Eyes on the Next Step

Eyes on the Next Step

The gym at MCNDHS was packed and full of excitement during the recent annual College & Career Fair

Fall is a time for pumpkins, foliage and college & career fairs! Colleges and employers from all over the area visit CDI’s schools every year to meet with students and help them gauge what path they’d like go down after high school. For those with college aspirations, having recruiters come to talk to them is key, as many of our young people work full time and are not always able to go on college visits. For students not looking to go into college right away, it gives them a chance to network with potential employers and is a first-hand glimpse at what some of their options are for heading right into the workforce after high school.

At Manhattan Comprehensive Night & Day High School’s recent fair, over 30 colleges and training programs visited to speak with our young people. There were also staff and volunteers on hand to help students navigate the fair, because as CDI Assistant Executive Director Margaret Aylward says, “The whole process can be overwhelming for students, many of whom are the first in their families to go to college. Volunteers engage with students about their aspirations and accompany them around the fair, and our staff is always working to educate them on things like financial aid, college choice and the difference between public and private institutions.”

A representative from Nontraditional Employment for Women (NEW) speaks with girls about jobs in construction

Passang Lhamo was thankful for the chance to speak face-to-face with admissions representatives. “It was so helpful to get specific answers to my questions,” Passang said. “The fair has given me and my friends a better idea of how the system works, both in terms of college and also alternative options. It is a great opportunity for us to know more.”

Spiking Things Up

The MCNDHS Eagles girl’s volleyball team have their eye on the championship

The MCNDHS Eagles girl’s volleyball veterans Jamina, Estefany and Ashianna have a lot of confidence going into this season. Hailing from the Ivory Coast, Dominican Republic and Guyana respectively, they were all new to the sport when they first joined the team. “I didn’t even know what volleyball was, but the other girls were playing and it looked fun. It was hard at first but now it’s easy and I’ve made a lot of friends” said Jamina.

The team practices 5 days a week – Monday through Thursday and Saturday mornings under the leadership of Coach Jennifer Marshall. Her approach is to cultivate a positive environment which can serve as a safe space for many of the girls. The impact is evident. “Sports are important for girls,” she said. “Not only does physical activity promote a healthy lifestyle, but it helps them mentally and socially. Plus, it exposes them to competition – and they bring that intensity to other aspects of their lives. Teachers have come up to me and told me students from the team who were struggling in class are doing better now. They’re more focused, getting better grades and are socially blossoming.”

The Eagles are in the midst of their season, and though they’re currently 2 – 4, they still have championship aspirations. “I think we can win it,” Jamina said. “A few of us on the team are veterans and we’re helping the younger girls. Everyone is on the same page and wants to win!” Their next game is against Voyages South Preparatory High School on November 16th.

On November 27th,
you’re invited to hear what youth have to say!

Comprehensive Development, Inc. (CDI) presents Youth Perspectives, an event where young people, ages 14-25, speak directly to educators, policymakers, workforce advocates and funders about what they need to succeed after High School. Please join us for a thoughtful, stimulating conversation as our youth experts and professionals in the field speak about gaps to be addressed, best practices and examine ways all of us can be involved in helping this next generation succeed.

There are still a few seats left!
If you’d like to attend, please RSVP to
seanpadden@cdi-ny.org no later
than November 20, 2018

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