Success Academy Graduates Second Class, With 100% of Scholars Receiving College Acceptances
Success Academy – June 7, 2019
**FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, JUNE 6, 2019**
SUCCESS ACADEMY GRADUATES SECOND CLASS, WITH 100% OF SCHOLARS RECEIVING COLLEGE ACCEPTANCES
Scholars Will Attend Colleges Ranging From U. Penn to Pitzer, Having Collectively Received $6.3 Million in Institutional Grants and External Scholarships
New York, NY — With tassels moved from right to left and caps tossed high, Success Academy’s second graduating class exalted in their achievement this afternoon at the John L. Tishman Auditorium of The New School. The Class of 2023, so-named for their anticipated college graduation date, is the second cohort of scholars to graduate from New York City’s top-performing public charter school network.
The Class of 2023 started as kindergarteners in 2006, when the network opened its first school in Harlem — and 13 years later, the 26 seniors are graduating with 100% of them accepted to college. This fall, scholars will head off to colleges across the country, including University of Pennsylvania, Tufts, Howard University, Mount Holyoke, and Pitzer College, as well as many of the SUNY campuses.
“I’m so proud of the Class of 2023,” said Eva Moskowitz, founder and CEO of Success Academy. “It feels like just yesterday they were five-year-olds lining up against the blue wall on 118th and Lenox waiting to shake my hand as their principal. They have surmounted every barrier the world had for them, and now they are headed to colleges around the country. These scholars are prepared for anything.”
Lawrence S. Bacow, President of Harvard University and one of the most widely respected leaders in American higher education, gave the commencement address and offered the graduates advice for their next chapter, “Honor the relationships you have built while making new ones. Embrace the challenge of trying to understand the world not just through your perspective but through that of others….Be wary of trying to over-plan your life. Life will take many twists and turns and you must learn to live with uncertainty and take advantage of opportunity when it hits you in the face — because it will.”
“President Bacow, your presence here today is a powerful statement of what is rarely acknowledged,” said Moskowitz, “that K-12 and higher education are a crucial continuum, a single glorious arc of possibility for children and families. We are so grateful to you for seeing and valorizing that, and giving us energy and courage, as we work to boldly reimagine public education for tens of thousands of students.”
All but two of the graduating class are the first in their families to attend college, and one-third are first-generation Americans. All are students of color, and many have overcome some extraordinary obstacles to make their ambitions come true — from navigating the financial aid process as a Dreamer (and ultimately receiving a scholarship from TheDREAM.us), to working 15 hours a week on top of school, to persisting through a speech impediment. The class was collectively offered $6.3 million in financial aid, including a full ride to the University of Wisconsin through the Posse Foundation. They plan to pursue a wide range of disciplines, including biology, engineering, environmental studies, law, and music.
Success Academy High School of the Liberal Arts (HSLA) was recently identified by the Independent Budget Office as one of only five high schools that enrolls the city’s highest performing black students. With a collegiate liberal arts curriculum that prioritizes student-led inquiry, advanced problem-solving, and cross-disciplinary perspectives, HSLA offers an honors STEM track, which progresses through a sequence of Electrical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, and Computer Science, and an honors Humanities program. HSLA also offers a wide range of electives, clubs, and competitive teams, along with internship opportunities and a robust summer experiences program. Located in midtown Manhattan, at 33rd Street and Park Avenue, HSLA will serve almost 800 students next year, with approximately 120 slated to graduate.
Scholar speaker Ashley Rivas urged her classmates to take the pioneering spirit that defined their K-12 years with them into the future. “Remember the things that created us, remember how we learned to dream bigger and better together over the years,” she said. “I hope we continue to forge ahead with the passions that we’ve discovered here, and that we continue to be the unstoppable scholars we became at this school.”
Class of 2023 Acceptances & Decisions
*Bolded names indicate the colleges and universities that our scholars will attend next fall.
Carnegie Mellon University
Kent State University
Mount Holyoke College*
Ohio Wesleyan University
Olin College of Engineering
Stony Brook University
SUNY Buffalo State*
University of Maine – Farmington
University of Pennsylvania*
University of Rochester
University of Wisconsin*
ABOUT SUCCESS ACADEMY CHARTER SCHOOLS
Founded in 2006, Success Academy Charter Schools are free public K-12 schools open to all children in the state through a random lottery. With 46 schools across Brooklyn, the Bronx, Manhattan, and Queens, Success Academy enrolls 17,000 students, primarily children of color from low-income households in disadvantaged neighborhoods: 74% receive free or reduced-price lunch, 94% are students of color, 16% have disabilities, and 8% are English language learners. Success Academy schools received more than 17,600 applications for 4,100 open seats for the 2019-20 academic year. For more information about Success Academy, go to Successacademies.org and virtualtour.successacademies.