Start your own Dream Project
The Dream Project Model works to support one part of a large effort to improve access to higher education. If you are interested in replicating that model at a college or university, the resources below will provide you with some tips on getting started.
The Dream Project Model has been replicated at several universities. Each university has taken the Dream Projects mission and core values then made them their own as they saw fit for their community. We highly encourage you to do the same!
Contact us to ask any questions about getting started.
Frequently asked questions
Do we have to follow the current model?
No. Our partner universities have taken key points from our model such as:
- Mission focused on creating equal access to higher education, especially for low-income and first-generation students;
- Near-peer mentoring of high school students by college students;/li>
- A college class that teaches college students how to be mentors and examines critical issues of social mobility; and
- A program that is student-led and/or student-run.
While the program is focused on working with high school students there is an awesome two-way fold to our mission, which is that we work extensively on trying to support undergraduates as well.
Do we have to call ourselves “Dream Project?”
No. Other universities who have implemented our model have done it both ways — as an example, Colorado State University created a Dream Project that is very similar; they created their own logo (made up of CSU student silhouettes) and updated the participant workbook for Colorado, etc. Rutgers University, on the other hand, added the Dream Project mentoring model into their existing Future Scholars program, so it’s not called Dream Project and it doesn’t maintain some elements of the model. Both CSU and Rutgers, though, are “Dream Project universities” in that they both have used the model.
What needs to go into the undergraduate class curriculum?
There are no “required” topics. A few things we encourage incorporating include:
- Mentorship strategies.
- Working with undocumented students.
- How to navigate through the college application process.
- When and how to apply for scholarships.
- Writing a personal statement
- What are colleges looking for, etc.
- How to fill out the FAFSA
We love seeing what our partners incorporate into their curriculum; it is a great way for us to learn from one another.
Can you provide me any resources outside of this website as I get started?
We have a few other resources that we could offer as you get started.
- PDF copy of our Student Workbook
- This is something we provided every High School student and require every undergraduate to purchase. It includes everything that our program works on over the course of a year from initial introductions to the students as juniors to how to keep in contact with them as they prepare to graduate.
- Sample emails sent to our listserv.
- During the school year we send out 2 emails per week to our undergraduates with information that we feel will benefit them for class and their high school visit that week.
- Miscellaneous documents such as:
- Class syllabus
- Sample visit syllabi
Can some members from my campus visit the UW to get to know the program better?
Yes! We enjoy having other universities visit our campus. We can tailor your visit to what it is that you need and want, please just get in touch!
Who to contact in your area?
- Do you have College of Education? Diversity program?
- Is Service Learning available on campus?
- High Education advocates?
- Other organizations that do similar work.
- High School
- Counselors/Advisory Leads
- Know which classes and teachers would be a good fit.
- Have pull to fit the program into schedules.
- Counselors/Advisory Leads
As of 2013, two universities across the country have adopted elements of our model as they work with high school students in their area. Links to their websites can be found below, and they would welcome your inquiries as to their own model.