Summer program lets students sample college life at prestigious universities

A public charter school’s Summer Of A Lifetime program sent 121 low-income, predominantly Black and
Latino high school students from Asbury Park, Neptune and other parts of New Jersey to elite colleges and universities,
including Princeton, Harvard, and Oxford University in England, for free this summer.
Ruby Lopez, 15, is going into her sophomore year of high school at College Achieve Asbury Park and has attended the
school for six years.

“I have been brought so many new opportunities that other schools wouldn’t give me,” Lopez said, adding that she went to
Colby College in Maine and Princeton University during the summer program.

“Colby was really eye-opening. I never had been away from my parents more than like a day or two, so me being there for
two weeks with no one that I knew, except one person, was really something that I never thought I would be able to do,”
Lopez said.

Lopez, who plans to study education and psychology, said she also never expected to spend time at a prestigious university
like Princeton.

The program was developed by College Achieve Public Schools to give students a feel of what it’s like to be on these
campuses, interact with and learn from tenured professors, as well as other college students, and offer access and a sense of
belonging.

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