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Student Engagement & Enrollment Services:First Star Old Dominion University Academy

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Group of students walking outside from Webb University Center.

Welcome! We're Glad You're Here!

First Star's Foster Youth Academies are the country's first long-term college-prep programs for high school foster youth that include four immersive residential summers on a university campus and monthly sessions during each school year. We keep foster youth on track for high school graduation and prepare them for higher education and adulthood by providing specialized programming that addresses the academics, life skills, and adult supports unique to students in foster care.

Below are opportunities and resources available to members of First Star Old Dominion University Academy. Don't hesitate to join us, we're waiting on you. Apply today!



Application Timeline:

If you've missed the deadline, don't fear! Still fill out an application so someone on staff can contact you for our next chapter.

  • Scholar Application Due Date: Extended
  • Scholar Interviews: Thursday, Sept. 8 - Monday, Sept. 12
  • Scholar Acceptance Notification: Wednesday, Sept. 14
  • Staff Training Sessions: Tuesday, Sept. 13 - Friday, Sept. 16
    • Click here if you'd like to be a student volunteer!
  • Program Start Date: Saturday, Sept. 17

First Star Academy Programming Includes:

Academy Program

4 year college prep program for foster youth focused on academic and life skills.

Summer Academy

Intensive 3-4 week residential enrichment program on university campus.

Scholar Advisory Committee

Leadership opportunity for scholars focused on becoming civically engaged and enacting change in their local communities.

STEM Academy

Monthly Virtual sessions and access to online courses that focus on science, technology, engineering, arts, and math.

Virtual Engagement

Weekly mentoring and tutoring sessions, as well as an open environment to connect and build community through virtual hangouts.

Caregiver Engagement

Seminars and workshops that provide tools to caregivers to become advocates for their youth.

Alumni Program

Offered to scholars who graduate the Academy as a resource for those transitioning to adulthood.




First Star Alumni photo

What's the best part of being a First Star scholar?

"First star has made me feel like I really can do anything even when the world doesn't seem too kind to me. It really changes your perspective when you have a support system like First Star. I had some rough patches in high school, but made it through thanks to the help of First Star staff. You can't help but feel overjoyed when you have this support system that cares for you in a way that no one else can. You can smile and you can become a family with people you just met. First Star is a place where you can believe in yourself for the first time."

- Kyla Colburn

2021 First Star Graduate University of Utah






Upcoming Meetings:

All meetings will take place on Saturdays at the Student Recreation Center in rooms 1000 and 1004 from 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

  • September 17th, 2022
  • October 15th, 2022
  • November 19th, 2022
  • December 10th, 2022
  • December 17th, 2022

Sample Meeting Agenda:

Time: Activity:
8:30 - 9:00 a.m. Students Arrive
9:00 - 9:30 a.m. Breakfast & Review of The Day
9:30 - 10:00 a.m. Team Activity
10:00 - 11:00 a.m. SAT Prep/Vocab Quiz
11:00 - Noon SAT Prep/Math Bootcamp
Noon - 1:00 p.m. Lunch
1:00 - 2:30 p.m. Life Skills Workshop/Guest Speaker
2:30 - 3:30 p.m. Homework Help
3:30 - 4:30 p.m. Free Time/ Students Depart

ODU First Star Sponsors