Community Scholars Program

District of Columbia
Academic Level
Issue Area
Key Personnel
Program Focus
Summer Bridge


Program Description

The Community Scholars Program seeks to provide support to first-generation college students, who typically represent diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds. Participants are identified and considered for the program based on their high school academic and extracurricular achievements. They attended high schools that did not have the same access to college preparatory courses (such as AP or IB courses) as private or parochial schools. Nevertheless, these students took advantage of all of the best their high schools had to offer, and are often class presidents, mentors, and valedictorians with stellar grades. The program was developed in the late 1960s as a mechanism for enrolling more local Black District of Columbia residents. The program has evolved over the years to include other students of color and to serve primarily first-generation college students from across the country.


Class of 2014 (n=60):
· 4-year graduation rate: 75 %
· Anticipated 6-year graduation rate: 92 %
· Average GPA: 3.035
· Study Abroad: 22 %

First Year to Sophomore Year Retention (n=60): 95 %

Sophomore Year to Junior Year Retention (n=57): 92 %

Junior Year to Senior Year Retention (n=52): 96 %