Colorado State University Forms Alliance with State High Schools to Make College a Reality

Colorado State University is partnering with 10 Colorado high schools to form the Alliance Program to encourage high school students to attend college. Through the new initiative, Colorado State will collaborate with the schools and their communities to align efforts at the high schools with the expectations of the university.

"This alliance is of the utmost importance to ensure that we develop a pipeline of students from these communities who will attend college and achieve degrees," said Robin Brown, vice president for Enrollment and Access. "This collaborative initiative between the university and Colorado high schools will elevate the expectation of students and their communities regarding the importance, access and attainability of higher education."

The new program is part of the university’s ongoing commitment to expand access to higher education for qualified students, while also supporting improved retention and graduation rates. This is one of the key goals of the Colorado State strategic plan initiated by President Larry Penley.

Through the Alliance Program, Colorado State provides a variety of services and resources. The services, which are tailored specifically to address the requests and needs of each member school, include advising, mentoring, tutoring, curriculum and academic assistance, special on-campus opportunities, and admission, scholarship and financial aid guidance.

Colorado State is committed to increasing attendance and retention for students admitted from Alliance high schools. A key component of this commitment is the Alliance Award. Students from Alliance schools will receive a base award of $2,000 per academic year and may receive an increased award, up to the amount of Colorado resident tuition and fees, based on the student’s documented financial need.

"We recognize that the challenge of creating eligible students for university admission is tremendous," said Mary Ontiveros, executive director of Admissions at Colorado State.  "But we believe that by eliminating obstacles, students and their parents will begin to see that attending the university is truly achievable."

A recent Colorado State Monfort Lecture, featuring Jane Goodall, served as the kick-off event for the program and included a special reception for Alliance schools. Students and leaders from all 10 Alliance high schools attended along with Colorado State representatives from Fort Collins and Pueblo. This event marked the first collaborative meeting with Alliance members and the university.  

This fall, Alliance schools will be invited to the university’s annual Diversity Conference. In addition to special programs for Alliance attendees, Alliance high school representatives will meet with university faculty and staff to determine how the university can best provide assistance to these high schools and their students.

The Alliance high schools are:

Adams City High School

Hinkley High School, Aurora

Sierra High School, Colorado Springs

Fort Lupton High School

Centauri High School, La Jara

Montezuma-Cortez High School

Pueblo Central High School

Rocky Ford High School

Trinidad High School

John Mall High School, Walsenburg