TeenSHARP was founded in 2009 to increase underrepresented students’ access to college and develop student-leaders who are Successful, High-Achieving, and Reaching Potential (SHARP). Since then, TeenSHARP evolved into an organization that gives low-income and minority youth access to premier leadership opportunities, trains them to be ambassadors of higher education in their communities, and prepares them for success at selective colleges and universities. TeenSHARP operates one site at Rutgers University’s Camden-Campus where it serves Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey students beginning in grade 6 with full-day programming each Saturday, school year-round. In the fall of 2015, TeenSHARP launched its second site at the University of Delaware serving scholars in grades 9 – 12 from all 3 counties in Delaware.
TeenSHARP’s trajectory-altering college-preparatory program equips scholars with the strategic knowledge and tools to be unapologetically excellent at the nation’s most selective colleges and universities. Scholars receive college prep advising and mentorship while participating in the following school year-round programs:
- College Access Ambassador Training (9th-12th grade students) – College Access Ambassadors participate in day-long workshops every Saturday from 9th to 12th grade, taking on high school, college, and personal development coursework. They graduate TeenSHARP with real-world leadership experience, a strong network of supporters and mentors and exceptional demonstrated academic achievement. With the support of TeenSHARP’s programming, mentors, intensive one-on-one advising, and peer-community, scholars arrive at college as astute, intellectually curious scholars deeply engaged in their community.
- College Discovery Program (6th-8th-grade students) – This program seeks to cultivate children’s love for learning and provide early exposure to college. Students in the program receive over 120 hours of intensive supplementary Math and English classes and participate in experiential learning excursions and college visits.