StuyPrep Launches Eighth Year of Instruction

StuyPrep, currently in its eighth year, seeks to raise the visibility of the specialized high schools, especially Stuyvesant, within communities of color throughout New York City in an effort to make our school an attractive alternative for historically underrepresented families. We aim to empower students with access to free tutoring, a shared sense of community, and a higher awareness of the specialized high school network. With a commitment to diversity and inclusion, the Stuyvesant High School Alumni Association (SHSAA) is incrementally scaling the program back up to pre-pandemic levels.

In 2022, we partnered with Kweller Prep of Forest Hills, Queens to provide instruction to 24 students. Over the course of the program, due to changes in enrollment, we ultimately served 32 middle schoolers from across 5 schools. 60% of the students identified as Black or Latinx. We continue to learn about the experience that our students had in the program by building relationships with guidance counselors and families and keeping track of where their students are going to high school.

We currently know of 5 StuyPrep students who have gained admission to a specialized high school through our 2022 program, including 4 who got into Stuyvesant. We are awaiting results from a few more students, and we look forward to sharing more news in a future article about one student in particular – Jonathan Alvarenga – who will be attending Stuyvesant in the Fall of 2023.

Map of middle schools represented in the 2023 StuyPrep cohort

When Kent Kim ’05 and Christina Alfonso ’01 first started the program in 2016, the inaugural class was composed of approximately 30 students from IS 392 in Brooklyn. Prior to 2020, we were working with 2 test-prep companies serving 100+ students from 7 middle schools.

Today, the program, helmed by Executive Director Diego Segalini ’98 with the support of SHSAA Board Members Renee Stevens ’89 and David Gelobter ’84, has expanded to 75 students (vs 24 in 2022) that hail from over 40 middle schools throughout Brooklyn, Queens, and Manhattan. We are working closely with 5 test-prep companies and have successfully recruited an expanded cohort with 80% of students enrolled in this year’s program identifying as Black, Latinx, or Biracial.

StuyPrep 2023 Meet & Greet at Stuyvesant where students received study materials

Students have completed Part 1 (Spring) of the program, which occurred virtually across all cohorts. Part 2 (Summer) of the program begins July 8, with in-person instruction in Brooklyn with Bee Tutored, in Queens with Kweller Prep, and in Manhattan with Helicon. Five Points Learning and CAS Prep remain virtual for the summer. Then, in Part 3 (Fall), all cohorts will meet in-person at Stuyvesant for instruction that will be supplemented with student coaches from Stuyvesant’s Arista, Black Students League, and ASPIRA groups.

Another exciting note about this year’s cohort is Kweller Prep instructor, Sebastian Acevedo ’23, will be leading the cohort for their in-person Summer learning in Forest Hills, Queens before he heads off to MIT. We are overjoyed to have Sebastian come full circle as a former student in the Kweller Prep program and now as a Stuyvesant alum, taking on this special and meaningful role to lead by example and empower the next generation of middle schoolers.

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