About Puente

Puente is an academic, counseling and mentoring program of support for students to build the skills necessary for success in both academic and career goals.  Students in Puente work closely with their counselor, English instructor and MENTOR to prepare for transfer to four-year colleges and universities.

Students should be prepared to participate in the following components:

  1. ENGLISH INSTRUCTION: Puente students will take two English classes, one each semester. These classes stimulate and build Puente students' confidence in reading, critical thinking, and writing skills through an exploration of multicultural literature which incorporates Mexican-American, African-American, Native American and Korean experiences.
  2. COUNSELING: Puente students take two Guidance classes and work closely with their Puente counselor until they graduate, exploring career options, developing an academic educational plan and identifying lifetime goals. Students visit University of California and California State University campuses and attend a statewide annual Puente Student Motivational and Transfer Conference.
  3. MENTORING: Each Puente student is matched with a MENTOR from the business, academic or professional community of interest. MENTORS share with students their personal, academic and career experiences, and thereby provide a window into "real-life" work environments. The network of trained Puente MENTORS provides many resources for the Puente students, their families, their colleges, and the community.

RESULTS:As a result of Puente's success, the program has increased to include 95 community colleges and high schools throughout the state making The Puente Project a successful vehicle for social change among historically marginalized communities. Puente community college students transfer to four-year colleges and universities at greater rates (47%) than their peers (27%)[1].  Puente high school students consistently graduate at greater rates (88%) than their peers (69%)[2] and enroll at four-year colleges and universities at twice the rate of matched controls.[3]