A free Grand Rapids Community College program preparing graduating seniors for college has launched its second year.
Bridges to College-Raider Ready is a five-week program that runs two sessions over the summer. The first of this year begins June 6 and runs through July 8. The second session begins July 11 and ends Aug. 12.
Bridges to College is offered at Grand Rapids Community College’s (GRCC) main campus at 143 Bostwick Ave. NE in Grand Rapids, as well as its lakeshore campus at 12335 James St. in Holland.
The program is offered in person and is open to high school graduates of 2021 and 2022 who plan to attend GRCC this fall. Bridges to College will offer students breakfast, bus passes to and from the program’s campus classes, learning materials, several field trips, and use of a laptop and Wi-Fi hotspot while enrolled.
The program’s 2021 summer season showed nearly 80% of the 170 students who completed the program improved academically. Students said the program helped them feel more confident in their abilities and gave them valuable knowledge about support services the college offers.
“It’s important for students to start college successfully, then continue building on that strong foundation,” said GRCC President Bill Pink. “We’re continuing this program because it works. We want students to come here, thrive and finish what they started. Bridges to College-Raider Ready helps students prepare to do exactly that.”
Bridges to College is aimed at boosting foundational math and reading skills that will set students up for college success. Enrolled students also will meet with advisers, learn about financial aid options and gain career-readiness skills.
“This program is an example of how GRCC serves our community,” said Brian Knetl, provost, GRCC. “It’s an excellent opportunity for students to get a head start on their college education in terms of academics, but also getting to know all the resources on campus and (to) meet the people who are here to help.”
Students are accepted into the program on a first-come, first-served basis. Those interested can apply here.