Don’t tell the Niagara University Opportunity Program (NUOP) that July is a time for rest and relaxation.
The 19 incoming freshmen who are involved in NUOP have been participating in a five-week summer program designed to integrate them into college life, introduce them to college coursework and reading, writing and study skills, and promote personal growth.
As part of the program, twice – on July 22 and 28 – the students volunteered at the Heart, Love and Soul food pantry in downtown Niagara Falls. There, the newest members of the NU community prepared and served lunch, assisted in the soup kitchen and played bingo with guests.
Then, on the afternoon of July 31, the same students presented posters at NU that showcased research they conducted on Hurricane Katrina. The project was inspired by their reading of Zeitoun, a nonfiction book that tells the story of Abdulrahman Zeitoun, a Syrian-American who traveled the flooded streets of New Orleans to help displaced residents in the days following the storm.
NUOP is designed for students who have the potential for and interest in furthering their education but are not admissible under Niagara University’s standard admissions criteria. The ultimate goal of the program is to make higher education possible for students who are both academically underprepared and economically disadvantaged. NUOP is funded jointly by the University and the New York State Arthur O. Eve Higher Education Opportunity Program (HEOP).