STEPS: College Program for Vermont Foster Youth
The College of St. Joseph STEPS program has had great success in its students showing academic progress and graduating.
STEPS, Students Taking an Effective Path to Success, is a full-time residential program for Vermont youth transitioning out of foster care. It provides a supportive campus environment for students so they can earn a college degree, develop work skills, and experience optional counseling and guidance support.
CSJ solves logistical problems foster youth traditionally face by offering year-round housing and meal service. STEPS students also have access to career and personal counseling.
The persistence rate for STEPS students, or rate of students making academic progress, is five times the national average for foster youth. The first graduating class in 2012 had a success rate of approximately 10 times the national average for foster youth.
Those interested in attending College of St. Joseph through the STEPS program are encouraged to speak with their Youth Development Coordinator about arranging a visit to the College of St. Joseph.
- Year-round food and housing.
- Extensive financial aid packages. Including the option to apply for the Provider Scholarship.
- Individualized support plans, including optional counseling, academic support, meaningful community service opportunities, and coordination of varied social and recreational events.
- Student engagement and leadership development in optional mentoring program, student led advisory board, and Life Skills Group.
- The STEPS Program has a graduation rate that is 5 times the national average for youth who have transitioned from foster care to college.
- Students in the STEPS Program report that they would recommend STEPS to others transitioning from foster care.
- Many STEPS students demonstrate consistent academic improvement, campus involvement and athletic success throughout their academic career at the College of St. Joseph.