The College of New Jersey, Rider University, and Mercer County Community College have joined forces to launch the Capital 3 Collaborative, a new program to provide resources and opportunities for students who benefit from the Educational Opportunity Fund at each institution.
The Capital 3 Collaborative, which references the proximity of the three colleges to the state capital in Trenton, is a joint networking, community building, and transfer pipeline that will foster connections between students at each institution to increase student engagement, promote student leadership, and public familiarity with the EOF program on a larger scale.
“The Capital 3 Collaborative will offer purposeful programming focused on student wellness, financial literacy, leadership development and civic engagement,” said Tieka Harris, director of TCNJ’s EOF program, who conceptualized the initiative. “We hope to offer our students opportunities to connect and network with their peers outside of their own institution as a way to further engender a sense of belonging within the EOF community and beyond.”
In addition to resources, the program will sponsor a series of events including a “Wellness Weekend” to promote holistic wellness while addressing mental health issues and concerns, along with “Care for the Capital,” a community service event to be held in Trenton which will align with the overall goal of fostering leadership and will serve as a civic engagement learning experience.
“My colleagues and I are excited about the many doors this new collaboration can open for our students,” said Reggie Walker, director of Rider’s Educational Opportunity Program. “We hope this new opportunity will help students grow both personally and professionally, while immersing them further in their local community.”
Another mission of the program is to enhance the transfer student pipeline from MCCC to TCNJ and Rider.
“This is another example of our collaborations that increase pathways to higher education for Mercer residents and the region,” said MCCC’s Assistant Vice President of Academic Affairs, James H. Whitney III. “This collaboration serves as a model of how community colleges and four-year colleges can and should be active partners to serve our community.”
For more information, please contact the EOF program at TCNJ, Rider, or MCCC.
— Luke Sacks