Program Benefits

  • Residence in McCarthy Hall as part of the living-learning community experience (commuter students are exempt).
  • Courses that introduce students to strategies, resources, and guest speakers that support them on the path to master’s and doctoral studies. 
  • Advising to help students articulate an educational action plan, strengthen their scholarly and extracurricular profiles, and enhance their candidacy for advanced degree programs.
  • A network of peers and alumni mentors who are equally committed to one another’s success.
  • Travel funding to attend undergraduate research and graduate school conferences. 
  • Social activities and professional events that build cohesiveness among ACE members and connect them to graduate students, alumni, faculty, and staff.
  • The opportunity to work for ACE and strengthen one’s leadership skills as a program assistant or peer leader.
  • Assistance in completing components of the graduate application and locating graduate funding.
  • The opportunity to mentor and support high school students from underrepresented backgrounds who are pursuing admission to college.
  • The opportunity to publish one’s research or literary writings in the program’s academic journal.

Program Eligibility

ACE invites applications from ambitious and committed first-year students and transfer students who will maximize the program’s resources and support services and actively contribute to the success, learning experience, and cohesiveness of the community.

The program seeks students who are interested in the educational and career advancement of underrepresented students and demonstrate strong need for formal assistance and mentorship to graduate or professional school.

Eligible applicants are also students who will be fully invested and engaged throughout their time as ACE scholars, if admitted.

Additionally, a student must:

  • Intend to pursue a graduate or professional degree (master’s or doctorate).
  • Possess a cumulative grade point average of 3.0.
  • Agree to reside in McCarthy Hall during their sophomore year (commuters and rising juniors are exempt).
  • Complete the online ACE Admission Application in its entirety.
  • Be in good academic and judicial standing with the University.
  • Agree to meet the membership expectations described below.

Program Requirements and Expectations

Students who are accepted to ACE must:

  • Strive for excellence in their academic and co-curricular endeavors.
  • Attend the orientation and community-building trip that are scheduled on the Thursday and Friday of the week before the fall semester begins.
  • Attend advising appointments with a readiness to apply the goals and strategies established by you and the ACE director.
  • Attend, fully engage in, and contribute to weekly ACE classes and workshops.
  • Attend, plan, and participate in monthly social/residential engagements.
  • Attend the annual ACE Recognition Banquet in the spring semester.
  • Communicate consistently with their alum mentor on a monthly basis, if applicable.
  • Participate in an experiential learning activity (e.g., internship, undergraduate research, etc.) or ACE-sponsored experience that will enhance their academic and extracurricular profile for graduate or professional school.
  • Communicate with their Upward Bound mentee on a monthly basis (sophomore year).
  • Actively contribute to the success, learning experience, and cohesiveness of the community.

How to Apply

Eligible students may apply online through the ACE Application.