Many college graduates who want to pursue graduate or professional education, find that their college career has not adequately prepared them for admission or success in their chosen field of study. Such students can take advantage of the numerous post-baccalaureate programs that help students compete successfully for admission and ensure they are prepared academically.
I propose a pre-baccalaureate program that would be offered to high school graduates that want to attend college but are not adequately prepared. Students would focus on academic preparation, study skills, dealing productively with success and failure, and professionalism. Many prospective “Pre-Bacc” students will need financial assistance to attend, so a work study would be a program component and could be modeled after that of the Christo Rey Network of schools. Very modest student fees would take advantage of current behavioral economics research and solidify student buy-in in their own academic success.
Finally, it is critical that this program be considered as a stop-gap measure that exists only until changes in the K-12 educational system such that all high school students graduate ready for college. To that end, students, faculty, and interested others would participate in targeted educational policy initiative to improve public education for everyone. The student could be extremely effective advocates for education. Like many other programs, this one should exist to ultimately put itself out of business.