A GSSW community outreach initiative, the Bridge Project is designed to break the cycle of poverty by providing educational and career opportunities to children, youth and families in four of Denver's public housing neighborhoods. Founded in 1991, the Bridge Project is the only direct service program in the nation administered by a graduate school of social work.
Through after-school and summer programs, Bridge Project students gain skills in reading, technology, robotics, outdoor education and social interaction. Volunteers provide customized one-on-one tutoring and mentoring to help prepare students to graduate from high school and attend college or trade schools. Bridge also provides these students with financial support for college tuition, books, supplies and health insurance.
The Bridge Project is one of many field internship sites for GSSW's MSW students.
The Bridge Project''s success in preventing childhood and adolescent problems and improving academic achievement is documented in the recent book Risk, Resilience, and Positive Youth Development: Developing Effective Community Programs for High-Risk Youth: Lessons from the Denver Bridge Project , (Jenson, J.M., Alter, C.F., Nicotera, N., Anthony, E.K., & Forrest-Bank, S.S. (2013). New York: Oxford University Press). The book's lead author is Philip D. and Eleanor G. Winn Professor for Children and Youth at Risk Jeff Jenson, GSSW's Associate Dean for Research, who works closely with Bridge to conduct ongoing evaluation of the program's effectiveness.