University of Indianapolis Supported Programs
Early College High School Network (grades 9-12). The Center of Excellence in Leadership of Learning (CELL) at the University of Indianapolis maintains an Early College High School Network under a grant from the National Governors Association (NGA) through the state of Indiana. Sixteen grantee school corporations and an additional eight other schools meet together as a part of this network to share best practices for this model, which is designed to encourage and motivate students to enroll in college with the prospect of enhanced success in completing a degree. These schools target students traditionally underrepresented in postsecondary education and allow them to earn both a high school diploma and up to two years of credit toward a college degree. Paired with a college or university partner, these high schools are places for rigorous teaching and learning designed to help young people progress toward the education and experience they need to succeed in a 21st-century global economy. Early College High Schools make college an option for all students by creating an accessible, affordable bridge to higher education. Three Indianapolis Early College High Schools are designated as CELL-certified implementations of this model; they are, Ben Davis University High School, the Charles A. Tindley Academy, and the Lawrence Early College for Science and Technologies.
New Tech High School Network (grades 9-12). CELL also maintains a network for New Tech High Schools under the state's NGA grant. Statewide, six New Tech High Schools are currently open with two more slated to open in the fall of 2009. In addition, it is anticipated that between 10 and 16 additional New Tech High Schools will open in 2010 throughout Indiana. The New Tech High School is a small-school model that incorporates a project-based instructional design, one-to-one computing with a web-based portal of tools in which students attend integrated classes in double classrooms and work in cooperative groups. The New Tech High School model engages students in their own learning and includes a significant dual credit requirement in preparing students for the rigors of postsecondary learning and success in college completion. Two Indianapolis schools currently employ the New Tech High School Model: New Tech @ Arsenal Tech and the Decatur School of IDEAS at Decatur Central High School.
High School-to-College Project (grades 9-12). CELL is concluding the second year of a three-year policy study and advocacy process for high school to college transition programs in Indiana funded by a grant from the Lumina Foundation for Education. This project includes the identification and removal of policy barriers for Indiana students, school corporations, and universities for dual credit, Advanced Placement, and International Baccalaureate programs. To date, CELL has leveraged policy improvements for these three programs by working with a large and diverse advisory committee composed of individuals from Indiana school corporations and colleges, governmental officials, union officials, legislators, and others in supporting recommendations to the State Board of Education, the Commission for Higher Education, and the Indiana legislature as well as Indiana schools and universities. Through this work, it is CELL's mission to develop a policy environment for Indiana in which students can earn significant college credits while in high school in order to make their transition into college and completion of a degree more successful.
Bridge Scholars' Program at UIndy (grades 9-12). The Bridge Scholars' Program began in 1997 as part of the ENABLE grant funded through the Lilly Endowment. The primary goals of the Bridge Scholars' Program are: (1) assisting at-risk but capable high school students to envision a college education as a reality, (2) helping to ease the transition from high school to college, and (3) providing support services, encouragement, and assistance to Bridge participants who enroll at the University of Indianapolis so that they can successfully achieve their educational goals.
High School counselors recommend seniors who meet the criteria as listed below. The Bridge Scholars' Program is currently active in the following 11 area high schools: Arlington, Arsenal Technical, Broad Ripple, Ben Davis, Decatur Central, Franklin Central, George Washington Community School, Northwest, Emmerich Manual, Roncalli, and Warren Central High Schools. Bridge students are admitted to the university through the same admissions process and procedures as all other high school students. The initial qualifying criteria for the Bridge Scholars' Program are: seniors in high school, Twenty-First Century Scholars, GPA of at least 2.7 on an 4.0 scale, on a Core 40 diploma track by the end of their junior year and qualify as "high potential," but who may need assistance in making the transition from high school to college, have difficulty visualizing college as a true possibility, not have a family tradition of college attendance, or face social, personal or cultural barriers.
The goal of the high school component of the Bridge Scholars' Program is to "demystify" the university experience for students unfamiliar with college life. This is done through a variety of activities and campus visits. During the first campus visit, the students are introduced to the various campus offices and receive a tour of campus. During another visit, the students shadow current university students to classes and around campus to get an idea of what a typical college student's day is like. Meetings are also held with parents to help them understand the processes involved in applying to colleges and to help them with completion of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
Partnership with College Summit (grades 9-12). Each year, the University of Indianapolis partners with College Summit through the Uindy Lugar Center for Tomorrow's Leaders. College Summit is a program that builds the capacity of schools to dramatically increase college attendance both school- and district- wide. Trained student influencers build college-going culture, while teachers and counselors use managed curriculum and technology tools to help all students create postsecondary plans and apply to college. College Summit trains student leaders to help build a college-going culture in their high schools. Twenty percent of the rising senior class of participant high schools attends a four-day summer workshop at the University of Indianapolis where they get a head start on college applications by learning how to effectively write a personal statement, meeting one-on-one with an admission counselor, learning the basics of financial aid, and gaining concrete skills in self-advocacy. Armed with real experience, these students then return to their schools and spread their enthusiasm to their peers. The trained students serve as mentors to fellow seniors and encourage them to apply to college. In 2008, students who attended the College Summit workshop at the University of Indianapolis were from Manual, Howe, and Decatur Central high schools. Also in 2008, the College Summit peer leaders in Indiana were invited to attend the 2008 Lugar Symposium for Tomorrow's Leaders, which is hosted by the University of Indianapolis. The symposium provided these future leaders of Indiana with an opportunity to learn more about current national and international issues. The 2009 College Summit Workshops hosted by the University of Indianapolis will be held on July 16-19 and July 23-26.