For many Bridge Scholars, it is their first experiences in navigating higher education and entering spaces like Colorado College. Read more from current studnets and Bridge alumni about how the Bridge Scholars Program shaped their college trajectory!

Current Students Testimonials

kalie.jpgComputer Science & Economics Major, 2022 Bridge Scholar

I always imagined that the transition from a high school student to a college student was something I would have to navigate on my own. The Block Plan differed so greatly from my usual high school class schedule and I worried if it would be difficult to effectively learn in class or make lasting friendships. I am grateful to the Bridge Scholars Program for supporting me throughout the transition process as well as offering me so many amazing opportunities that I wouldn’t have received if I was not a part of the program.

Through the program and the Bridge course, I received numerous support between my peers, professors, and mentors and I was able to build lasting friendships with them. I didn’t know what to expect of the culture at Colorado College and I was completely unsure if I would ever belong, but the Bridge Scholars Program allowed me to truly see myself as a part of CC through the kindness and generosity of the community I met. 

hunter.jpgMathematics Major, 2022 Bridge Scholar
After being accepted to Colorado College, I felt unsure of how I wanted to approach beginning my college journey. That is when I found out about the Bridge Scholars Program. Through this program, I was able to learn the ins-and-outs of the one-of-a-kind Block Plan and to learn basic college-appropriate skills that have thus far helped me out a ton, such as time management, finding a suitable school-life-sleep balance for me, building connections and new relationships, and most importantly, making the most out of my college experience. Without Bridge, I would not have made the lasting connections that I have made by participating in it. I took the Umwelt class with Juan Miguel and Maybellene, and they were very enthusiastic about teaching the material, which worked well with me. We also took many field trips during that class that accustomed us to the Colorado Springs community and its surrounding area.

Political Science & Religion Major, 2022 Bridge Scholar

Upon arriving on campus, a day late due to my canceled flight, I experienced a mix of emotions: fear, nervousness, excitement, and exhaustion. Being a first-generation Muslim student, I felt an instant connection with my Bridge classmates, bonding over our shared excitement for the program. Looking back, I recognize that without Bridge, finding "people like me" on campus would have been challenging. The Bridge community has been a source of positivity for me, and many other students, as it comprises individuals who take pride in their backgrounds as people of color. Although I initially struggled with imposter syndrome, having others to share my struggles with made all the difference. The friendships I formed during Bridge remain my closest, and the program's mentors have been invaluable in helping us carve out a space on campus.


Neuroscience Major & Africana Studies Minor, 2021 Bridge Scholar

I decided to attend the Bridge Scholars Program as a first-year because I wanted to prepare myself for the upcoming school year and felt that it would help make my transition from a diverse high school to a PWI smoother. Bridge definitely helped me navigate my first year. When other students arrived on campus for NSO, I was already familiar with the campus and had already made friends. This took away a lot of the anxiety I would've felt, had I arrived on campus with everyone else.  
One of my main motivations for becoming the Bridge RA was to help make BIPOC students feel more comfortable at Colorado College. Imposter syndrome is real.  I believe that if minoritized students are able to see other students that look like them occupying more spaces and positions on campus, it would help reiterate to them, that they belong at CC as much as everyone else does. I believe that my presence itself as a Black woman is a support to my residents, but I also do my best to let them know they can come to me for advice or help on issues that they may not feel comfortable disclosing to other people on campus. 

Lu.Kathy.jpgBiochemistry Major, 2021 Bridge Scholar

High school graduation: the one day we had all been looking forward to for years. It was a symbol of our achievements, evidence of our adulthood. But as we made our way across the stage and had our final dinners together, we were thrown into disarray, confused as to what was next.   

We were told that college was the best choice, that it was the only choice. We had our doubts, but what else were we to do? We were given three months. Three insufficient months to prepare for what felt like a reboot of our lives; forced to leave our friends, our family, and our comfort for something we were so unsure about.   
Soon enough, we were here, on campus, unpacking all our belongings. And just two days later, I felt almost as if I was home again. I can’t describe how validating and relieving it felt to be surrounded by a community of BIPOC, underrepresented, and first-generation students in a PWI. Bridge truly embraced those aspects of my identity that I avoided, making me face them head-on. And honestly, I couldn't be more grateful.     


Political Science and Sociology Major, 2020 Bridge Scholar

As a first-generation college student from an immigrant family, it was a difficult journey trying to entangle the whole college process and the presence of a global pandemic did not simplify the process. The block plan was foreign to me, and I hoped that my Bridge class would make my transition easier. Exactly as I had hoped, it did.
Even with the changes that were made to the program to accommodate the new normal of the pandemic, I reaped a lot of benefits from the program. My bridge class was incredibly eye-opening and introduced me to new concepts that I had never thought of before. Most importantly, it allowed me to create friendships that otherwise would not have been possible during this time. My roommate and the friends I have right now were introduced to me through Bridge. It also introduced me to mentors and resources that I would not have found on my own.

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Alumni Testimonials

Israel Ashiagbor

The thought of transitioning from New York to Colorado to further my education was very challenging for several reasons. First, I had no family in or close to Colorado to support me. Secondly, I had to leave behind the great community I was a part of in New York. And lastly, I had to face the fact that I will be a stranger in another land. With all these thoughts in my mind, I honestly did not have a great feeling about my decision to move. However, the Bridge Scholars Program uplifted me in so many ways and created a family for me here at Colorado College. To my surprise, this family always provided social, emotional, and intellectual support to me in my first year. Most importantly, the program continues to provide amazing opportunities and support even after my first college academic year.



Anthropology Major - Spanish Minor

As a student from Colorado Springs, graduate of Harrison High School, I never imagined what opportunities I would have at CC. This experience is unforgettable. I feel so empowered to follow my dreams to learn about the world and to continue my education in Anthropology. Miraculously, here I am today, months from being the first person in my entire family to graduate college. I have traveled to over 5 countries, 8 states, and multiple cities in Colorado that I never knew; have completed over 4 research projects; and have had the opportunity to explore my own interests and challenge myself at this prestigious institution.


Independently Design Major in Visual Media and Social Change - Journalism Minor

I was so nervous when I got to CC with a bunch of strangers and an even stranger thing called the Block Plan. I was terrified my first few days in my Bridge class-and to make matters worse, my professor assigned us an entire book to read in one night. Crazy, right?
Instead of sulking around, a few classmates and I decided to go outside and read at the jelly bean table, a spot that has an amazing view of Pikes Peak. With some fresh air, my new friends, and some skimming, we were able to finish the book and learn some new things about - hmmm, well - to be honest, I don't remember what I read anymore! But I gained more important things:
My classmates became my close friends, looking at Pikes Peak became my happy place, and I felt confident enough to tackle the Block Plan, and all the crazy opportunities for the next four years.
Now, because of the people I met and experiences I had at CC (especially during Bridge), I found my passion for film and social change and am pursuing it at The ONE Campaign in Washington DC, where I am editing videos to help eradicate extreme poverty in sub-Saharan Africa.

JBegay - Professional Photo 2

Biochemistry Major

As an incoming first generation, native student, I was afraid that I might not be smart enough or did not deserve to be at Colorado College. However, the Bridge Scholars Program debunked my fears. In large part to my Bridge Professor's facilitation, I realized that we each had a unique perspective to bring to the classroom; so much that I felt comfortable to participate in class discussions, ask questions, and learn to ask for help. Beyond the classroom, I befriended other Bridge Scholars and created a close-knit community with my cohort, providing me with the confidence to academically succeed at CC, and also try a few other new things, like Dance Workshop!
Joel Begay is currently a graduate student pursuing a Masters of Public Health (MPH) in Hospital & Molecular Epidemiology at the University of Michigan School of Public Health. He continues to support first generation and students of color at UM and is an active member of the Native American Student Association.

Feminist and Gender Studies Major - Psychology Major - Art History Minor

The Bridge Scholars Program was an invaluable resource for me at Colorado College. It gave me an edge academically before my FYE even started. I formed lasting friendships, which still operate as my support system years after graduation. The knowledge, networking, and experiences I encountered as part of the Bridge Scholars Program helped shape the person I am today.
Andrea "Andi" Ruybal is currently a doctoral student of social psychology and health behavior research at Claremont Graduate University. She continues to support mentoring programs both at the undergrad and graduate levels for minority students. In her free time she enjoys travel, baking, running, and cats.


Psychology Major - Psychology Major

As a first-generation college student I was very intimidated about coming to CC. The Bridge Program provided me a strong foundation of support that helped me succeed at CC and has shaped my goals beyond CC.
I am now an Assistant Professor of Psychology at Rutgers University-Camden, an institution that serves a large percentage of minority and first-generation college students. The Bridge Program inspired the desire to support and empower success among first-generation and students of color and I grateful to be able to do that through my research, mentoring, and teaching.

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BSP Summer Feedback Survey

The BSP Summer Feedback Survey was introduced in 2022 to ask first-year scholars how effective the program was in their transition to the Block Plan and the Colorado College student environment. Check out the report below to see how students felt about their experience!

Report an issue - Last updated: 10/10/2023