Mercer County Community College’s NJ GEAR UP Program and Summer Academy program returns after a five-year hiatus. The Academy is a pre-college program that serves students in the Trenton school district exposing them to a college or university environment while receiving tutorials, mentoring, and academic and culturally enriching services.

Dr. Isaiah White, Director of Gear Up, explained that it meant the program is intended to help Trenton Students prepare for college, the classroom, and the workplace.

“We are going to be teaching them professional development, teach them how to send emails, how to communicate and how to network… we’re gonna focus on their careers early,” White said.

The goal is to help Trenton students learn leadership through career experiences, academic competition and prepare them for their future careers. The program wants to present a full range of classes for Trenton students.

“How to act on the job, how to deal with anger on the job, and then when it comes to online learning, how to communicate with your teacher online, how to learn online,” White said.

Dr. James H Whitney III, Assistant Vice President of Academic Affairs, explained that MCCC hopes to help Trenton Students strive for a better future. The program is entirely free for Trenton residents and will include field trips, food, and in-person learning.

“Because we want to make sure that more students are prepared for college…Trenton is our capital city. Trenton is a diverse population of students and students that have a range and economic and socio-economic factors, and we want to make sure that they are served, and the Community College has a responsibility to open the doors to find initiatives,” Whitney said

To participate in NJ GEAR UP Program and Summer Academy, you must live in the city of Trenton, complete a program application, meet family income requirements, enter the program in grades 7 through 12, provide a copy of your latest report card, and attend one of the following target schools: Trenton Central HS, 9th grade Academy, Hedgepeth Williams MS, Grace A. Dunn Middle School, Joyce Kilmer Elementary School, Luis Rivera Elementary.

For more information, contact Dr. Isaiah White at or call 609-586-4800 x3234.

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