In 2007, Rutgers University established Future Scholars program, a 5-year college preparatory course that would help New Jersey students living at or near the poverty line.
Educational experiment makes big difference
The program would accept up to 200 of those students as 7th-graders and provide tutoring, mentoring, and specialized classes in the hope of putting them on the right track to a university education.
If students kept up with the program and were qualified to Rutgers, they would get a donation-funded scholarship and be able to attend college free of charge.
Of the 183 students who were part of the Future Scholars inaugural class, which graduated this June, 163 will go to college, 98 of them with full scholarship to Rutgers, according to the New Jersey Star-Ledger.
Bring the idea to other communities
“It even beats the state graduation rate,” Courtney McAnuff, Rutgers’ VP of enrollment management, told the paper. “It’s just been phenomenal.”
The scholarship program currently accepts 50 students from four cities, but the university hopes to bring the program to communities around the country.
Rutgers will conduct a national conference in November to help create similar programs elsewhere.