The College Crusade of Rhode Island

College Crusade of Rhode Island
College Crusade of Rhode Island
Rhode Island
Academic Level
Community-Based Organization
Issue Area
Key Personnel
Program Focus
College Prep,


The College Crusade is Rhode Island’s largest college access program aimed at increasing high school graduation, college readiness, and college completion for students from the state’s low-income communities. They focus on reducing remediation rates among college-going students, promoting early college coursework, and improving families’ knowledge of post-secondary options. Latino students make up 70% of the students served with a majority of students identifying as first-generation and living predominantly in Spanish-speaking household.

Program Description

Students enroll in the College Crusade in the 6th grade and receive ongoing services into their undergraduate college years. They provide personalized support through 29 advisors who operate in 37 middle schools, high schools, and at the state’s three public colleges. Advisors are full-time college readiness professionals, many of whom share a similar lived experience. They provide over 60 programs to meet students’ academic, social and emotional development, career exploration, and college preparation needs. College Crusade also provides direct college scholarships and has awarded nearly $19 million to 2,175 Latino students.

They serve over 1,400 families a year through one-on-one meetings, parent councils, family forums, and 100 workshops that build parents’ financial literacy skills and capacity to advocate for their children’s success. All family engagement programming is presented by native speakers in both Spanish and English.


Between 2010 and 2017, students’ on-time high school graduation rates increased from 69% to 86% and now exceeds the state rate of 84%.

During the same time period, students’ immediate college enrollment rates increased from 50% to 84%, well above the state rate of 59%.

Students’ first-year college persistence rates have exceeded the rates for all students at the state’s public colleges for over a decade, most recently by 8 percentage points (84% vs. 76%).

Analysis by Drexel University finds, from the point of entry in sixth grade, Latino students in their program are 7.4% more likely to graduate high school on time, 27% more likely to immediately enroll in college, and 43% more likely to persist to a second year of college than Latino students in the comparison group.

Findings among Latino students are similar to overall findings for College Crusade students vs. comparison group students, where 11% are more likely to graduate high school on time, 30% are more likely to enroll college immediately after graduation, and 39% are more likely to persist to a second year of college.


Graphic pop-up featuring Latino College Completion