"Gateway to College empowers youth who have dropped out of high school or are not on track to graduate to earn a high school diploma and college credit in a supportive college environment."

Gateway to College

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Gateway to College?

Gateway to College is a scholarship program for students ages 16 to 20 who have faced challenges in high school and/or are behind or have dropped out of school. The program helps students reengage with their education at Springfield Technical Community College (STCC). Students take courses at STCC and earn dual high school and college credit. They have the opportunity to earn their high school diploma and a significant number of college credits toward a certificate or a degree.

Who is eligible for Gateway to College?
  • You must be between 16 to 20 years old.
  • You must be able to complete your high school diploma by the age of 21.
  • You must have faced significant challenges in a traditional high school setting and/or be behind in high school credits for your age and grade.
  • You must be at an 8th grade reading level (minimum) and meet other writing and math standards at entry level.
  • You must be a Springfield or Agawam resident.
How long would it take me to earn my high school diploma?

Most students are in Gateway to College for 1.5 to 3 years. The exact length of time to earn a diploma varies by a student's course load and credit needs. Students remain in Gateway to College until they earn a diploma or turn 21 years of age.

What is expected of me?
  • Students are expected to attend 100 percent of their classes.
  • Students are expected to come to class on time, be prepared with class materials, and complete all class and homework assignments.
  • Students are expected to spend three or four hours a day working on their homework (outside of class time). We strongly encourage students who have jobs to consider the time demands of the program.
  • Students are expected to attend regular meeting with their academic counselor and maintain close communication with their professors and the Gateway staff.
  • Students are expected to adhere to all STCC policies and procedures.
What is the cost of the program?

Through a partnership with Springfield and Agawam Public Schools, Gateway to College pays for college tuition and books. Students will be responsible for their school supplies.

What kind of support will help me be successful in a college setting?
  • Students who are accepted into the program are assigned an Academic Counselor. Academic Counselors provide support and access to resources to help all students in the program to be successful. Academic Counselors provide the following services:
  • Transcript reviews and academic advising.
  • Assistance with completing enrollment and registration. Courses are selected with the guidance of the Academic Counselor based upon each student's high school completion plan and educational goals.
  • Referrals to resources, such as tutoring, counseling, student activities, health services, and more.
  • Personal counseling and guidance including assistance with problem solving, time management, and stress management.
What if I have an Individual Education Plan (IEP) or 504 Plan?

Gateway to College does not discriminate against students with disabilities. We request that students with an IEP or 504 plan submit copies of the plan with their application so that we may refer them to the STCC Disability Services office. Together with their families and doctors or other practitioners, students should consider whether the services and accommodations available on a college campus will best serve their needs.

How is the Gateway to College program funded?

Gateway to College at Springfield Technical Community College is a competitive scholarship program funded through the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education which awarded STCC start-up support through the Massachusetts High School Graduation Initiative (MassGrad). Gateway to College at STCC also has a formal partnership with Springfield and Agawam Public Schools. The cost of tuition, books and most fees are covered by the scholarship.