Academic Clark Excellence Summer Institute

Clark University (MA)

The Academic Clark Excellence (ACE) Summer Institute assists ALANA (African, Latino, Asian and Native American) students and first generation students who have been admitted to the university. Beginning in the summer, the ACE program maps a clearer path to college persistence and graduation, helping students become acclimated to the campus and become part of a community that includes peers, mentors, faculty, and staff.

Participants complete intensive courses in pre-calculus or calculus, writing, and psychology; learn how to work in a science lab; meet professors; and have discussion sessions on opportunities within various majors. During the school year, students prepare individual written academic plans, which are reviewed annually. Clark University students find support in study groups for class projects and in workshops that provide strategies for success in courses that often see high failure rates.

Participants also develop leadership skills, and learn about opportunities for internships, research projects, and graduate school. Peer mentors as well as a staffed resource room provide extra support. Monthly workshops address such topics as budgeting, financial aid, and resume building. Parents receive communications on student success and invitations to special events.

Bottom Line:  University data show exceptionally high persistence rates of ACE students relative to ACE-eligible students who didn't participate.

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