At a Glance:
Through the Diplomas Now initiative, we will be working to transform the DMC this year.
Diplomas Now is a whole school reform program that aims to improve school climate and performance via a collaboration between schools, City Year, Talent Development, and Communities in Schools.
We will host appreciation events for teachers and “Panther Pride” assemblies aimed at recognizing student’s success and improvements.
Our Program Manager is Josh Waxman.
Meet the MFS Investment Management team serving at Dever-McCormack Upper School in Dorchester:
Vanessa H., 23,k Santa Rosa, CA
There are 1.4 million gang members in the US, among them are my friends and family. Thirteen young people die from homicide every day. Five of them are my friends. Every year one million students drop out of high school. Ten of them have come from my family. I serve to open the doors for the next generation of my family. My decisions today affect the well being of those around me and those who do not have a voice yet. I serve because my friends and family should not be statistics, but names on degrees. After this year, my second year at City Year, I plan on attaining my master’s degree in social work to continue my passion for social justice and education.
Stephen J., 24, Media, PA
I am a 2012 graduate of West Chester University of Pennsylvania and served as a corps member last year at the Dever-McCormack Upper School. I serve because I believe the wasted resource of young minds that hold within the power to literally change the world is one of the saddest, most frustrating issues of our nation. I serve because the moment you see the fire to want something better in a young person, starting deep within, to their heart and to their mind, a fire so ferocious it will burn those that even try to impose their will between a student’s right to actualize their potential and say, “No, I will not be another statistic,” you realize this is not work. These 10 months, the long nights, and early mornings are really a gift. I can thank my 7th graders for that gift.
Carolyn M., 24, Attleboro, MA
I serve because social-emotional health isn’t something that comes naturally to everyone, and it’s our responsibility to be a role model for our youth. During my corps year, I learned that many of my students needed specific coaching on how to deal with emotions and frustrations that they encountered every day at school. I saw significant changes in my students, and I know that I’ve set them up for success later in life by providing them the skills they need to handle emotional stress. As a Team Leader, my goal for this year is to remain consistent with my students by coaching my corps members effectively so that they can be role models for their students. I strive to achieve a legacy of strong emotional supports among City Year members at my school in order to help our students thrive in school, career and life.
Michael B., 24, Brooklyn, NY
I serve because education should be a right, not a privilege handed to you because of your ZIP code. I serve because my father was a professor for many years, and I honor his legacy every time I walk into school and help a child learn. I serve because we need more schools and fewer prisons. I serve to join a legacy of proud Americans joining together to further a cause greater than ourselves. I serve to make sure that the next generation of leaders can go to college and change the world.
Bradley C., 22, Worcester, MA
I serve because I believe in community. I believe that strong communities become even stronger when there are people serving it. Strong communities will in turn produce strong individuals. I also serve because I believe in justice. To me, justice is ensuring that other people receive the same advantages, namely a good education. A good education opens many doors for the future. Education is the answer to the success of the youth.
Julia D., 22, Rollinsford, NH
My sixteen years of schooling have done nothing if not open my eyes to the drastic injustices that I believe exist within our nation’s education system. Sometimes it seems like those from higher socioeconomic status get an education that better prepares them for success in all aspects of their life. I serve to combat these systemic inequalities. Indeed, as one who was privileged enough to graduate from college, I feel it is now my civic duty to work to help those who are not as lucky. I serve because my humanity is tied to that of my students’. I serve because with City Year, I know I can make a difference.
Ellen E., 22, Canton, CT
I serve because I believe quality and fair education is the cornerstone of a strong democracy and a powerful community. After graduating from a liberal arts college, I knew I wanted to do something that would allow me to purposefully give back to my community and make a difference, no matter how small. Education has always been an important part of my life, and I want to be able to share my passion and dedication with young people so that we, as a society, challenge ourselves to be better citizens and leaders.
Dan F., 22, Glen Gardner, NH
I serve because I believe that the achievement gap is one of the most pressing civil rights issues of my generation. I serve because I believe that we can live in a society more equal than today’s, and that education is the first step toward achieving that. I serve because I believe in giving back to others, as our humanity is intertwined. I serve because we can change the world.
Rachael K., 21, Pennsauken, NJ
After studying for four years at Brandeis University, I had heard a lot about social justice, but I wanted the opportunity to turn theories into action. Being a first generation college graduate was a blessing, and I knew I needed to give back and pass on this gift. I serve because I believe in the power of the youth and that every child has the right to whatever resources they need to get them to graduation. Putting this idea into action begins with me and my fellow City Year corps members. We are no longer sitting on the sidelines discussing what needs to be done, but we are in our student’ schools, communities, and lives working together to make a difference. I serve to give power to the voices that have been wrongfully silenced and pushed aside. I serve for a brighter tomorrow.
Perri K., 21, Raleigh, NC
Midway through my senior year at Elon University, I realized the career path I was on was not the one for me. Yearning to serve those in need, I discovered City Year and everything seemed to fall into place. I serve because I passionately believe in the City Year founding story of Ubuntu, the idea that "I am person through other people, my humanity is tied to yours." Hoping to ultimately obtain my master’s in social work, City Year allows me to give a year of hands-on service with a community that needs additional support.
Jessica L., 22, Wolcott, CT
I serve because every child deserves to experience security and true acceptance. I seek to contribute to the goal of providing a safe and comfortable learning environment that fosters both academic and personal growth. I truly believe in our Whole School, Whole Child model because it recognizes the significant relationship between social-emotional development and cognitive skills. Mahatma Gandhi’s inspiring words, “Be the change you wish to see in the world,” resonate with me in every decision I make. Therefore, as a City Year corps member, I take full responsibility in actively seeking a fair and just education system, not only in the Boston Public School system but also across the United States. Most importantly, I serve for others and for our humanity.
Calvin L., 22, Gainesville, FL
I serve because adults in my school encouraged me to learn. I serve because all students deserve to succeed. I serve because the quality of education should not be determined by what ZIP code you live in. I believe that we can do better for our children. I serve because each child has the greatest potential to succeed, and we don’t know who will change the world for the next generation.
Eboni M., 21, East Orange, NJ
I serve with City Year because its mission is in line with my own mission and story. Coming from a low-income area, I know all too well what it is like to not only desire, but to need assistance in empowering and strengthening a community. I also know that I could easily have been just another statistic of an African American girl without a way, and that I actually am a statistic as a black female with an Ivy League bachelor’s degree on her way to earning a graduate one and staying on the path to being far more successful in the future. I’m here to help create even more positive statistics like what I have been fortunate to be. Simply put, I do this work because it is the kind of work that is needed in America today. If this is not enough, I have one hundred and one reasons more to explain why I serve.
Samantha M., 23, Downey, CA
I had the privilege of access to many resources when I was growing up. As a woman of color in a rapidly changing racial community in Los Angeles, there were many doors held open for me because I was the so-called “model minority.” I serve because there is no “model minority,” but there are those with less access to resources. I want to help bridge that gap so that the youth I serve will not have to struggle for what they deserve, like equal access to education. I am not yet a part of the Dorchester community, but I understand the importance of community to a person’s success. I serve to contribute to the growth of communities, to give back what I have been privileged enough to have received.
Claudia P., 24, Marina, CA
I serve because of my past. I was provided with resources throughout my school years. The help I received ranged from college students coming to my middle school to hold workshops to being a participant in outreach programs during high school. My schools were recognized as low performing, and as a low-income and first generation college student, I was presented with unique opportunities. In college I learned about social justice, and I serve because I believe that there are still many injustices, one being educational inequality. I serve for the future; the children will be our future and need a strong foundation. I believe these students deserve opportunities, resources and a great education. I serve for the present, utilizing my past experiences to help the future, which lies in the hands of our present day students.
Philip P., 23, Acton, MA
After moving away from Boston for college, I knew that I wanted to come back to my community in order to serve. I choose to serve with City Year because it is a very well-run organization with an excellent model for service. I also know that City Year has an impressive, measurable, positive impact in the schools they serve, and I wanted to be a part of this outstanding organization. I know that each child in this country deserves a great education and I will do all I can to make sure no more children do not reach their potential because they did not get an excellent education. I hope that I will be able to build meaningful and impactful relationships with the students, teachers, and community I serve.
Alexandra R., 23, Miami, FL
I serve because I believe in the power of public service. I serve with City Year, specifically, because I believe that an equal educational opportunity for children is an issue that needs addressing. I serve with City Year because I believe all children should have the right to realize their potential, and the reality is many are not given the chance to tap into it. I serve with City Year because I have both attended and worked at schools that have ample resources and support, and I have seen them thrive because of it; I realize not all schools are like these schools. By serving with City Year, I hope to boost up children who feel defeated, spark within them an enthusiasm for education, and encourage them to take charge of their learning.
Surav S., 22, East Lyme, CT
The world continues to have many injustices. The brand of the United States has always been the “land of opportunity,” but this is simply a phrase that’s not achievable in reality. Many individuals are under circumstances where opportunities to be successful are limited, where many of these situations are created by a product of historical and systemic oppression. To alleviate these struggles, I want all children and youth to have the opportunities to become leaders of the future. I serve to work with the youth to bring education as a human right and to support my students, but I want to equally learn from them. Throughout City Year I want to bring idealism to reality, and bring high quality education to all because I know all the students of the world are future innovators and human rights defenders. I know every child with the extra push and motivation can change the world for their own future.
Kate S., 22, Marshfield, MA
I proudly serve with City Year Boston because it’s not all about me. I serve because a good quality education should be available and accessible to all people, not just those who were born into a privileged life. I serve not to “save” the people in these communities of Boston, but to grow and learn from and with them. This year of service is my choice and my commitment to illuminating the fact that education matters.
Phillip S., 22, West Lafayette, IN
I serve because I believe it is logically the greatest thing I can do with my time. I have been blessed with many opportunities in my life, most of which are not available to the students I work with, and I believe it would be a waste of those gifts not to share them who could use them most. I believe that City Year is the most effective way to serve the community at large given my current skill set. No person deserves to have a lower quality of life based on any factor outside their control, and I believe that in serving I will be doing what I can to bring all people of our nation onto equal ground. Above all else, City Year has given me the opportunity to work with young people make the most fulfilling life possible for themselves, and that is why I serve.