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Wheeling Jesuit University to Offer Cristo Rey Summer Academy

A new summer academy set for July at Wheeling Jesuit University will help high-achieving, low-income high school students from Cristo Rey high schools make an easier transition to college.

WJU announced it will hold Cristo Rey Summer Academy (CRSA) sessions on its campus  July 5-17 and July 19-31. The academy will help high school juniors from Cristo Rey high schools:

  • get expert help in navigating the college application process
  • learn strategies to help them successfully transition to a higher education institution
  • experience college life–classes, residence life, student-faculty interaction and more—on WJU’s vibrant campus

The CRSA will complement the excellent work that Cristo Rey high schools accomplish in preparing their students for college. Qualified students from Cristo Rey schools in Baltimore, Brooklyn, Chicago, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Columbus, Detroit, Indianapolis, Newark, New York, Philadelphia and Washington D.C. are eligible to attend.

The CRSA is:

  • free of charge to high-achieving, low-income students (similar Academies approx. $1,500 per week)
  • a 10-day total immersion experience 
  • capped at 45 students which guarantees individual and small group attention
  • staffed by a hand-picked Academy team of WJU faculty, staff and student mentors
  • going to focus on balancing academic and social life; choosing courses; faculty expectations; support services
  • offering a full gamut of sports, cultural, service and community events for students to enjoy

WJU sophomore Uneeke Ferguson, a graduate of Cristo Rey High School in Baltimore, attended a WJU academy two years ago. “It was a real eye-opener,” she recalls.  “The admissions process can be daunting and transitioning to university life is also a challenge.  The Academy was a significant help on both fronts.  And the experience sold me on attending WJU. ”

“Wheeling Jesuit is the perfect place to hold a Cristo Rey Summer Academy,” said the Rev. Denis Donoghue, S.J., WJU’s associate vice president for academic affairs and a CRSA planner. “We are a national leader in serving high-achieving, low-income students.  It’s not just about college access. We want to help each and every student succeed in finding the right college to attend.”

Al Jazeera America recently ran a nice profile piece on how Cristo Rey Jesuit High School in Baltimore, like all Cristo Rey schools, helps students overcome the odds that are so often stacked against them.



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Situated on a bluff overlooking the Potomac River, Loyola on the Potomac is located 35 miles south of Washington, D.C., in southern Maryland.