North Central College - Naperville, IL

Junior/Senior Scholars prepare for college in summer camp

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This summer, North Central College is home to 180 students, elementary through high school grades, from the East Aurora and Chicago communities and 17 college interns who serve as their teachers and mentors. They are part of the Junior/Senior Scholars, a college readiness academic summer program run by North Central College from June 14 to July 23.

This year's theme is "Fortune 2010: Making Sense of Money Matters" and scholars will be learning about money, stocks, bonds and credit; banks and the federal reserve; businesses and checking accounts; saving money and financial aid for college; and how ATM machines and other tools for banks and businesses work.

To kick off the summer program, some 225 parents and children were on campus June 19 to recognize 18 graduating high school seniors who have been part of the Junior/Senior Scholars program and are now off to college this fall. In addition to the daily classes in math, science, reading and writing, the scholars are involved in a Math Olympics, Science Fair, Forensics for Kids Competition, Battle of the Books, and trips to the Federal Reserve and Fifth Third and PNC Banks--both sponsors of the Junior/Senior Scholars program.

The year-round Junior/Senior Scholars college readiness program was started in 1988 by Dr. Jan Fitzsimmons--North Central College's coordinator of Junior/Senior Scholars and director of the Associated Colleges of Illinois Center for Success in High-Need Schools. Most of the scholars attend or attended the James Weldon Johnson Elementary School in Chicago's North Lawndale community or the Oak Park Elementary School in east Aurora.