POMONA – Twenty-one Pomona Unified School District students spent three weeks getting a glimpse of college life during the University of La Verne’s annual REACH Summer Business Camp, where they experienced a stimulating and enriching academic environment as they explored the world of business.

As a way to help students “Reach” their potential, the camp, which is celebrating its 10th anniversary, provides high school juniors from underserved communities with an introduction to the business field. Nearly 100 percent of students who attend the program go on to pursue a college degree.

“Working with the REACH program is just one of the ways Pomona Unified encourages students to pursue higher education,” Board President Andrew Wong said. “They learn that attending a university or college is attainable and feasible for them, and by getting an idea of what the academic standards are like, they are able to better prepare themselves for college.”

The University of La Verne’s College of Business and Public Management hosted the annual camp
June 8-28 for more than 60 college-hopeful students who took classes in accounting and finance, business ethics, economics, management and organization, marketing and website development.

Students also received valuable insight from local business owners who explained the key role leadership plays in entrepreneurship. They were also challenged to come up with their own ideas for a business and complete a thorough business plan.

“It was an amazing opportunity and unforgettable time for all of the students who gained confidence knowing that they can attend college,” said Monique Cardenas, a business teacher at Garey and Village Academy high schools, who assisted La Verne professors with lesson plans and helped students with their research projects.

“Students gained a unique understanding of the role of business in the economy and the importance of obtaining a post-secondary education,” Cardenas said. “It was exciting to see the sparkle in their eyes.”

The camp is held at no cost to students, who live in campus dorms, eat in dining halls and sit in on classroom lectures during the duration of the program. Those who complete the camp earn five elective credits through the Pomona Unified Regional Occupation Program and one unit from the University of La Verne.

“Our students have taken a significant step toward their college degrees and now have a better understanding of the business field thanks to the REACH Summer Business Camp,” Superintendent Richard Martinez said. “I want to thank the University of La Verne and our other community partners for encouraging our students to explore their career aspirations and giving them the hands-on opportunity to do so.”


REACH: More than 60 college-hopeful high school students, including 21 from the Pomona Unified School District, participated in the 10th annual REACH Business Summer Camp, hosted June 8-28 by the University of La Verne. Nearly 100 percent of students who attend the program go on to pursue a college degree. (Photo credit: La Verne Media Relations)