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EOP Summer Academy Gives First-Year Students Head Start on Fall Semester

chemistry eop class

Students in Dr. Dexter Criss’ Educational Opportunity Program Summer Academy chemistry class found out what it will be like for them as first-year students come fall.

Criss required the students, fresh out of high school and planning majors in STEM programs like chemistry and nursing, to do presentations on topics like galaxies and climate change in a forum held in Yokum Lecture Hall Wednesday afternoon.

The class is part of the annual summer program held to give EOP students a leg up on their first year where they participate in an intensive pre-college preparatory curricula. All first-year EOP students are required to attend the four-week program in order to fully enroll in and take classes in the fall.

“I try to get my students to understand that they’re not in high school anymore,” Criss, professor of chemistry and biochemistry. “They were surprised that I treated them like college students when they first got here, and I told them that’s because you are college students now. This is college, and this program takes your academics seriously.”

Summer institute students live in residence halls and experience campus life to give them a taste for that as well. The philosophy is simple: Give the students a pre-college experience and they can start their college career from a point of strength.

For more than 40 years the goal of the institute has been to see its students succeed. To achieve that in part, EOP hires student tutor-counselors to provide tutoring and personal and social support. Classes include two college-level math and English courses. Although non-credit bearing, students can complete their math, English and foreign language placement exams to ensure proper placement for their fall classes.

Students are assigned an EOP counselor who follows them throughout the academic year, assisting students with a wide variety of issues and concerns.

EOP Summer Academy runs through Aug. 6. For more information on the Educational Opportunity Program, visit https://www.plattsburgh.edu/plattslife/student-support/educational-opportunity-program/, call 518-564-2263 or email [email protected].

— By Associate Director of Communications Gerianne Downs

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