University of South Florida - Sarasota-Manatee

04/03/2024 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 04/04/2024 06:06

Pathway programs ensure that dreams to attend USF don’t have to be deferred

Pathway programs ensure that dreams to attend USF don't have to be deferred

By Donna Smith, University Communications and Marketing

Many students dream of going to college after high school, but fear that it's just not for them. More than 300 students who recently attended USF's College Preview Day event learned about the many ways USF is working to remove barriers to help them earn a degree.

"We bring them here to share some of our pathway programs," said Malcolm Randolph, USF's director of special populations, who earned his bachelor's degree at USF as a Student Support Services scholar. "We also let them know about resources and opportunities for funding a college education and getting help with their studies."

Largo High School students stream into the Marshall Student Center for College Preview Day.

USF offers a myriad of pathway programs for students who need a stronger support system to be successful in college.

Guaranteed Admissions Pathway Program

USF partners with 18 Title I high schools across the region to offer the Guaranteed Admissions Pathway Program, which provides opportunities to students from underrepresented, first-generation and special populations. Through GAPP, students at partnering high schools who have met GPA and SAT or ACT score requirements are guaranteed admission to any of USF's three campuses.

GAPP students also get priority consideration for the History of Achievement Scholarship, which can award them up to $2,000.

Student Support Services

Offered on the Tampa and St. Petersburg campuses, Student Support Services assists first-generation, low-income students and/or those who lack the GPA or test scores for traditional admission. SSS offers financial, academic and counseling services, as well as career exploration and support throughout a student's college journey. SSS begins with a free summer program where students live in a residence hall and earn up to nine credit hours before the fall semester, all while making friends and learning the intricacies of a successful college experience.

Ryan Brown, a junior from Jacksonville, looks over a brochure outlining freshman pathways at USF with his father, Trisston Brown.

New Bulls Scholars

The New Bulls Scholars program helps students who are the first in their families to attend college, and/or those who overcome hardships, achieve success in their first year of college. Similar to SSS, New Bulls Scholars begin with a summer residential program designed to enrich them both academically and socially. Upon successful completion of the summer program, students are granted admission to USF. The program emphasizes critical thinking and research skills and provides academic support throughout the students' journey. NBS students are also eligible for a scholarship to be used for tuition, as well as room and dining plans.

College Assistance Migrant Program

Students from migrant and seasonal farmworker backgrounds can apply for the College Assistance Migrant Program to help them transition to and complete their first year of college. Participants receive pre-enrollment services to help with university and financial aid applications and get academic support, such as advising and tutoring, peer mentoring to help with adjustment to campus life, and in some cases, financial assistance. They also participate in cultural activities to help them meet new friends.

Garious Goshay, a teacher from Largo High School in Pinellas County, brought two buses full of students to College Preview Day, in hopes that they might find inspiration and start thinking about what they'll do beyond high school.

"I believe it's important for them to have this kind of exposure so that they can know what's available to them and make good decisions about college," Goshay said. "I'd like to bring even more next year."

Aniya Price (left) and her friend Chelsea Mills had a chance to explore the Tampa campus during the College Preview Day event.

Aniya Price, a high school junior from Gainesville who attended the event, said that by the end of the day, she was ready to be a Bull.

"It seems like a very supportive environment here," Price said. "There are a lot of people and groups at USF who are willing to help - you just have to reach out."

The next College Preview Day will be held in Fall 2024. Interested schools can reach out for more information at [email protected], or check the College Preview Day website for updates.

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