June 19, 2002
Calvin's Entrada Nears
On Sunday, June 23 some 40 high school juniors and seniors from across the country will move into the Calvin residence halls to begin Entrada, a month-long summer immersion program for ethnic minority students.
Students will come from Michigan, of course, but also as far away as California and Florida. They represent a wide variety of heritages, including African American, Hispanic, Asian, Native American and multi-racial. But all, says Entrada director Rhae-Ann Booker, are in for a typical Entrada experience.
The heart of the Entrada Scholars Program is a regular three-week Calvin College summer school course that Entrada students take with the Calvin students. A true college immersion program, Entrada sees the high school students not only take a regular class, but also live in the residence hall, worship and grow spiritually together, eat in the dining hall, study in the library, shoot hoops in the gym, order late-night pizzas, do a service project, get a heavy dose of computer skills -- in other words, have a typical college experience.
That, says Booker, is the whole idea.
"We want students to get a true sense of what college -- particularly Calvin -- is all about," she says. "At the end of Entrada, students have taken an actual Calvin class for credit and they've lived on campus for a month. The Entrada experience gives them a good look at what college life entails and what it takes to succeed in college. It also gives them a taste of what Calvin's unique brand of Christian education is all about."
Life in the classroom includes six local certified teachers as Academic Coaches and one trained teacher as Rhetoric Coach. Life in the residence hall also includes a special Entrada residence hall director as well as six Calvin students as Resident Assistants.
Since its inception in 1991, about 315 students have completed Entrada. Some have gone on to Calvin; some attended other colleges. Almost all have pursued some sort of post high school education.