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Merced County High School Students invited to apply for Scholarship-based Summer program in Yosemite & Sequoia

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April 2018—Merced, CA – High school students from Merced County will have the opportunity to participate in a transformative outdoor and academic program in Yosemite and Sequoia National Parks this summer.  The Adventure Risk Challenge (ARC) summer courses introduce students to the natural beauty of the Sierra Nevada, while challenging them academically, emotionally and physically. ARC selects 12 students for each of its courses: a 40-day course in Yosemite and a 25-day course in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks.


During the summer courses, students explore the Parks’ iconic granite rock formations, cascading waterfalls and alpine lakes, while backpacking, rock climbing, rafting and more. Participants study language arts and environmental science, write poetry and personal essays, and learn to navigate in the backcountry using a topographical map. They return home having learned about stewardship, conservation and the importance of teamwork.


 “I learned to be an independent, problem-solving leader. I’ve become more independent by learning how to cook my own food, by doing chores that no one asked me to do, and by taking initiative in my education,” says Joel Duarte, a 2017 summer graduate from Dos Palos.  He adds, “I’ve become a leader by setting my goals high and not being afraid to push myself.”


 On the 2017 Sequoia course, students supported one another on 1,000-foot climbs while carrying heavy backpacks. They shared with one another their struggles at home and in school. They workshopped their poetry together, discussing their deepest hopes, fears and dreams. Giselle San Ramo, a Dos Palos High School student on the course, said the experience was “exhilarating.”  She wrote at the end of the course, “Coming to ARC has helped me realize many things about learning to trust people, while also being independent. I’ve learned that it’s okay to share some of the weight off of my shoulders.”


Teenagers like Duarte and San Ramo build their self-confidence and become better-equipped to achieve academic and personal goals on ARC courses. ARC’s intensive curriculum helps prepare students for the independence and academic rigor of college. Participants showed a 15 percent improvement on SAT English questions on a pre- and post-assessment last year.


 ARC’s Associate Director Will Fassett says the summer courses connect Merced youth to the outdoors. “Many young people in Merced don’t realize that Yosemite and Sequoia are world renown," he said. "This is an opportunity for local youth to have a multi-week adventure in these extraordinarily places.”


ARC’s courses are offered to students on a sliding scale based on family income, but many students pay less than $50 for their participation. First-generation students, English-language learners, and all students who are motivated to experience a challenging outdoor and academic adventure are encouraged to apply. The summer 2018 program is accepting applications now until April 13.


Visit to learn more about the program and download applications for the 2018 Summer Courses.


MJC Hosts New Student Days To Enroll High School Seniors And

Other First Time Students

(Modesto, CA) – Modesto Junior College will host its annual “New Student Day” events to enroll high school seniors and other first time students on Saturday, April 14 and Thursday, June 14, 2018 on East Campus, 435 College Avenue, Modesto. Students meet at 8 a.m. in the Auditorium of the Performing and Media Arts Center.  Attendance and campus parking are free.


New Student Day assists students who are just beginning the process of enrolling at MJC through the steps of application, orientation, assessment and advising workshops.  Hands-on assistance with the financial aid application or follow-up steps is available, a parent information seminar is offered as well. Students can register for New Student Day online by visiting and clicking on the bottom graphic.


MJC counselors and student success specialists have been active at high schools throughout Stanislaus County assisting seniors with required steps to enroll at the college. This proactive effort at the high schools prepares students to receive on-site assistance with registration on New Student Day.


Those students not previously served at area high schools are encouraged to begin the enrollment process by submitting an online application prior to attending a New Student Day. To complete an application visit and click the orange “Apply Now” tab.


In an effort to improve student access, New Student Day is designed to assist any student, new or returning, regardless of where they are in the process of enrolling at MJC. Students are guided towards the specific activities they need in order to complete any remaining enrollment steps on New Student Day. Students who have already completed the CORE steps at their high school locations should attend the April 14 event for assistance with summer course registration, and the June 14 event for assistance with fall 2018 course registration.


For more information on New Student Day or enrolling at MJC call (209) 575-6789.

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