Gate of Opportunity Scholars
Frequently Asked Questions (from those selected for the program)
do I move-in as a new Gate Scholar and when will I start working?
Answer: Incoming freshman Gate
Scholars will move-in on Sunday, June 30, 2013 between 12:00-5:00pm (Eastern
Time). They will begin their summer work, Gate Orientation and a summer class
on Monday, July 1, 2013. New Gate Scholars should make their summer plans
will I be housed during the summer?
Answer: All Gate Scholars are
housed together during the summers. During summer 2013, the Gate Scholars will
live in Dana Hall. Each Gate Scholar should expect to room with a fellow Gate
Scholar during the summers. There will be separate halls for males and
there an orientation program specifically for Gate Scholars?
Answer: Yes! New Gate Scholars participate in Gate Orientation, which
begins with move-in day and continues with meetings and activities on July 1
and 2. During Gate Orientation, new Gate Scholars will get to know the other
Gate Scholars, begin learning about Berry’s campus and traditions and have many
of their questions addressed. New
Gate Scholars also take COM 203 (Introduction to Public Speaking) together
during their first summer at Berry, which develops a professional skill they’ll
need as a Gate Scholar, helps them get to know each other and starts them off
with a balance of academics and work. This course is considered part of the
Gate Orientation process; all new freshman Gate Scholars will take COM 203
together during their first summer as a Gate Scholar.
Question: Do new Gate Scholars participate in SOAR (Student Orientation, Advising and Registration) like all the other incoming freshmen?
Answer: Yes! Gate Scholars should plan to attend one of the five SOAR sessions in June, just like all the other incoming freshmen.At SOAR, you will register for your fall semester classes, receive your fall semester housing assignment, meet your academic advisor and start getting to know more about the Berry campus and student community.
Question: Can I move in earlier than Sunday, June 30? Would I be able to go ahead and move in after attending SOAR in June?
Answer: Unfortunately, no. Other Berry students will be living in Dana Hall this summer to take classes/work during the first part of summer. They will move out right before our new Gate Scholars move in, but not in enough time to allow the new Gate Scholars to move in early.
Question: Will I live in the same room this fall that I live in this summer? Will I have the same roommate?
Answer: Gate Scholars live together in the same residence hall during the summers, but do not live together during the academic year. Your summer housing assignment will not be the same as your fall housing assignment. All Gate Scholars move from their summer housing assignments to their fall housing assignments in August each year. Your roommate during the summers will be a fellow Gate Scholar (we assign roommates for the first summer, but Gate Scholars typically pick their own roommates each summer after that). Your fall housing assignment will be given to you at SOAR.
Question: Tell me
more about the COM 203 (Introduction to Public Speaking) class the new Gate
Scholars take during the first summer.
Answer: The course
lasts six weeks, beginning on Monday, July 1. Because it is a required part of
the Gate Orientation process the tuition and textbook for this class are paid
for by the Gate of Opportunity Scholarship. COM 203 is a required course for
all Berry students, regardless of major, so the course credits and grade will
count toward the Gate Scholars’ Berry College degree requirements.
Question: Are meals provided during the summers and breaks?
Answer: Gate Scholars are responsible for most of their meals during the summers and other breaks and should plan appropriately for grocery money. Dana Hall has a community kitchen, plus many Gate Scholars have a small refrigerator and microwave in their residence hall rooms. Many Gate Scholars choose to cook occasional meals together (especially weeknights and weekends), though they also often plan for individual meals on their own (especially breakfasts and lunches during the week). Berry College and the Gate of Opportunity Scholarship Program host several cookouts and other events during the summers that provide occasional meals, but Gate Scholars are responsible for the bulk of their meals.
there be social activities for me this summer?
Answer: Yes! The Gate of
Opportunity Scholarship Program organizes summer activities and events
throughout the summer, plus the Offices of Student Activities and Residence
Life also organize events for all Berry students who are on-campus during the
summers. Summer offers unique opportunities to explore and learn about the
campus, make new friends and adjust to campus life.
Question: How will my first job be assigned as a new Gate Scholar? When will I know where I'm working?
Answer: Your first job will be assigned based on what we learn about you and your interests, as well as the available jobs in the Berry community that will benefit from having a Gate Scholar. In addition to what we've learned about you in your Gate of Opportunity application and interview process, we will use information you provide in your Work Preference Form (one of the Enrollment Forms all new freshmen complete in Viking Web after paying the $250 housing and enrollment deposit). You will find out more about your work placement at SOAR in June.
many hours do I need to work each year as a Gate Scholar?
Answer: Gate Scholars work a
total of 4,500 hours over the course of their four years at Berry College,
broken down approximately as follows
Freshman Year: 1,050 hours
Sophomore Year: 1,200 hours
Junior Year: 1,250 hours
Senior Year: 1,000 hours
To stay on track,
Gate Scholars work 16 hours per week during the fall and spring semesters
of the freshman year and 20 hours per week during the fall and spring semesters
of the sophomore, junior and senior years. All Gate Scholars work 40 hours per
week during most of the breaks the rest of the year (summers and other breaks
during the academic year).
I receive any money from the hours I work as a Gate Scholar?
Answer: Yes. Gate
Scholars receive 20% (less taxes) of their work earnings. They currently
receive paychecks every two weeks. The remaining 80% is contributed back to
Berry as part of the Gate of Opportunity Scholarship agreement.
Question: Will my
20% (less taxes) work earnings be enough to cover all of my personal expenses?
Answer: No. The 20%
(less taxes) Gate Scholars receive in their paychecks is considered “pocket
money” and will not be enough for a Gate Scholar to live on year-round. Gate
Scholars will need additional financial support from their families for
expenses like groceries during the breaks, cell phone payments, car expenses
and other personal expenses. Personal expenses vary greatly from student to
student and family to family, but the typical Gate Scholar receives $50-$150
per month from their families for personal expenses. Gate Scholars and their
families are responsible for determining how much money is needed for personal
expenses and for covering the cost of these personal expenses.
I be working during the summers and breaks?
Answer: Yes. Gate Scholars work 40 hours per week during the
summer and other breaks. Your exact work schedule during breaks will be
determined by Gate Scholars’ work supervisors and the needs of the departments
in which they work.
Question: Will I
have “vacation time” away from campus as a Gate Scholar?
Answer: Yes. The
typical Gate Scholar has several weeks a year as “vacation time,” provided they
manage their work hours appropriately throughout the year (as explained above).
They are not expected to work 365 days/52 weeks a year, though how they manage
their work hours and “vacation time” is individually determined between each
Gate Scholar and his/her work supervisor(s). Most Gate Scholars take time away around
the holidays and during the summer months.
I need to work on holidays like Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day?
Answer: Most Gate Scholars do
not work on holidays like Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day. There are some
work departments - primarily the animal science units - that have work shifts
365 days a year, which means some Gate Scholars may have the opportunity to
work hours during the holidays. Such
work supervisors work closely with their Gate Scholars to ensure that the needs
of the department are met, while also ensuring the Gate Scholars can plan for
the holidays appropriately.
happens if a Gate Scholar gets behind on his/her work hours?
Answer: Since their work
earnings are part of the scholarship award agreement, Gate Scholars are
encouraged to stay on track with their work hours to avoid charges for any
work hours missed (as outlined above). If a Gate Scholar falls behind on work
hours, he/she will be responsible for paying back the difference in hours
not worked each year. Berry operates on the fiscal year, so Gate Scholars work
their hours from July 1 to June 30 each year. While most Gate Scholars stay on
track with their work hours (and we provide hours monitoring to help them track
their work hours), those who do fall behind will receive a bill for
the work hours missed at the end of each fiscal year. Likewise,
if a Gate Scholar has worked hours beyond the previous fiscal year requirement,
a credit will be applied to their subsequent fall tuition costs.
student health insurance included in my scholarship benefits?
I change jobs at Berry as a Gate Scholar?
Gate Scholars are placed in their first work assignment based on their areas of
interest and the needs of the campus. The goal of our work program is for Gate
Scholars to move from entry level freshman year to increasing levels of
responsibility and sophistication as they progress to senior year. This is
best accomplished by not changing work assignments frequently, so we do ask
Gate Scholars and their work supervisors to be committed to each other during
the first year. However, we will work with Gate Scholars and work supervisors
for a more suitable work assignment if appropriate after the first year.
Question: Will I
be able to take additional summer classes in the future as a Gate Scholar?
Answer: The COM 203 (Introduction
to Public Speaking) course is the only summer course expected of Gate Scholars
and is also the only summer course paid for by the Gate of Opportunity
Scholarship (because it is considered part of the Gate Orientation process). For
subsequent summers, Gate Scholars may choose to take summer classes at their
own expense, though they will be responsible for meeting the work hours
requirement as a Gate Scholar. The goal of the Gate of Opportunity Scholarship
Program is for students to focus on their full-time (40 hours per week) work
commitment during the summers. Most Gate
Scholars take their classes during the fall and spring semesters and focus on full-time
work during the summers.
if I want to participate in study abroad or an internship during my time as a
Gate Scholar at Berry?
Answer: Gate Scholars may apply
for a one-time "work release" from their Gate of Opportunity work
hours to take advantage of a study abroad or work experience. They must be
approved for "work release" through an application process and
may be released from up to 250 hours of their Gate of Opportunity work hours.
Gate Scholars must be in good standing academically and in the Gate
of Opportunity Scholarship Program to be approved for work release.
The nature of the study abroad or internship experience is also reviewed when
being considered for work release approval. This work release is intended
for a summer study abroad or internship experience. Gate Scholars are
responsible for any additional work hours missed and they are also responsible
for all additional costs associated with the study abroad or internship
am an athlete. Will I be able to balance the commitments of being a student, a Gate of Opportunity Scholar and an athlete?
Answer: Gate of Opportunity Scholars are able to participate in athletics and other activities at Berry. However, it is very important to understand
that the priorities of all Gate Scholars are as follows: 1) academics,
2) Gate of Opportunity Scholarship commitment, and 3) extra-curricular
commitments (athletics, fine arts and other activities). Gate Scholars who are
athletes work closely with their work supervisors and coaches to ensure that
both work commitments and team commitments are met. With careful planning and
dedication, it is certainly possible to balance a schedule of academics, work
and athletics as a Gate of Opportunity Scholar.
would like to run for class office, participate in student government, be involved in student
activities, join a club or otherwise be involved in extracurricular activities. Can I do these things as a Gate Scholar?
Answer: Gate Scholars are absolutely encouraged to be involved in leadership, service, social and other extra-curricular opportunities
that are of interest to them. Care should be given to balance academics with
work and other activities. It is very important to understand that the
priorities of all Gate Scholars are as follows: 1) academics, 2) Gate of
Opportunity Scholarship commitment, and 3) extra-curricular commitments
(athletics, fine arts and other activities). We encourage Gate Scholars to carefully select their priorities and to coordinate closely with their academic
advisors as they create their Plan4Ward strategies during their first year at Berry. (Plan4Ward is an exciting Berry
program that allows you to identify your strengths, abilities, interests and
aspirations and craft a four year plan to intentionally use those attributes
and achieve your goals.)
I be required to participate in other programs or activities as a Gate Scholar?
Answer: Yes! There will be a
formal dinner once a semester for Gate Scholars to spend time with their scholarship
donors/mentors. Further we offer various programs and events during the summers
and academic years to cover various topics, such as college success strategies,
personal strength assessments, team building, leadership training,
etc. Gate Scholars will be required to participate in these and other
developmental programs throughout their Berry career. Such programs and
activities are announced in advance to help Gate Scholars plan accordingly.
if my grades drop during the year? Do I have to maintain a certain GPA to keep the Gate of Opportunity Scholarship?
Answer: Gate Scholars are
expected to maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress, defined in the Berry
College undergraduate catalog, to maintain their scholarship. Gate Scholars who
fail to meet Satisfactory Academic Progress may lose their Gate of
Opportunity Scholarship. Gate Scholars are encouraged to take
advantage of all available resources on the campus including academic support,
first-year experience, the counseling center, academic advisors and other