2022 MSU Hilleman Scholar Peer Mentors with program staff.The Summer Success Academy

As part of their first-year experience, MSU Hilleman Scholars are required to attend the Summer Success Academy, an intensive month-long learning experience designed to hone student's math, writing, leadership and critical thinking skills while introducing them to college-level coursework. Scholars work with top-level faculty, mentors, and tutors to start their college experience off strong, and to integrate them into MSU's community of engaged learners. In addition to math and writing classes, Scholars also participate in daily reflections, learning strategies education, career planning, leadership development, and discussions with engaged alumni and community members.

Lessons in Leadership:  In addition to math and writing classes, Scholars also participate in leadership development and discussions with engaged alumni and community members. Each Wednesday, our primary focus is to learn from successful leaders while they share their stories and advice with our students. Often, our speakers mentor our students throughout their college careers and into their professional careers.  

Mentors: Hilleman Scholars are supported by various types of peer mentors that aid them in the transition from high school to university life. These mentors live in the dorm with the scholars and help with day to day activities. All mentors are Hilleman Scholars who have been in the incoming students shoes, so they can offer unique advice based on shared and lived experience.

Math: While attending the Hilleman Summer Success Academy, scholars get a head start on their college math requirements with personalized instruction and one-on-one tutoring. Scholars are placed into the appropriate summer math course based on multiple measures including choice of major, standardized test scores, high school GPA, and a personalized math assessment. It is our mission to show students that their mindset only hinders their ability to improve and succeed in mathematics, as most of our students tell us they are “bad” at math. Going into the fall semester scholars are placed into the math class that will optimize success as they move forward with math requirements. 

Education, The World of Work, and You (US 210): Hilleman Scholars in the Summer Success Academy will experience our introductory University Studies course, “Education, the World of Work, and You” US 210 as a major component of the program. This class is dedicated to “designing your life” by understanding the importance of education, shifts in the global economy/demography, technology, trade, etc., and how that affects YOU and your future career. Students will gain important self-knowledge and skills related to communication, problem-solving, leadership, ePortfolio’s, teamwork, professionalism, and global/intercultural fluency.  Students will also develop their career management plan while exploring their personal values. Ultimately, students will be able to visualize how they will utilize their degree with purpose.  This course requires extensive writing, self-reflection, and synthesizing of concepts.  This course does not cover the US Core requirement. 

Flowzone and the Writing Center:  As a part of their summer success experience, Hilleman scholars are required to attend FlowZone, our study space for students, and begin building a relationship with the MSU Writing Center and SmartyCats tutors that can last throughout their undergraduate career at Montana State. Both the writing center and SmartyCats tutoring are staffed by undergraduate peers from a variety of majors across the University, the study environment complements and supports the instruction and learning happening within the classroom. Whether they meet with a tutor in a face-to-face or online setting, students are more comfortable working with their peers and have the confidence to make mistakes and explore different strategies. The Writing Center and SmartyCats tutoring will be available to the Hilleman Scholars for the entirety of their time at MSU. During SSA, scholars will meet twice weekly with a Writing Center tutor, as well as four times a week with a math tutor to assist in the workload that comes with SSA. Attending FlowZone is a requirement during the academic year,hour requirements vary depending on students' class schedules.Formore information about the Writing Center, or to schedule a session with a writing tutor, go to http://www.montana.edu/writingcenter/. 

Summer Success is an intesive academy and days are very booked. 

Week One: We call this Leadership Week. The first week of SSA is booked with speakers and days generally run from 8-6 T-F with Monday being Move-In Day. On Saturday of this week, there is a leadership and community development activity.

Weeks Two-Five: We hit the ground running with course work and more speakers. Classes are held on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday. We invite more Lessons in Leadership speakers on our Leadership Wednesdays. During the evenings, we hold Flowzone so students have access to math tutors and writing center tutors to aid in their two SSA courses.