What is College Forward?
College Forward is a non-profit college access program that supports economically-disadvantaged Central Texas students from the beginning of the 11th grade until they earn a four-year college degree.
How do students qualify for College Forward?
Students who want to earn four-year college degrees and who attend selected high schools in the Austin area are invited to apply if they are in the top 60% of their high school class and either qualify for the National School Lunch Program or would be the first in their families to graduate from college. Students who do not meet these exact qualifications may seek nomination by a high school counselor or teacher. The College Forward application includes a questionnaire, a personal interview, a short essay, two recommendations, and signed parent consent forms. Completed applications, if submitted by the deadline, are reviewed by College Forward staff members, who decide which applicants are most likely to benefit from the program.
Accepted students must agree to attend twice-weekly after-school classes (four hours per week), participate in occasional evening or weekend workshops, and perform 20 hours of community service each year of high school.
Parents or guardians of admitted students must agree to attend one Saturday workshop during their student's junior year of high school.
How much does it cost to be in the program?
College Forward is a FREE service.
Which schools does College Forward serve?
Our program currently assists students at the following high schools in the Austin metropolitan service area:
• Academy@Hays High School
• Del Valle High School
• Jack C. Hays High School
• Lehman High School
• Georgetown High School
• Travis High School
• Crockett High School
• Stony Point High School
What if I attend a school that College Forward does not yet serve?
We will consider working with individual students on a limited basis if they meet our admission criteria and are highly motivated to attend four-year colleges. Please contact our office for more information.
Is College Forward affiliated with any other organizations?
College Forward is a partnership of the following institutions:
. Admission Control [we launch futures!]
. St. Edward's University
. Southwestern University
. Texas State University
. The University of Texas at Austin
College Forward is a proud recipient of AmeriCorps and AmeriCorps*VISTA support through the Corporation for National and Community Service and the OneStar Foundation.
What is required of the students who participate in the program?
Students enroll at the beginning of their 11th grade year and commit to participate at least through high school graduation. They must agree to attend twice-weekly after-school classes (four hours per week), participate in occasional evening or weekend workshops, and perform 20 hours of community service each year of high school.
Parents of admitted students must agree to attend one Saturday workshop during their student's junior year in high school.
This sounds like a lot of work! Why should a student apply for this program?
The college application process grows more complicated every year, while college tuition goes up and college success statistics go down.
||“If I hadn’t joined this program, I wouldn’t be accepted right now, wouldn’t be this much ahead, [and] would be rushing too much.”
—Hays High School student
||Our goal is to give students the highest possible chance of long-term success by mentoring them carefully through the whole process, from initial decisions about college choices through the attainment of a baccalaureate degree. Each of our students receives about 420 hours of college preparatory coaching during the last two years of high school, and another 80 hours over four or five years of college.
How will this affect a student's other responsibilities and commitments?
Most students can find a way to fit College Forward classes into their schedules. Some students, if they already participate in numerous activities, may have to make a choice.
How can I get more information about the organization?
Please visit our Contact Us page to request more information.
How can I help?
Visit the Get Involved page to learn more about supporting our work.