Center for Access & Attainment > College Access > Programs > 2020 RFP

2020 College Connect - Request For Proposals (RFP)

College Connect is a FREE, five-week academic enrichment, cultural exploration and career awareness experience that provides Chicago high school students with college exposure through college-level courses, college readiness workshops, seminars, and field trips. Hosted on DePaul University’s Lincoln Park campus, College Connect provides dedicated instructors, small class sizes, and creative hands-on projects to guide students to rise to college-level expectations.

Program dates for summer 2020 - June 29 through July 31.  Classes are held Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays, from 9 a.m. - 12 p.m. That's total of 9 hours of instruction per week, 45 hours total for the 5 weeks of the program. College Connect classes meet either at the Loop campus or in Lincoln Park, depending on instructor's preference.
We are looking for experienced, committed, energetic and fun instructors to teach an engaging course in their field of expertise to high achieving high school students. 
Course content must be appropriate for a college-level DePaul class, as well as fun, hands-on, and interactive, using the city of Chicago as a classroom. 

Past College Connect courses included topics such as Bioethics, Race & Hip Hop, Art and Literature of the Marginalized, Cybersecurity in Action, Public Art Campaigns, Hospitality and Leadership, Intro to Web Development, Chicago Religions, Youth Activism, Science of Violence, and many more.

College Connect instructors receive a $5,000 stipend upon completion of the program.
We want to tailor the courses we offer in College Connect to reflect a sampling of real-life college majors that lead to rewarding careers in a variety of industries. We are looking for instructors with expertise in the following fields:
  • Information technology: computer science / coding / app and web development
  • Mathematics: business / finance / data science / statistics / actuarial science
  • Science and health: biology / pre-nursing / pre-med / bioethics
  • Hospitality: customer service / entrepreneurship / management / leadership
  • Fine and digital arts: painting / drawing / graphic design / digital cinema / animation
  • Social sciences: sociology / anthropology / political science / pre-law / psychology
  • Communication: public speaking / marketing / advertising / media studies

2020 College Connect Proposal Guidelines

  • Courses should be college freshmen-level with an emphasis on experiential learning through class discussions, relevant field trips and hands-on projects, in addition to lectures and class assignments
  • Preference will be given to proposals that connect class curriculum to the city of Chicago (e.g., visiting relevant museums, going on neighborhood walking tours, meeting Chicago authors or politicians, etc.)
  • Courses should incorporate career-exploration and provide options for college majors that the course would address and that lead to careers in a variety of industries
  • Courses should NOT include college readiness content (e.g., FAFSA completion, writing personal statements, etc.) as that material will be covered in weekly Peer Hour seminars outside of class.
All proposals MUST include:
  • Course title
  • A general summary of the course
  • Detailed learning objectives
  • Topics that will be covered and how each week’s lectures and projects will accomplish this
  • Examples of potential class assignments and projects (at least one graded assignment per week). Assignments need to include a writing component – we work with the DePaul Writing Center on developing the students’ written communication skills and each class must include some form of writing assignments
  • A tentative individual or group final project to be presented in class (details will be finalized in the spring 2020) as well as an abbreviated class presentation to be presented to parents and guests at the Final Presentation Ceremony. This classroom presentation is to be a part of students’ final grades. The abbreviated presentation for the Final Presentation Ceremony should review the purpose and accomplishments of the course and might take the form of a poster presentation, short video, art display, table demonstration, etc.
  • Proposed book and materials list, estimating for 20 students. NOTE: College Connect budget is limited, we have to adequately fund 5 courses, so each course has to fit within a set budget, the limit for 2019 was $750 (this includes field trips, notebooks, flash drives, etc). Be creative in your choices and keep cost in mind – for example, textbooks are expensive and students don't want to read them, so some readings can be scholarly research articles which we can print and copy in our office
  • Your grading policy. Since these are real college classes, they need to result in real grades
  • Each instructor will be assigned two Peer Guides, DePaul students who serve as classroom assistants and mentors to students. Peer Guides will attend class every day and should be incorporated into the classroom experience. Proposals should include plans to involve Peer Guides in the overall learning objectives of the course. Peer Guides can assist with class projects, lead ice breaker activities, assist with parts of lectures, etc. They are NOT a substitute for an instructor.
  • We work with DePaul’s University Center for Writing-based Learning (UCWbL), who will assign writing tutors to each course to support students’ learning and writing development outside of class. Students will meet as a class with their UCWbL tutors during Peer Hours. Tutors will aid student success by designing activities that reinforce classroom goals, and by addressing areas of weakness as identified by instructors. Please keep this in mind when designing your course and add a writing component for each week
  • Guest speakers are welcome in College Connect classrooms, but will not be paid. Guest speaker bios and the topic they will address will be required prior to the date of their visit
  • Please include 2-3 possible Chicago-area field trips when designing your course – once your proposed class gets selected for the 2020 program, you will be required to provide at least one meaningful experiences outside of the classroom for your class (e.g. museum field trip)
  • Please include any special technology and supply needs along with estimated costs in proposal if applicable. All classes will be held at DePaul where all classrooms have internet access, one desktop computer, LCD projector, white screen and audio capabilities. If your class will require specialized equipment, you must indicate that in the proposal
  • Have experience teaching teenagers (College Connect students are typically 15 to 18 years old).
  • Experience with designing a class curriculum, grading assignments, etc.
  • Be on time and prepared to teach each class Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday - canceling class is prohibited and any absences must be cleared in advance.
  • Have a daily agenda and make it clear to the students – structure and clear expectations are required in each class.
  • Provide a safe space for the students to learn and build upon their skills.
  • If/when any conflicts/bullying behaviors arise during the program, instructor is expected to address it in an appropriate, professional manner and also to report it to the College Connect Program Coordinator. Per Illinois Mandated Reporter guidelines, all supervisory adults must report any signs of abuse/harassment.
  • Maintain open and timely communication with their T.As/Peer Guides and College Access staff for the duration of the program.
  • Submit a finalized class syllabus by May 15, 2020.
  • Submit final books/materials list to College Connect Program Director by May 15, 2020. After that date and after the orders are placed, any class materials will be the responsibility of the instructor.
  • Attend the Faculty Orientation on a date to be determined in June 2020.
  • Meet with their Peer Guides in June 2020 regarding strategy for the course.
  • Attend the College Connect graduation event.
The proposal guidelines ask for a lot of information. You have to repare all required elements ahead of time because the form will not let you proceed if you don't have some parts figured out. When you are ready, submit your proposal through our online form.

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Please direct all questions to:
Kate Agarwal
Assistant Director, College Access
College Connect Program Director   773-325-8375