Summer On Campus: Try-on College

Each year SOC students maintain an impressive college GPA; the 2019 average was a 3.765, according to the university’s plus/minus scale.

Summer—a time for high school students to relax, have fun, and spend time with friends. Summer on Campus, part of The University of Alabama’s Early College program, gives high school students the opportunity to do all that while simultaneously earning college credit from a top-ranked university.

Students from across the United States and from military bases overseas converge on Tuscaloosa, Alabama during the summer to take part in this unique program. They experience the “typical” college freshman experience by learning to live with roommates, to navigate a college campus, and to balance study time with social functions.

Ease the Transition

“Transitioning from high school to college was a breeze for me because of Summer On Campus,” said Kaleah Gipson, current University of Alabama freshman and former two-time SOC participant. “It definitely prepared me for all of the adjustments to college life. It amazes people all of the time how far ahead I am compared to other freshmen students. I have made so many lifelong friends, which has made my social life here at Alabama so much easier!”

Earn the Credit

Students participating in Summer on Campus choose to attend Summer I (late May through late June) or Summer II (late June through early August) and must take two classes, equaling 6 to 8 credit hours. Some students decide to stay for both terms, taking four classes and earning 12 to 16 hours of college credit.

Ace the Classes

UA Early College has designed a structured, proactive support system for Summer on Campus students, including required study hall, weekly meetings with the Student Success Coordinator, nightly curfew, and assigned Peer Coaches (current UA student workers) and other summer staff. This structure contributes to the academic success of the students. Each year SOC students maintain an impressive college GPA; the 2019 average was 3.765, according to the university’s plus/minus scale.

Make the Connections While academic performance is a top priority for students in the program, developing social skills, becoming immersed in a diverse atmosphere and engaging with community and campus partners are all vital to a student’s growth and development. UA Early College staff provides students with opportunities for community service, for meetings with campus organizations, and for small group activities. Students also enjoy weekly dinners with speakers from across campus, game and movie nights, scavenger hunts, and summer holiday festivities.

“Summer On Campus has been such a blessing to me and my family,” Kaleah continued, “and I highly encourage all high school students to participate in this once in a lifetime experience!”

Interested students can apply to Summer on Campus after being accepted into the UA Early College program and after passing UAEC 200, an introductory college readiness course. For more information, visit the UA Early College website and view the Summer On Campus information page.

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