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High School – College Prep

High School Students | College Prep

We coach our high school students to ensure their completion of college preparatory coursework to achieve CSU and UC eligibility. We also provide standardized test preparation, college application preparation, financial aid workshops, and access to summer enrichment opportunities and internships.

First Graduate provides all students with one-on-one coaching as they research college options and supports families as they navigate the college application process.

We take high school Sophomores and Juniors on a week-long tour of UC, CSU, and private college campuses in the Bay Area and southern California as they prepare to apply for college. We host college presentations and organize college application workshops that expose our students to the wide array of college options outside of California.

Throughout high school First Graduate staff and volunteers provide after school tutoring and enrichment with the goal of helping students attain a GPA of 3.3 or higher.

Students meet once each month for Advisory, a staff-facilitated after-school program that focuses on career and college readiness and preparation. Students make the connection between the effort that they put into their studies in the present and the long-term benefits of obtaining a college degree.

In high school, students develop tangible career readiness skills, which helps that obtain and succeed in their first summer internships and beyond. Additionally, students will have access to a network of professionals in careers that interest them through large-scale career events.

Specific program activities include:

First Career Workshops

A series of workshops designed to develop career readiness skills, such as resume writing, job interview techniques, professional communication, career assessments, personal branding, and networking.

 Oh, the Places You’ll Go – Career Panels

A panel of diverse professionals, from university professors to nutritionists to engineers, shares with their career stories with students and provide concrete details about their career pathway.

 Exploring the Possibilities

Annual event aimed at exposing students to a variety of industries or “possibilities”. This event is hosted in collaboration with industry-leading companies that create and present an interactive workshop for the students. Companies involved in ETP 2014 included PG&E, Golub Group, Gap, Airbnb, Digitas, and LinkedIn.

 Summer Opportunities Fair

First Graduate partners with a diverse group of community partners which offer job and internship opportunity for youth. At the annual Summer Opportunities Fair, high school students connect and network with these organizations as they work towards securing an exciting summer opportunity that will allow them to gain new skills and knowledge.

First Graduate provides one-on-one coaching to students applying for a variety of scholarships offered by our scholarship partners and funders. We also help students research additional scholarships options, successfully complete and submit applications, and we provide personal statement and essay coaching.

During monthly advisories, our staff makes sure that students have the tools they need to calculate their financial aid needs, read financial aid letters, apply for assistance (FAFSA, California DREAM Act, etc), and make informed financial aid decisions. First Graduate also offers bilingual financial aid workshops for parents throughout the year.

First Graduate provides bilingual workshops and counseling preparing for entrance exams and strategies for improving test taking skills.

Students participate in a nine-week SAT preparation course through Tutorpedia where they learn how to write a timed essay, expand their vocabulary with an emphasis on words commonly tested on the SATs, and increase their test-taking strategies. At the end of the course, every student will have gained an understanding of his or her individual strengths and weaknesses, and developed a study plan tailored to these areas.

First Graduate pays for students to take two college preparatory exams (SAT or ACT).