ACE Program

Welcome! We're excited to have you as a GateWay Gecko student

The ACE (Achieving a College Education) Program, began in the summer of 1988, targeting high school students who may consider earning a college degree as an unattainable goal. This program is designed to help create a smooth transition process from high school to college.

We serve a total of 120 students in four career paths each year. High school sophomores are recruited annually, between August through December, from Phoenix and Tempe Union High School Districts and Charter Schools.

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Program Applicant Requirements

High school sophomores who have taken at least 6 high school credits at the time of the application submission and who meet one or more of the following criteria:

  • First generation to attend college
  • Single parent home
  • Underrepresented group
  • Economic hardship
  • Environmental factors, e.g.,
    • Works 10–30 hours weekly 
    • Foster care 
    • Lives in temporary housing 
    • Teen parent
  • Legacy-sibling or relative of an ACE participant

Application Steps

Application Process

Application Process

1. Complete and submit an online application

You will need:

  • Unofficial copy of your high school transcript (will need to upload)

  • Two (2) recommender email addresses

2. Your completed application will be evaluated per the selection criteria listed above

3. You will be notified by letter on the status of your application by February of your sophomore year.

4. If you are accepted into the ACE program, you will receive a scholarship offer to attend the GateWay ACE program for your junior and senior year.

5. You will be required to attend a New ACE Student/Parent Orientation

6. Application deadline: Tuesday, December 14, 2021


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Additional Information

Additional Information

Class Days

Fall and Spring Semester: Every Saturday

Summer Semester: Monday – Thursday

Participating High Schools*

  • Camelback High School
  • Central High School
  • Carl Hayden High School
  • Metro Tech High School
  • Cesar Chavez High School
  • GateWay Early College High School
  • Academies at South Mountain 
  • Mountain Pointe High School
  • Tempe High School
*List represents only a partial number of high schools where we recruit.

Pathways/ACE Tracks*

The following lists include just some examples of classes you will take during your participation in each of the specified career pathways.

  • Business/Entrepreneurial/Management 
  • Health
  • S.T.E.M.
  • Art/Visual Arts/Performance

* Please Note: Classes offered are subject to change based on student enrollment and class availability.

Program Location and Contact Information

ACE Office Location

Main Building, Room MA1372(B)
GateWay Community College
Washington Campus
108 North 40th Street
Phoenix, Arizona 85034

Hours of Operation

Fall and Spring Semester

Monday – Thursday: 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Saturday: 8 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Sunday: Closed

Summer Semester

Monday – Thursday: 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Friday – Sunday: Closed