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The College Crusade of Rhode Island

  • The College Crusade of Rhode Island
  • 134 Thurbers Avenue Suite 111
  • Providence, RI 02905
  • (401) 854-5500
  • 1989

Program Description

The College Crusade of Rhode Island is an innovative nonprofit organization founded in 1989 to reduce high school dropout rates and increase educational and career success for low-income urban youth. Each year we serve approximately 3,900 Crusaders from Rhode Island's most economically disadvantaged families in Providence, Pawtucket, Central Falls, Woonsocket, and Cranston. We combine the steady, nurturing presence of caring adults with a rich array of programs that focus on academic enrichment, social and personal development, career awareness and exploration, and preparation for postsecondary education. Students who are members of The College Crusade go on to college at much higher rates than other students in the state's urban school districts. Since 2001, we have awarded over $30 million in college scholarships to more than 3,800 high school graduates.

Success Stories

Cindy Cesar'09 (Mount Pleasant High School) graduated from Rhode Island College in 2013 with a B.S in Biology and a minor in chemistry. Receiving a College Crusade scholarship made a difference. "During my college career, I knew that taking summer courses would be the best way to keep on track with my studies," she says. "was able to use the College Crusade scholarship to fund the entirety of my summer schooling, and that removed a lot of pressure because I was able to fully focus on my classes and not so much on how I was going to afford them.

Cindy has great memories of being a Crusader. "My experience was phenomenal," she says. "I met so many amazing mentors over the course of every important stage of my life, whether transitioning from middle school to high school, or helping me find out who I am and who I wanted to be as a person. The program that had the biggest effect on me was Crusade Summer Experience. It helped me break free of my shell and form bonds with my mentors and fellow Crusaders, most of whom remain very close friends of mine."

Services Provided

  • Academic enrichment/tutoring/study skills
  • Arts and cultural
  • Career exploration and counseling/internships
  • College admissions guidance and counseling
  • College transition and retention support
  • Financial aid advising/FAFSA completion
  • Mentoring
  • Parent/family services
  • SAT/ACT and other test preparation
  • Scholarships and last-dollar grants


Race & Ethnicity

  • American Indian or Native Alaskan: 1%
  • White: 8%
  • Asian or Pacific Islander: 4%
  • Hispanic/Latino: 60%
  • Other: 9%
  • African American: 18%

Education Level and
Number of Students

  • High School: 1400
  • Middle School: 1400
  • Elementary School: 0
  • Post-secondary: 0
  • Non-traditional: 1400

Populations Served

  • Academically At-risk
  • Academically High-performing


  • Between 50% and 75%

Colleges Attended
by Alumni

  • Boston University
  • Brown University
  • Bryant University
  • Community College of Rhode Island
  • Dean College
  • Johnson & Wales University-Providence
  • Lincoln Tech
  • Providence College
  • Rhode Island College
  • Rhode Island School of Design
  • Roger Williams University
  • Salve Regina University
  • University of Rhode Island
  • Wheaton College (IL)

Matriculation & Completion

  • 4-yr College Matriculation: 69%