The role of higher education in precollege preparation for underrepresented students

Bernadette Brunhuber Tiernan, Fordham University


Low-income students who are the first in their family to attend college face extraordinary challenges, forcing many to drop out. This study examined research about the impact of income inequality on precollege youth, and the effects of poverty on their academic and economic success. Current higher education intervention programs, including College Access Challenge Grants (CACG) and summer bridge programs, were reviewed. The study analyzed the impact of the New Jersey CACG program Aim High Academy on college enrollment and persistence. Results indicated that college enrollment rates were higher for students who attended Aim High Academy than the average college enrollment rates for students from all high schools that participated in the Aim High Academy program. Results also indicated that college persistence rates for Aim High Academy students were higher than the average rates of college persistence for the New Jersey colleges who participated in Aim High Academy. This analysis indicated that opportunities for underrepresented youth to achieve success in college can be improved with summer interventions in junior year, before these students graduate from high school.

Subject Area

Educational leadership|School counseling|Secondary education|Higher education

Recommended Citation

Tiernan, Bernadette Brunhuber, "The role of higher education in precollege preparation for underrepresented students" (2015). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI3703286.