Indiana is partnering with Ivy Tech Community College to offer a summer program "bridging the gap" between high school and college.
The Bridging The Gap initiative will provide students who complete core components of the program with college credit – and some cash.
The initiative is paid for by federal funding, making it free for students who qualify. It's designed to serve 2021 high school graduates who don't meet state college or career readiness benchmarks in English or math. The Indiana Department of Education is identifying eligible students based on testing data from 2019.
Rebecca Rahschulte, vice president of K-14 initiatives and statewide partnerships at Ivy Tech, said thousands of students will likely qualify.
"Our goal is to attempt to enroll about 3,500 into the program for this summer," Rahschulte said.
The program offers three core components: a college introductory course, a customized skills program focused on English and math, and incentives for students to enroll at a college or university.
Raschulte said the introductory course is already embedded in Ivy Tech degrees as a starting point for students, acting as a sort of orientation and resource guide as they enter the realm of higher education.
"It provides students with an overview of the skills and strategies that they need to successfully complete a postsecondary degree or certificate," she said.
Students will receive $100 for completing each component of the program, and can earn up to $300.
Rahschulte said Ivy Tech will directly notify students who qualify through mailed and emailed materials. Enrolled students can start the program in early June or July.