‘Soar High’ with College Reach Out Program


Published: Wednesday, March 6, 2013 at 2:47 p.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, March 6, 2013 at 2:47 p.m.

The College Reach Out Program, or CROP, at Santa Fe College is a free program that provides students in grades 6-12 with the tools needed to prepare for and succeed in college, but many potentially eligible students are not taking advantage of what is being offered.

Facts

COLLEGE REACH OUT PROGRAM

What: The “Soar High” Spring Break Camp sponsored by the College Reach Out Program at Santa Fe College.
When: 8 a.m.-5 p.m. March 25-28; deadline is March 21.
Where: Santa Fe College, northwest campus, 3000 NW 83rd St.
Cost: Free.
Miscellaneous: The program also is accepting applications for grades 6-12; deadline is March 21.
Information: Call 352-395-5268.

It seems that CROP is being confused with the Credit Retrieval Online Program, also called CROP, because it shares the same acronym.

The Credit Retrieval program provides high school students with an opportunity to makeup graduation credits, but College Reach Out is a state-funded program that offers after-school tutoring, academic counseling, mentoring and a summer enrichment program to help students graduate from high school and succeed in college.

And now CROP, the College Reach Out Program, is accepting applications for grades 6-12 for its "Soar High" Spring Break Camp and also for its year-round program, but hurry because the deadline to apply for both is March 21. To apply, visit www.sfcollege.edu/crop and click on application.

Dr. Tarcha Rentz, director of Santa Fe CROP, said the "Soar High" camp will be held from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. March 25-28 at the Santa Fe northwest campus at 3000 NW 83rd St. It will feature a math and science focus and a partnership with the engineering club at Santa Fe.

Rentz said campers will have an opportunity to perform hands-on projects, including building rockets and launching them. She said students will participate in a decision-making segment that will include a question-and-answer portion with a panel of Santa Fe students. Rentz said Jimmy Yawn, director of the career center at Santa Fe, will discuss career choices and also help students narrow down career choices.

"We want the students to have a direction and a purpose and we want to expose them to possibilities," said Rentz, adding that some high school students don't seem to have a clue as to what they want to do in the future or how school connects to their future.

Rentz said CROP offers after-school tutoring provided by University of Florida and Santa Fe students from 4-6:30 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays at the Santa Fe Blount Center at 401 NW 6th St. and from 3:30-6 p.m. Monday-Thursday at the northwest campus. She said the Santa Fe CROP is unique because it also includes middle school students.

CROP also offers homework help and test preparation classes for the FCAT and also the SAT and the ACT, which are college entrance exams. Students also receive academic counseling, mentoring and assistance with college applications. Parents receive informational workshops to help them assist their children.

Rentz encourages students to take the ACT while in middle school and not wait until they get to high school. "They need to get familiar with college standards," Rentz said. "It's important to understand the format and to see the coursework they will need."

Participation in CROP requires that students are potential first-generation college students, have a grade point average below 2.5, score low on the FCAT or be enrolled in the free or reduced lunch program or receive other government assistance.

To qualify, Rentz said students should meet one academic requirement and one financial requirement.

Rentz recommends students apply for CROP even if they think they may not meet the requirements because there are other programs they may be eligible for at Santa Fe.

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