like what mall girls do | Socates
The graduation of the first class of
Community Scholars is a significant milestone in TCU's commitment to diversity.
Stowe Master '91
Pena arrived at
TCU in fall 2000, she wondered if she had gotten in over her head. Now,
with degree in hand, the Northside High School alumna and first-generation
college student plans to enter medical school in 2005.
at a school not known for diversity, Pena is just one of the success stories
in the Community Scholars Program. Determined to attract qualified students
from local high schools who otherwise might not consider TCU, administrators
in 2000 identified six Fort Worth-area high schools and offered full-ride
scholarships to top students. Eight in the first class of 12 graduate
this spring. The other four do so next year. Three additional schools
are being added to the list next year.
Scholars Program now has 56 students, a handsome scholarship commitment
and strong inroads into diversifying enrollment. The program includes:
- More than
$1 million in scholarships, which pays 60 percent of the cost of tuition,
room and board. Other academic scholarships and/or financial aid cover
nearly all of the remaining expenses.
academic and personal support.
access to Freshman Seminars and the Chancellor's Leadership Program.
opportunities for graduate-style faculty mentoring, research and scholarly
work through the Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Program.
financial assistance has made this program extremely effective, Pena said.
"It's much more than a scholarship program. They gave us money, but they
gave us a lot more -- they gave us support throughout our years here. And
I think that's really important."
for success begins almost immediately with an intense summer program to
smooth the transition from high school. That support then continues every
step of the way.
hands-on," said Darron Turner, associate dean of student development.
"There are very few students in the program we don't see at least once
a week, whether they're just stopping by to say hello or they have a question.
We're actively involved in what they're doing."
Scholars have faculty and student mentors and access to tutors, computers,
workshops and cultural events, as well as opportunities for leadership
training, internships and study abroad programs.
it's very easy to come in and get a scholarship and be lost and not know
where to go," Turner said. "One of the things we found out is that failing
in universities doesn't always have as much to do with ability as much
as not knowing where to go for the right resources. So we try to take
some of those issues off the table for them. They know for sure they have
at least one person they can call and ask a question." The increased diversity
on campus that the program offers benefits everyone, said Cornell Thomas,
professor and special assistant to the chancellor for diversity and community.
"If we can
create a global community here on campus, we can prepare all of our students
for the global community they're going to live in," Thomas said. "I can't
overemphasize that if schools are not preparing students for the kind
of environment they're going to live in, then schools are not doing their
express their appreciation. Elizabeth Surita, one of the spring graduates,
plans to work on a master's in speech language pathology at the University
of Houston. She said she has watched both the program and the students
a lot. I've become more outspoken, more outgoing," she said. "The program
has definitely put me in a lot of positions where I've had to be a leader
and be a representative of not only the program but also of TCU, and that's
helped me grow as a person."
more information about Community Scholars, call 817-257-7796 or email
Hill-Jarvis, Fort Worth
Sam Houston, Arlington
North Side, Fort Worth
Polytechnic, Fort Worth
O.D. Wyatt, Fort Worth
Three schools being added for the 2005-06 academic year:
South Hills, Fort Worth
Trimble Technical, Fort Worth