Since Richard Harris first conceived of the idea in 2002 the Summer Bridge Scholars Program has grown from a group of 11 incoming College of Engineering first years to a multi-day University-wide event for over 250 students that requires 50 Northeastern staff and faculty to orchestrate. The program provides an opportunity for engagement and pre-enrollment support to first-year students living in the United States from historically underrepresented populations at the university.

As an incoming D'Amore-McKim student, Jonathan Bush chose Northeastern for the co-op program. He also noted Northeastern's social media presence as a deciding factor. “They really take inclusivity and diversity as really important, and I can see that through the things that they post, through the events that they have,” he says. “I spoke to multiple students that I'd found online, and they truly do love it here.”

Martin Dias, a Supply Chain & Information Management Associate Teaching Professor, sits on the leadership team for the program. “Summer Bridge Scholars Program is one of those milestone life events that I believe will put students on a different life trajectory, that it is a kind of inflection point for them,” Dias says. “For some, it's just sort of a slight acceleration and for others, it is completely transformative.”

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