learn / 2015

College Bridge Program for Graduating High School Seniors

College Bridge Program for Graduating High School Seniors

Idea submitted in the My LA2050 Maker Challenge by The Ripple Effect

The Ripple Effect will offer a summer bridge program for graduating high school seniors to prepare them for college. The program will include academic and college readiness preparation. Students who successfully complete the program will receive a stipend.


In what areas of Los Angeles will you be directly working?

  • City of Los Angeles
  • Southeast L.A. County, including Whittier, Santa Fe Springs, Pico Rivera

How do you plan to use these resources to make change?

  • Implement a pilot or new project

How will your proposal improve the following “Learn” metrics?

  • Student education pipeline (an integrated network of pre-schools, K-12 institutions, and higher education systems that prepares students for seamless transitions between high school, higher ed

Describe in greater detail how you will make LA the best place to learn.

Graduating high school seniors experience what researchers are calling “The Summer Melt”. Summer Melt is that period between graduating high school and starting college, where students who are college eligible or who have already been accepted to college, will not enroll in classes for the fall semester. Recent studies by Harvard University’s Center for Education Policy Research found that an estimated 20 percent of graduating seniors from urban school districts in places such as greater Boston, suburban Atlanta, Dallas and Fort Worth, Texas, abandon their plans to attend college over the summer. The Ripple Effect will create a 3-week summer bridge program for graduating high school seniors to address this educational concern. Focusing on first generation college students, the bridge program will focus on developing basic math and English skills, and college readiness skills (time management, study techniques, financial aid, creating schedule of classes, etc.). These sessions will be taught by an English and a math teacher, and by a college counselor. Students will also participate in weekly field trips to different cultural and/or educational events and/or locations. These field trips will be chaperoned by volunteers and the college counselor. We will offer 2 bridge sessions, with 30 students in each session. Students that successfully complete the program will receive a $300 stipend. We will also provide a monthly Metro pass for those students in need of reliable transportation. Beyond the bridge program, the coordinator will follow up with students during their first year of college. They will be responsible for assisting students as they navigate their various college systems. Our goal is to assist these 1st time college students successfully make the transition into college. And by providing follow up services throughout the 1st year, we believe that students will be more likely to continue onto their 2nd year of college.

Please explain how you will evaluate your work.

We have two objectives we want to measure. (1) Can The Ripple Effect through the summer bridge program assist 60 young people transition into their first semester of college. (2) If we provide follow up services through the first year, how many students can we assist to be academically successful and persist into their 2nd year of college. After the summer bridge program is over, we will assess how many students enroll in and attend their fall classes. If students did not enroll in classes, or enrolled in classes, but did not attend their fall classes, we will follow up with students to better understand why they did not enroll or attend classes. Once students complete their spring semester, we will assess again if students plan to enroll for their 2nd year of college. We will communicate with students either via e-mail and/or phone call. By gathering this data, the organization can assess the areas of weakness and strength in our program, and where we can make improvements.

How can the LA2050 community and other stakeholders help your proposal succeed?

  • Money (financial capital)
  • Publicity/awareness (social capital)
  • Community outreach
  • Network/relationship support