Freshmen Complete Summer Training Program


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NEWBURGH – Incoming freshmen enrolled in Mount Saint Mary College’s Higher Education Opportunity Program (HEOP) recently got a jumpstart on their college career through the Summer Academic Institute.

Accepted Mount HEOP students are required to complete the weekslong Summer Academic Institute prior to their freshman year, jumpstarting their sense of community. The institute focuses on preparing HEOP students for college life through academic and leadership training, acclimation with academic resources, overcoming challenges as a group, and more.

This summer, the seven Mount HEOP students focused on a project to cultivate their leadership skills. They were tasked with creating a strategic plan to recruit and retain a diverse staff for a fictional university on a $10,000 budget.

Mount Saint Mary College incoming HEOP freshman present their HEOP SAI Final Presentation on July 28, 2022 in Aquinas 163. The students have been working on a strategic plan to recruit and retain a diverse staff for a fictional university that is struggling in terms of DEI. Photo: Lee Ferris
Mount Saint Mary College incoming HEOP freshman present their HEOP SAI Final Presentation on July 28, 2022 in Aquinas 163.
The students have been working on a strategic plan to recruit and retain a diverse staff for a fictional university that is struggling in terms of DEI. Photo: Lee Ferris

The project aimed to increase the students’ critical thinking skills, help them to work effectively in a group setting, and conduct meaningful research based on real-world situations.

At the end of July, the seven students presented their final group projects to the Mount community. The projects consisted of a 10-minute PowerPoint presentation, an infographic or video advertisement, and a reflection paper.

The Mount’s HEOP provides educational opportunities and support to traditionally underserved students who have strong academic potential, but would otherwise be excluded from higher education due to circumstances of academic and economic disadvantage.

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