The successful Step to College Program (STC) was one of the first projects of the Institute's former Educational Equity Initiative, which later evolved independently as the Institute for Sustainable Economic Educational and Environmental Design.
From the beginning, STC’s mission has been to increase the number of low-income, first-generation and historically underrepresented students who apply to, attend and graduate from our nation’s colleges and universities. Through college-level courses offered at local high schools, a longitudinal student tracking platform, personalized student mentorships, and case management, STC provides students in Oakland Unified School District and San Francisco Unified School District with the academic, social and emotional support they need to succeed in higher education. STC’s vision is that one day, all students will have the opportunity to earn a college degree that provides them with meaningful economic and personal prospects.
STC students are high school juniors and seniors who take courses that train them in critical thinking, academic literacy, and technology, as well as other college preparatory courses for which they receive up to twelve (12) units of transferable credit from SFSU. The courses are taught by a university faculty member in an effort to familiarize historically under-represented urban students with the format and structure of university courses. Students who participate in the program also receive academic counseling, college/career guidance including support filling out university applications, financial aid forms and scholarship applications.