At a Glance:
Our team comes to Boston this year from all over the United States. We represent six states: Alabama, California, Connecticut, Florida, Massachusetts, and New Jersey.
We enter this school year with a collective willpower to work with this school and this community.
Our Program Manager is Jamie Knauer.
Meet the team serving at John F. Kennedy Elementary School in Jamaica Plain:
Bradley T., 25, Tuscaloosa, AL
I serve because I believe that we are all responsible for the direction of our world’s future. In America, one of our greatest assets is diversity. With a more intentional use and a deeper respect for the multiplicity of lives in this country, we will curb any problem before it snowballs. I believe that, as a society, we will better be able to serve one another if we approach both domestic and world issues with a spirit of collaboration. I serve because I want to nurture that value in my fellow Americans.
Lily Marie A., 21, Florham Park, NJ
I heard about City Year while volunteering at a Habitat for Humanity site in the Greater Boston Area. I immediately imagined myself being a corps member serving in a classroom. After graduating from Boston University, I was itching to work with children extensively. I am not only motivated by service; I am stimulated by it. Serving with City Year will be a new way for me to motivate myself to continue on my path to becoming a pediatrician. It’s also an avenue for me to step into a classroom through being a supportive resource. Now, as a corps member, I am so excited to start building relationships with students, to help them realize their potential, and be a part of something much great than myself.
Amy B., 22, Tampa, FL
I serve because I see the power and value of education. I believe that every child should be able to dream of college. Every student deserves the same opportunities and resources in school that I received. However, I see inequalities in schools because of socio-economic differences, which students can not control. I am motivated to serve because I see the power and strength of my generation to make a difference in an effective way. I am inspired by our courage and relentless passion for the cause which makes me hopeful for the future.
Henry “Hank” C., 18, Madison, CT
I could go on for days about how much and why I love working with kids. But the main reason I decided to serve was because I just graduated high school and I felt like my future was being dictated by the expectations of society. I wanted to figure out what I wanted to do with my life, and I realized that spending a small fortune on college to find that answer was not the best option for me. After sifting through the dozens of gap-year books that were essentially guides to expensive vacations, I literally typed, “working with/helping/teaching kids” into Google and you can guess what showed up. I think that Boston is the greatest city on Earth; it has more history and spirit per mile than any other place in the world. I want to find out more about myself and the world through service to my community and to my nation.
Tiaree C., 18, Revere, MA
There was a college night for seniors at the high school I was attending. It was already a long day because of school and the afterschool programs I was involved in, but nothing had my attention like the City Year uniform. One City Year corps member held my full attention the whole night. He spoke with so much enthusiasm and joy, he made me smile, and I was no longer tired. I choose to serve in Boston because I was already familiar with the city and wanted to know a little more about it and the schools in Boston. This year, I hope to make a difference in a student’s life academically. From working with students from other countries, I hope to improve my Spanish. I believe that every student needs the opportunity to show off what they know, and my goal for this year is to help students show their knowledge.
Quazi H., 22, Cherry Hill, NJ
Inspiration is a necessary component of all great ideas and successes. I believe inspiration should not be a privilege. The strength and power that is drawn from inspiration is infinite. Motivation and dedication cannot be achieved without it. I want to make the most effective difference. I want to instill creativity and passion and I want to give everyone the tools they need to succeed. I want to INSPIRE. That is why I serve.
Connor M., 18, Dover, MA
I serve to give back. I went to public school for all 12 years of my education and if I could go back, I would not do it any other way. The only difference between my school and the Boston Public Schools is that the two towns that supported my school are the two wealthiest in the state. I received a very good education based solely on my zip code. I serve to give every child the education I received.
Meredith M., 22, Rowley, MA
Corps MemberI serve because I think that everyone should. I believe in the importance of service and the potential that it has to change a person, a community and a nation. The idealism that lives in young people is a resource that should be cultivated and put to use helping to solve some of our nation's most pressing issues. Education equality is an issue that I feel strongly about and I know that to achieve even a fraction of progress in reaching that goal, people need to get involved; people understand that in order to see the change, they must first be the change. City Year is a program that allows me to put my passion, my energy, and my idealism to work.
Robert P., 19, San Luis Obispo, CA
I serve because I am the first. I am the first in my family to receive a high school diploma. I am the first of my friends to leave a life of drugs and crime behind. I paved my own path. Now, I will help someone else to pave theirs. I serve because I am the first in my circle to help someone else be the first in their circle.
Laura S., 22, Shrewsbury, MA
I serve because the world is not an equal place. Even across the United States, from one street to the next, education, healthcare, socio-economic status, and the experience of theoretically universal policies differ markedly. Acknowledging this is conceding the falsehood of ubiquitous access to the American Dream. I choose to respond to this not with acceptance or a feeling of futility, but with a blazing, hardened outlook; it does not have to be this way. As a corps member I can see the quantifiable difference I can make on a small scale. That being said, the real reason I serve is to make drastic, institutional level change, which, no matter what my personal story or how genuine my passion, I can only do as part of a bigger whole. I serve because I can; I am just one, but without me, there would be one less.