This June, we kicked off week two of Bridge to High School for our newest DTS students. The week before, we welcomed them to the program and to their new high school in DTS style, with staff, interns, and returning high school students all participating in our programming. Students took a detailed tour of the campus led by 10th, 11th and 12th graders, began to observe their own habits in terms of time management and stress responses, received their fitness trackers and began a competitive virtual walk to their interns’ college campuses, and learned about the addictive quality of sugar and how it damages our bodies.
We focused on academic remediation in math and writing, executive functioning skill facilitation (time management and study skills, written communication skills, goal setting, and public speaking skills), deeper immersion in the DTS college-going culture, and intensive workshops in financial literacy, narrative writing, and body awareness. Bridge to High School is an important first step for our ninth graders in helping to increase their feelings of preparedness for high school academics, competence to begin high school math, confidence in their high school social lives, motivation to excel in high school and to attend and graduate from college. The ultimate goal was to instill in them the belief that they now have the support to overcome any obstacle they may face in high school.