George Mason University
George Mason University Mason
George Mason University

College Application Coaches

EIP students sitting in front of a laptop

High school students participate in the Early Identification Program (EIP) at Fairfax campus. Photo by Alexis Glenn/Creative Services/George Mason University

Learn While Giving Back

Think back to when you were applying to college.

Do you remember the process of planning required to select and apply to colleges? Do you remember the time it took to compose different essays for the different schools you wanted to apply to? This is a stressful time for many of us, especially those of us who do not have family members to help us with the proces

The Honors College is working with the Early Identification Program (EIP), a college preparatory program for first generation, college bound middle and high school students to help provide support as students prepare to apply to college.

Students who participate in HNRS 261 002 (CRN 19866) Community Connection Practicum: College Application Coaches will help students find resources to help them with their college applications, help with college application essays, and will send reminder emails to make sure all the EIP students apply to Mason's Honors College.

We are looking for 20-25 dedicated student volunteers to serve as College Application Coaches.  This will involve attending an organizational meeting with a faculty member this Fall, helping with an EIP event (where you will meet your students) on the Fairfax Campus of Mason on Saturday January 19th, attending twice-weekly classe sessions during the Spring semester (Tuesday and Thursday 12noon-1:15p) to be trained, making visits to EIP student Academic Mentoring Program sites during the spring semester, and providing students online support. 

Requirements filled

As an HNRS 261 class, this opportunity may be used to fill several different requirements, depending on your catalog year.

For students using the 2019-2020 and later catalogs, it fills the Civic Engagement (HNRS 260 or 261) requirement.

For students using the 2018-2019 and prior catalogs:

  • HNRS 230. HNRS 261 will substitute for HNRS 230 in the Honors College curriculum.
  • Requirement 3. This means that you may use HNRS 261 as one of your two required classes for Requirement 3.
  • Humanities/Social Science Electives. Some majors, such as those in Engineering, have a minimum number of Humanities/Social Science credits. This class will count towards these elective credits. 

As always, major-specific requirements are ultimately determined by the departments. We ask that you meet with your Honors College advisor and have them work with your major department, if you plan on applying to this opportunity. 


Step 1 Step 2 Step 3
On January 18 – a couple of days before the Spring semester – we will meet our students face-to-face on the Mason Fairfax campus.

In the classroom, you will then begin developing your ability to provide support to these students once the semester begins

Meet your students on campus, then start training
You will visit each student during the semester at a local public school where they attend weekly tutoring sessions as part of EIP’s Academic Mentoring Program (AMP).

You will also help them plan for the college application process via email, Google Docs, and other online tools.

Provide Coaching to a caseload of about 10 students
We will deepen our commitment to college access through discussion, activities, and projects related to the service experience.

At semester’s end, you will present a deliverable, such as an empirical assessment of the program or another applied research or design project that will directly contribute to the program.

Develop your understanding of college access issues

What is EIP? 

How to register

You will register on PatriotWeb for the course. Soon thereafter, you will be contacted by the organizing faculty members – Richard Todd Stafford, Jasmyne Rogers, and Eva Bramesco – to schedule a meeting. Attending a meeting with a faculty member during Fall 2019 and attending the January 18th event are requirements of the course.


We expect this commitment to be equivalent to a regular 3-credit class.

Date Description Details
Fall 2019 Meet with faculty You will meet with Richard Todd Stafford, Jasmyne Rogers, or Eva Bramesco
18 January On Campus meeting with students Coaches who live on-campus will be allowed to move in early, if needed. We will hold a brief training in the morning of 18 January, then meet with our students on the Fairfax campus during the day
Throughout Spring Semester Training, Conversation, and Reflection Over the course of the semester, you will receive training in the classroom to help support you as you help your students. You'll also explore issues related to college access and first generation students with other volunteers in the class.
Early- to Mid- February Meet your students at AMP Sites College Application Coaches will attend the Early Identification Program Academic Mentoring Sites. These events will be coordinated so that all volunteers assigned to a site attend on the same day. Either EIP or the Honors College will provide a shuttle to the site and we will work to develop a shared lesson plan for the event in class. This will enable you to have more relationship-building face-to-face time with the students you met in January.
mid-Feb through early-May Individually work with students As a group, we will have weekly tasks that involve emailing students about important aspects of the college application process, offering to answer questions, and/or helping the students complete application-relevant activities using Google Drive.
End of semester Deliverable Students in the class will create a deliverable, such as an assessment of some portion of the program, some relevant applied research, or a relevant design project that will contribute to the ongoing, iterative improvement of the program.