CUNY Start is an intensive program for incoming associate-degree seeking college students who need to increase their academic proficiency in reading, writing and mathematics prior to enrollment in college credit classes. The CUNY Office of Academic Affairs, the University’s community colleges, Medgar Evers College, and the College of Staten Island work collaboratively to provide students with an innovative approach to developmental education. CUNY Start offers daytime and afternoon/evening programs, relies on data and research to guide program practice and is recognized for its carefully designed curriculum and pedagogy, ongoing professional development and mentor-based training model.
CUNY Start has received a four-year grant from the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation to serve transition aged youth from foster care who wish to pursue associate degrees at CUNY, but who have significant remedial needs in reading, writing, and/or math based on their CUNY Assessment Test scores. The grant will support the development of strategic partnerships with foster care agencies and the New York City Administration for Children’s Services (ACS) to create a graduation college success pipeline for 325 college-bound foster care youth into CUNY Start and the University’s acclaimed Accelerated Study in Associate Programs (ASAP). In CUNY Start and ASAP, Foster Care students will receive MetroCards, on-campus internships and other supports to ensure timely graduation from college. Along with creating a college success pipeline for youth from foster care, the lessons learned from the project’s partnerships will be incorporated into CUNY Start’s advisement curriculum and training protocol. The grant also includes a research and evaluation agenda that will be led by CUNY’s Office of Research, Evaluation, and Program Supports (REPS). REPS will work with key stakeholders to establish important research projects, lead focus groups, and establish benchmarks and goals for youth from foster care to succeed and graduate from CUNY.
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