College Readiness Academy

Fall Semester classes

College Readiness Academy LogoThe College Readiness Academy (CRA) is a partnership that provides college preparation to New Americans and others who would like to begin college-level classes but are not yet college-ready. The Institute site is particularly for adults who are employed or interested in a career in healthcare. Many of our students are nursing assistants — or were nurses in their countries of origin — and now want to go to college to advance their medical careers in the U.S. The other CRA two sites — Hubbs Center and Neighborhood House — and have a different career focus.

These free programs practice the same reading and writing skills as expensive prep classes run by colleges. At the end of the program, most students show great improvement on the Accuplacer, the community college placement test. They need fewer reading and writing classes (in “Developmental English”), saving $100’s or $1000’s — and some are eligible to begin General Education classes. With the help of two full-time college navigators, students also develop a good understanding of how the college system works, how to plan their classes, how to apply for financial aid, and how to be academically successful.

Medical Careers Guide:
Interested in a Medical Career, but not sure where to start? Check out our Healthcare Careers Guide.

Class Schedule:

  • Fall Semester 2016 College Readiness: September 6 – December 16, 2016; 4 days a week: Tuesday – Wednesday – Thursday – Friday 10:00 am – 1:00 pm.
  • Spring Semester 2017 College Readiness: January – May 2017. Exact dates to be set. 4 days a week: Tuesday – Wednesday – Thursday – Friday 10:00 am – 1:00 pm.
  • Summer Grammar Class 2017
  • Summer Study Skills 2017

Skills students attain in College Readiness Academy:

  • College-level reading skills, including critical analysis and vocabulary-building
  • College-level writing skills, including note taking and essay-writing
  • Study skills, including skimming, scanning, test-taking, vocabulary-building, process-writing, and note-taking
  • Computer skills, including word processing and research tools
  • Build knowledge of medical vocabulary and the medical field (guest speakers from many medical professions)
  • Grammar refresher
  • Introduction to Human Body Systems – on Fridays

Students who are eligible:

  • Demonstrate good English language skills on TABE reading test and a short written essay


  • Fall & Spring Semesters – Course fee is $20 (supply fee)
  • Summer class – Course fee is $5 (supply fee)

Assessment and Registration:

To enroll in the course, applicants must participate in a “Information & Test Day.” At these sessions, the instructor will explain how this class compares to classes at local colleges, and the applicant will take a reading, language, and/or writing assessment. Together, the instructor and applicant will decide if this class meets the applicant’s academic needs. Contact our Registration Hotline at 651-647-0191 x 321 or to register one of the following testing days from 9:30 am – 12:30 pm:

  • Tuesday, November 22
  • Monday, December 5
  • Monday, December 12
  • Tuesday, December 20
  • Wednesday, December 28
  • Thursday, January 5
  • Monday, January 9

College Readiness Success
The Improve Group prepared a report on the outcomes from the first 18 months of the program. Read their report: College Readiness Academy Program Evaluation Findings and Considerations.

Take Advantage of One-to-One Financial Coaching
The Institute’s financial coaches work with students in our Medical Careers Pathway Program to assist with debt, credit, savings, budgeting, and spending wisely. They provide clients with financial knowledge about expenses such as buying a house, a getting business loan, and saving for college. Meet Hodo and Jake.