WHITTIER – Four hundred twenty-five incoming freshmen attended Rio Hondo College’s 2017 Summer Bridge program, participating in an array of activities designed to orient students to the rigors of higher education and to give them a chance to improve basic skills and class placement.

The program, offered three times over the summer, helped build an understanding of Rio Hondo College’s services, connected students with each other and allowed them to explore their goals.

It supported both the new Rio Promise program that offers support and first-year tuition waivers to 2017 graduates of high schools in the College’s service area as well as Avance, a program for supporting Latino students.

“Rio Hondo College is becoming known for its student support systems, of which our Summer Bridge is a significant element,” Superintendent/President Teresa Dreyfuss said. “This program gives our new students a deeper understanding of the expectations of college as well as the tools to meet those expectations.”

Among the activities, students worked with math faculty for two hours a day and with English faculty for an hour a day in special workshops.

That instruction enabled 77 students to advance from one to three math levels, achieving placement in classes more advanced than they would have through an initial assessment or even the College’s nuanced multiple measures placement for basic skills class.

Other workshops briefed students on services for low-income and under-served student groups, the College’s innovative First Year Success Center, financial aid, the Rio Hondo College Transfer Center, health and psychological services, and the college’s Career Center.

Students also learned about the journey ahead of them through panels of students and deans, and attended a fair featuring more than 24 academic and career programs.

“It’s wonderful to hear of the strong impact our Summer Bridge program has had on new students,” Board of Trustees President Norma Edith Garcia said. “We want our students to know that throughout their higher education journeys, Rio Hondo College has their back.”


RHC_BRIDGE_1: Some 425 students attended workshops during Rio Hondo College’s Summer Bridge program, learning about College programs and studying math and English. During the program’s three sessions, 77 students advanced their math course placements by one to three levels.