Spring ISD Sophomores Have Until Jan. 3 to Submit EMERGE Fellowship Applications
Through a partnership launched in the district in the spring of 2018, the EMERGE Fellowship program aims to prepare high-potential students from underserved communities to attend – and graduate from – selective colleges and universities. Admission to the EMERGE program is also selective, and successful candidates are typically strong academically (as indicated by GPA, PSAT scores and transcript history) as well as being from economically disadvantaged backgrounds. Many of those selected for the program will be the first in their families to go to college.
According to EMERGE Director of Districts Sandra Núñez, who helps manage the program in Spring ISD and Spring Branch ISD, the best EMERGE candidates are persistently curious and open to learning new things – both about themselves and about the opportunities available to them. While grit and perseverance are important, Núñez said, so are gratitude and humility, together with the drive needed to stick with the program and participate fully.
“We’ve identified a couple of character traits that we’re looking for,” Núñez said, “because we have seen over the years that those are the things that really help students be successful in the selective college application process.”
Following the application and interview process, students who are ultimately selected will participate in EMERGE throughout their junior and senior years. The group aims to identify roughly 40 current Spring ISD sophomores to induct next spring. Starting at the end of the sophomore year, the program provides targeted college counseling and application support, financial aid workshops, free SAT prep classes, summer college trips and other learning opportunities to help students make the best college match possible. The program also offers a growing network of support – made up of current and former EMERGE Fellows from throughout the Houston area – to help students achieve their educational goals.
“We’re looking for students who are really interested in exploring their options,” Núñez said. “A lot of the schools that we advise students toward are schools that maybe they haven’t even heard of, like small liberal arts colleges in other parts of the country. And that doesn’t mean that all of our students are going to go to one of those schools or that that’s the only type of school we advise toward, but we do want students who are open to doing that research and learning about those schools – to expand what they think is possible for college.”
Applications for the new cohort will be accepted until 11:59 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 3, 2020. Interested sophomores can access the online application at www.tinyurl.com/EMERGEapp2022.