“Developing and maintaining transformative programs for at-risk school students.”
Services to Youth (STY) serves as the leading facet for our umbrella program, The GNY Empowerment Academy. GNY has a history of strong partnerships that we expanded to enhance the offering and resources we are able to provide The Academy’s participants, with the goal to improve the self-esteem and confidence of young women to prepare them for their next phase of life and ensure that they are “on track” with their educational needs, especially in the wake of home schooling due to COVID, through mentoring and leadership development.
Through collaboration among Chapter members and Facets, GNY has been able to design a program that has “something for everyone” from vision boarding sessions to book club to animation workshops and more. We are able to learn the participants’ hobbies and preferences and add programming to fit. Our Chapter-wide initiative to focus on science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM), provides the framework for our initiatives and drives our efforts to partner with other organizations to offer STEAM-centric programs that help build a pipeline to graduation for young adults.
In partnership with Marshall Croney Enterprises LLC, STY implemented the iChoose Mentoring Program for 9th grade girls’, focusing on leadership, self-development, and public speaking. The program is designed to help students achieve five goals: 1) identify with the 16 values of leadership, 2) take ownership of their choices, 3) practice leadership values and develop those skills 4) evaluate themselves with the applied knowledge and 5) take turns guiding small group discussions. Additionally, STY has created a 12th Grade College Readiness Series to support a cohort of high school seniors and their families with the college application process.
STY has also continued our legacy work with STEMulate – a Links-NSBE, Jr. Chapter, by expanding our cohort to include students from Frederick Douglass Academy. NSBE Jr. will continue its dynamic and interactive STEM program with the support of a partnership with Engineering Tomorrow. In 2015, a national partnership between the Links, Incorporated and National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) was formed to address and remedy the low percentage of African-Americans graduating with engineering degrees.
An important pipeline initiative developed to address this problem, was to launch NSBE Jr. Chapters around the country, targeting students from 3rd – 12th grades. We are very proud that our chapter is a part of this effort. Our target cohort of STEMulate students will be African-American 9th and 10th grade females recruited from high schools and through not for profit organizations.
The NSBE-Jr. mission goes beyond building STEM awareness; it teaches them leadership principles and college preparedness, grooms them to succeed academically; it also strives to increase the number of culturally responsible black engineers to succeed professionally and positively impact the community. To that end, STEMulate aligns with the core values of all chapter members, and enables everyone to contribute; we are proud that this endeavor is part of our Umbrella Program, with support from all five of our Chapter Facets.