Monday, August 20, 2012

Educational Opportunity Program: A Family Away From Home

The best mentor group ever!  Top row, left to right: Lorenzo, Fidel, and Marivel.
 Front row: Diana, Carolina, Houa, and Rebecca.
Universities can sometimes feel like big, impersonal places, and  it's easy to get lost in the crowd when you're one of many students.  Just as great majors and amazing professors are a part of a quality education, great friendships and lots of support ensures that your first year at university will be off to a strong start. 

One way Chico State tries to help its new students thrive is though it's Educational Opportunity Program.  EOP has a lot of really practical ways of helping students adjust to university life.   For example, there's the Summer Bridge residential program.  Summer Bridge is held a few weeks before the beginning of classes.  Students come to Chico State early and get a jump start on making friends, meeting faculty and staff, all while taking workshops that teach them how to be an on-point college student.  Students can access a lot of other services throughout the year as well. Tutoring, workshops and socials are all part of the EOP experiance.   Best of all, EOP staff genuinely care about you as an individual and work hard to support you through the beginning, middle and end of your college experience.

How do can you become an EOP student? You have to apply!  Students must submit the regular fall application for admission during the October 1st- November 30th period. Then students must fill out the EOP application. This absolutely has to be done by the November 30th deadline!   If you don't turn in both applications you won't be considered as a candidate for EOP.   In order to qualify for EOP, students have to meet specific criteria and submit two letters of recommendation and an autobiographical essay.
Building a strong foundation.  Bottom row, left to right Jasmin, Fidel, Marivel and Lorenzo.  Top row: Rebecca, Carolina and Houa. 

 It's definitely a lot more work to become an EOP student, but the skills you learn and relationships you build are so worth the extra effort!  For many students EOP has become a central part of their college experience and their "family" away from home.  Do you want to be on the fast track to amazing friendships and success?  Explore the Educational Opportunity Program at Chico State!