Summer Springboard Success Stories

Summer 2017: Summer Springboard @ UC Berkeley

August 29, 2017

Summer 2017: Highlights from Summer Springboard at UC Berkeley

Students arrived on campus at Berkeley eager to begin an exciting two-week pre-college experience. We started the program off with an orientation and some teambuilding and ice-breaker games to get to know one another. We were delighted to see the students connecting so quickly and excited to discover what the students will learn in the next days!

During the mornings we broke out into small groups based on the student’s Academic Tracks. During this time the students got a chance dive deep into the subject area of choice with engaging professors and professional experts.

Medicine & Public Health and Psychology track students engaged with volunteer staff from the Suitcase Clinic, a humanitarian organization offering free health and social services to the underserved in Berkeley. Communications students met with UC Berkeley social media directors and learned how the university communicates online with the public. We also had the director of admissions from Haas, UC Berkeley’s leading business school, share about her experiences and about pursuing an MBA and a career in business.

Law & Government students engaged with officials from the city and federal levels, including an Assistant US Attorney, a Deputy District Attorney for San Francisco, and Katy Tang, Board of Supervisors Member for San Francisco’s fourth district. Our Technology students heard from a Mulesoft director about career strategy and how the company uses its technology to help global businesses connect to data and devices.

Afternoons consisted of either a “The True You” session or a guest speaker together as a group. These are a series of insightful seminars that allow teens to look inward and discover their unique definition of success and give them the tools to achieve it and big ideas that are practical, impactful, and easy to apply to everyday life.

Speakers included Elizabeth Weingarten, associate director of the Global Gender Parity Initiative at New America Foundation, a public policy think tank. Nick Corman, an entrepreneur and former Google executive also met with students and discussed insight from his time as a student at Harvard and career in Silicon Valley. The students were engaged with their peers and prompted questions for the experts that led to some insightful and intriguing conversations!

On the weekend we explored the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz Island, volunteered at the Oakland Zoo and even took a San Francisco city tour on a restored cable car!

Every night we planned fun activities for our students. Some of the highlights included trivia night, arts & crafts, karaoke and an ice cream social! Happy, healthy and making friends from around the world at Berkeley. These fun times with students and staff made for an unforgettable summer!

The program wrapped up with student presentations. Each group presented what they learned about their potential majors and academic areas of interest.

Medicine & Public Health students developed an in-depth presentation on the topic of vaccinations. Technology students developed and presented their own mobile applications. Law and Government students had a mock trial with the students serving as the jury. Communications students presented news articles they had written and held a press conference with live Q&A. The Psychology students presented in depth analysis of some of the most famous historical experiments. And our Business and Entrepreneurship students presented their own business models, complete with financials and market research for potential investors.  

Pictures, hugs, smiles, and some tears happened as goodbyes were being said. We were thrilled to see the strong friendships that were made among the students and excited to see what the future holds and to be able to continue in sharing their future successes!

Summer 2017: Summer Springboard @ Yale

Summer 2017: Summer Springboard at Yale

This year we welcomed two cohorts of students at Yale who were eager to begin their exciting two-week pre-college experience on the historic campus. Each session started with orientation and some teambuilding and ice-breakers to get to know one another. We were delighted to see the students connecting so quickly and excited to discover what the students will learn in the next days!

During the mornings we broke out into small groups based on the student’s Academic Tracks. During this time the students got a chance dive deep into the subject area of choice with engaging professors and professional experts. The Medicine & Public Health and Business track students met with local dentist Jeralyn Frantarella and held lively discussions on the application and cross-section of medicine, entrepreneurship, technology and business. Communications students visited the Mark Twain House and Museum in Hartford and immersed themselves in the life and history of one of the country’s most beloved and controversial authors. Law & Government and Psychology students had the opportunity to observe a sentencing trial in a criminal case and afterwards met with the judges from the Superior Court of New Haven. Their honors shared insights into their careers and led a discussion on the role of mental health in the criminal justice system.  Our Technology students heard from directors of UCONN’s tech incubator about career strategy and how the university matches its resources with investors to help launch start-ups in various sectors.

Afternoons consisted of either a “The True You” session or a guest speaker together as a group. These are a series of insightful seminars that allow teens to look inward and discover their unique definition of success and give them the tools to achieve it and big ideas that are practical, impactful, and easy to apply to everyday life.

All students enjoyed a session with Craig Matters, former Managing Editor of Money Magazine and founder of CNN Money. Craig took time to share career advice based on his own personal and professional  journey. The students were engaged with their peers and prompted questions for experts that led to some insightful and intriguing conversations!

On the weekend, each group volunteered at the Connecticut Food Bank and prepped thousands of pounds of boxes for citizens in need while learning about the issue of hunger. We also explored Boston by land and by sea, taking in a tour by “duck boat” and walking the historic “Freedom Trail.”

Every night we planned fun activities for our students. Some of the highlights included trivia night, arts & crafts, karaoke and an ice cream social! Happy, healthy and making friends from around the world at Yale. These fun times with students and staff made for an unforgettable summer!

The program ended with student presentations. Each group presented what they learned about their potential majors and academic areas of interest. We had many great projects including potential businesses, mobile apps, medical hypothesis and more! Pictures, hugs, smiles, and some tears happened as goodbyes were being said. We were thrilled to see the strong friendships that were made among the students and excited to see what the future holds and to be able to continue in sharing their future successes!

Summer Springboard’s Summer Reading List

May 16, 2017

Summer Springboard is all about personal development. One of the best ways to develop and become a better person is through reading. Not only do you develop a better vocabulary, find new models for your own writing, but books can help you expand your worldview and understanding of others.

This summer when you are lounging around the pool, dive into one of these picks:

Read More Summer Springboard’s Summer Reading List

Fixed vs. Growth Mindset

May 3, 2017

If you read our last post, you know that grit is what you need to be successful. To truly be the greatest you can be and reach your highest potential you need to pair your grit with a growth mindset. If you can do that, you will find success in this World.

So let’s find out what kind of mindset you have. Think about these scenarios:

Read More Fixed vs. Growth Mindset

Grit: The Best Measure of Success

April 17, 2017

What is the greatest predictor of success? Well, it depends on who you ask. Some professionals will tell you that it is standardized test scores and GPAs. Others believe social and emotional intelligence lead the way to success. But the latest research is leaning towards something else, grit.

Angela Duckworth, a researcher, scientist, and teacher defines grit as perseverance and passion towards a long term goal. Her findings indicate that grit, even more so than IQ, plays a vital role in a student’s ability to succeed at challenging, long-term, goals. The research suggests that students who are considered “smarter” often have less grit than their fellow students who compensate for the gap by working harder and showing more persistence. As a result, the “grittiest”, not the most intelligent, students find the most success later in life.  If you have the chance, check out her TED talks.

So can you learn to be “gritty”?  Duckworth believes you can! Here are some ways you can develop your “grit” and become more successful:

Read More Grit: The Best Measure of Success

4 Tricks to Boost Motivation

March 29, 2017

Motivation is a tricky beast. Sometimes you have it and you feel overcome with drive and excitement. Other times you just can’t figure out how to get started and you are trapped in a spiral of procrastination. Scientists define motivation as general willingness to do something. It is the set of psychological forces that compel you to take action. So how do you get those forces to work in your favor.

Here are some tricks to unleash your motivation:

Read More 4 Tricks to Boost Motivation

Finding a Scholarship that Fits You!

March 22, 2017

Spring is here! While you are enjoying Spring Break and defrosting from a chilly winter, it’s important to start looking into scholarships that are available to you. College is an expensive endeavour and spring is a great time to be researching and completing scholarship applications.

Here are a few tips on how to the find the scholarships that fit you best:

Read More Finding a Scholarship that Fits You!

A Quick Look into University and College Rankings

March 8, 2017

Did you know there are over 7,000 post secondary schools in the US? That’s a lot of schools to sift through as you are deciding where to go after high school. After reading last week’s post you should have a better idea of what size school fits you best . (If you haven’t read it yet, you should!) You may have discovered that you want a big, public university. Or perhaps you are on the other end of the spectrum and a small college sounds like the best plan for you.

Read More A Quick Look into University and College Rankings

Make the Most of Your College Tours This Spring

February 22, 2017

Its that time of year. Spring is right around corner, which means it is the perfect time to start planning your college visits and campus tours. Talk with your family about your options and compile a list of schools you are interested in attending. Ideally you will want to see the campus in action, so try to plan your visits when classes are in session.

To make the most of your visit we recommend you make a list of questions before you go. Keep it on your phone so you can have it with you on the tour.  Try to hit each of the following categories. You can use the samples provided or use them as a template to create your own list of questions.

Read More Make the Most of Your College Tours This Spring