• ARCH Scholar Profiles

    Hear from students in the ARCH program!

  • "When I moved to Cesar Chavez my sophomore year of high school, I knew that I wanted to go to college. However, by the time I graduated I felt like I had set my goals much higher — I wanted to thrive in college. At Cesar Chavez, I received vital guidance that made the drastic change from high school to college so much more manageable. Learning proper study techniques as well as setting up habits to manage my time effectively was invaluable. These skills are especially essential to me now as a Senior studying Slavic Languages and Literatures at Harvard preparing to write my thesis." — Alyssa T.

  • Christian “Hi! My name is Cristian, and I am a first-generation college graduate. I graduated in May of 2019 from St. Mary’s University in San Antonio, Texas with a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering and a minor in Applied Mathematics. I dared to dream of accomplishing this incredible achievement that my parents were not afforded. The reality is that I grew up in a lower-class Hispanic family and I was exposed to many of the financial hardships my parents faced. Breaking out of the economic cycle of poverty was one of my main motivations to get a higher education coupled with my passion for math and science. Throughout my journey, I was fortunate to have mentors who guided and challenged me academically and personally. The first great mentor I had that started me on this path was my AP teacher and Academic Decathlon coach Mr. William Kibler. Before meeting him, I had a multitude of questions regarding the college admissions process. How do I apply? What are good universities for engineering? Can I go out of state? And most importantly, how do I afford it? Mr. Kibler and ARCH motivated me to expand my own boundaries and consistently seek to improve myself. I strongly recommend ARCH to anyone that has the drive and mindset to continuously strive for improvement.” — Cristian, ARCH Cohort 2011, St. Mary’s University

  • Chris "I am a 2020 graduate of Coe College, a private liberal arts college in Cedar Rapids, IA. I was able to study in Washington DC and an intern at the Human Rights Campaign as well as travel to parts of the country that I never thought I would be able to see. I’ve had so many life-changing experiences in college that I would have never had if I did not take the ARCH path I did in high school. The knowledge I gained from the ARCH program helped me gain skills that I will use throughout my entire college career. Those skills were time management, the ability to pay attention to detail, and most importantly, how to study and retain information. I believe if it were not for ARCH and its leadership, I would not be where I am today." — Chris Crull, ARCH Cohort 2016, Coe College

  • “I am currently a senior at Simpson College in Indianola, Iowa, and will graduate in May 2021. I study Sociology and Applied Philosophy with a minor in Women & Gender Studies. I'd say that my goals from freshman year to senior of high school did not shift as I wanted to go to school for pre-med (that of course changed while in college) but the plan that I had for getting into college had certainly changed between my first and last year of high school. At first, I believed that just getting good grades and test scores were enough to get into school but I learned throughout my high school years that colleges (specifically prestigious and/or small liberal arts schools) want their students to have personalities and hobbies.

    My clubs and activities were a big part of my college applications and helped set me apart from other candidates. I would suggest the program to others as it helped me to make lifelong friends as well as become academically prepared for my college coursework. My brother is a senior in high school and I would have recommended he go through the same process I did so that he would be better equipped for his future college as well. The biggest thing that I learned from going through the college admissions process as well as working in the office as a recruiter was that the most important thing is to be personable. The admissions counselor that recruited me to Simpson still talks about how he knew I would be a good fit for Simpson because he saw my personality not only through my personal statement but also through our conversations. Showing your personality while also being able to carry a conversation was vital to my admissions process.” — Karrecia C

  • Camila “ARCH has amazing teachers and a director that truly wants to see you thrive and that believe you are meant for something greater; and specifically, that our minds were always meant to think deeper. For me, I always had the mindset that I was going to go to college, but ARCH made those dreams into realistic realities.

    I am the youngest of my family and the only one that has gone to college. I think about my nephew and my niece and I want the idea of college to be more obtainable to them. Going to college in my family starts with me. I was more than lucky to have this program to provide me with essential opportunities.” — Camila Hernandez, ARCH Cohort 2019, Pacific Lutheran University