When I came to Swarthmore, I felt like I didn't fit. I struggled here, mainly because my Philadelphia high school hadn't prepared me for the challenge. What saved me was the mentoring I got from faculty and staff. All of them helped me not just to survive but to thrive at Swarthmore.
When I returned to work in the Student Affairs Division, I determined to make sure to provide this same kind of mentoring and support. A lot of students come into my office and describe what a different experience Swarthmore is for them. I share with them my experience and assure them they will survive. I encourage them to use faculty office hours and to speak up in discussion-based classes—two things first-gen students struggle with. I tell them that this is their chance to take advantage of the great resources Swarthmore has to offer—summer research funding, internships, career services, and programs such as the Richard Rubin Scholar Mentoring Program. This helps first-gen students navigate not only Swarthmore, but life after.
Kyra Harvey-Broughton '19, Program Coordinator
As a Swarthmore student from a low-income background, I had first-hand experience with some of the challenges that under-resourced and underrepresented students face as they transition to Swarthmore's rigorous academic environment. In S3P, I share my own experience pursuing a STEM major at Swarthmore whilst battling imposter syndrome. As an antidote to overwhelm, I work to familiarize Scholars with the plethora of resources available to them as Swarthmore students, and I encourage them to regularly and persistently seek help. My hope is that scholars finish our program with a sense of belonging in community and a strong network of support that will last throughout and beyond their time in college.
Summer Support Staff
Staff members who are hired specifically for this four-week summer program include:
Additional professional staff: Summer Scholars Program students are supported by professional staff in lab science and mathematics.
Student mentors: Student mentors will be selected from Swarthmore's rising sophomores and juniors and will support you in your courses. These students will live with you in the residence hall, be available during evening and weekend hours, and can help you feel more comfortable with campus life.
Summer Scholars Program Committee
The Summer Scholars Program committee includes the program director and dean, four summer faculty members, and additional committee members from across campus. The program has widespread institutional support throughout our community.
S3P Additional Staff Support Image Callout
"The student mentors are the 'secret sauce' for the S3P's recipe. They are terrific as individuals and are an amazing team."
- Amy Cheng Vollmer, former director