Dodge Foundation Supports Urban Pre-College Program
Madison, NJ (March 31, 2008) — The Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, one of the nation’s most respected philanthropies, recently made a $60,000 grant to Fairleigh Dickinson University’s Urban Pre-College Program (UPP).
This campus residential program for inner city high school students is administered by FDU’s Educational Opportunity Fund and led by Marjorie Hall and Brad Levy. The UPP is a collaborative effort between FDU and the College Preparatory Incentive Program, Inc. of Jersey City and Plainfield, which is providing a portion of the program costs.
In its letter to the University, the Dodge Foundation wrote, “Your work is helping to create a generation who will possess the critical and creative thinking skills needed to live in a sustainable world. By providing a leg-up for young people, you are having a much larger and deeper impact on society that we can possibly imagine.”
Urban Pre-College Program (UPP) is a three-year program with a strong liberal arts focus that exposes high school students to a college environment. UPP has a successful track record, having run from 1999-2002.
This summer, 50 CPIP students entering 10th grade will attend the four-week residential summer program on FDU’s College at Florham Campus in Madison, NJ.
The major components of the program are a leadership retreat that encourages team building, instills mutual respect and develops esprit-de-corps among students and staff.
The program then moves into an academic development component to improve basic skills (writing, reading, critical thinking), improve time-management and study habits, and student’s ability to assess their own strengths and weaknesses. Whenever possible, they are taught by full-time FDU faculty.
The final component is self-development to improve knowledge of self, leadership skills, develop problem-solving skills and assist in defining and refining goals.
In addition, there are physical activities that facilitate team building including scavenger hunts, basketball games, racquetball competitions, board game tournaments, rally races and volleyball.
Evening activities include self-development workshops and off-campus trips to a Broadway play, a performance at the New Jersey Shakespeare Festival, Medieval Times, roller skating and bowling.
All students who successfully complete the three-year program and meet EOF State-established eligibility requirements will be guaranteed a slot in the EOF program on either of FDU New Jersey campuses.
FDU Program director Marjorie Hall said, “We want to see students grow into strong, confident and involved high school graduates who go on to become successful college students. I am thrilled that, through the generousity of the Dodge Foundation, the Urban Pre-College will give College Preparatory Incentive Program students the opportunity to participate in this wonderful pre-college experience.”
The Dodge Foundation’s President and CEO David Grant said, “We believe all children can accomplish greatness if provided with great opportunities. The outstanding organizations being funded represent our best assessment of how to improve the lives of those children who need us the most. At their best, the efforts of these groups are truly transformative for the young people they serve.”