On June 17, parents, faculty and supporters gathered alongside Congresswoman Lisa Blunt Rochester to celebrate as 31 rising college freshmen graduated from the rigorous Delaware College Scholars program. Milford resident Jessica Creigh, who is attending University of Delaware next year, is one of the graduates.
“The students and teachers involved with the Delaware College Scholars program exemplify the reasons I am so confident about our future. In my position on the House Education and The Workforce Committee, I am consistently looking for ways we can enhance educational opportunities and innovative initiatives. This group is leading the path forward in those ways and showing us how to take action,” said Congresswoman Blunt Rochester.
Graduates, who come from low-income families and are often the first in their family to attend college, spent three weeks, three summers in a row, at St. Andrew’s School in Middletown where they lived and studied together in a cohort-based program. While immersed in the college-like residential atmosphere at St. Andrew’s School, the students received college mentorship, learned about and visited different colleges, and formed lasting relationships with their peer groups while tackling an intensive reading, writing and discussion-based curriculum. In the program, students applied to college with the help of one-on-one advising, learned about financial aid and scholarships, selected the college of their choice and created a plan to complete a successful freshman year of college. This year, graduates of the program are attending Cornell University, Wesleyan University, Lehigh University, University of Delaware, and Delaware State University, among others.
While only eight percent of Delaware students from low income families attend four-year institutions of higher education, ninety-two percent of Delaware College Scholars, who all come from low-income families, have gone on to a four-year institution of higher education.
“Our students have worked extremely hard for the past three summers and I am proud to celebrate them and this accomplishment. Thanks to our partnership with St. Andrew’s and the Delaware Department of Education, we have created a statewide opportunity for the best and brightest students in Delaware to excel in college academically and socially,” said Dr. Tony Alleyne, Director, Delaware College Scholars.
Delaware College Scholars (DCS) is a tuition-free, residential, college preparatory program for high-achieving 10th through 12th graders from Delaware families of low income. The mission of DCS is to recruit and prepare (both academically and socially) high-performing Delaware high school students from families of low income for applying to, becoming accepted by, and graduating from competitive colleges and universities. Preference is given to first generation college-bound students. Founded by the Delaware Department of Education and St. Andrew’s School, Delaware College Scholars is led by Dr. Tony Alleyne, Executive Director. Learn more about DCS at http://delawarecollegescholars.com.