants (RA) during their stay. Not only did the RA’s oversee the students, but they also provided day-to-day mentoring to assist them with their transition into college. To this day, our summer student staff remain in close contact with the high school students, as they ready themselves for the next stage of their lives.

Source: UAlbany STEP


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