The YMCA Black Achievers program is an academic achievement and career development initiative for middle school and high school youth and teens. The high school program is referred to as the Black Achievers Program and the middle school program is referred to as Youth Achievers, although both are operated under the umbrella of the Black Achievers Program. The name “Black Achievers” represents and describes the historical origin and mission of the program. However, today, the YMCA Black Achievers program is like the national YMCA movement, multi-racial and the Winston Lake Achievers program currently consists of students of numerous racial and ethnic groups.
The purpose of the program is “to help teens set and pursue high educational and career goals resulting in high school graduation and acceptance into and graduation from an institution of higher learning, and successful entry into a career of their choosing.” The high school component meets twice per month, once in a general session where there are sessions on a variety of topics related to college preparation and career development, ranging from test taking skills, SAT Prep, to job readiness. The second meeting is a cluster meeting in which students are broken into a career cluster of their choice (e.g. Computers and Technology, Law and Government, Communications, or Arts, Entertainment and Fashion) and they are involved in hands on and active career related activities. The program also offers students opportunities for service learning through volunteering, social development, networking and college tours.
Minimum Program Requirements
- Adherence to the Code of Conduct
- Registration Fee paid and or request for financial assistance through the Open Doors Program.
- A copy of each quarterly report card and or EOC scores submitted to the Director within one week after having received them.
Teen Achievers Benefit From:
Career Clusters – Focused career track workshops for Teen Achievers that provide comprehensive information on academic preparation and job skills. Clusters include, but are not limited to: Health & Medical, Communications, Business, Entrepreneurship, Engineering and Computer Training.
Career Seminars – A variety of workshops are held throughout the year targeting such topics as goal setting and career planning, interviewing “dos and don’ts”, dressing for success, choosing the right college and researching the best job.
Shadowing - Black Achievers takes two to four students for a half-day tour of their work place. This component provides students with first-hand exposure to careers of interest and gives them a glimpse into the “real world” of work. Transportation of this component is arranged through the Black Achievers office.
Speakers Bureau - Achievers provide motivational and informational speeches to Forsyth Public Schools. In their presentation, Achievers introduce and explain career possibilities and stress the value of higher education.
Mentoring/Tutoring - Through the YMCA One-on-One Program, Black Achievers are invited to support weekly tutoring session with local middle school students. Regardless of grade level, one-on-one tutoring is an important resource for enhancing students’ reading and math skills.
Adult Achievers are:
A selection of African-American professionals dedicated to community service.
- Volunteers to share experiences with Teen Achievers and other local youth.
- Living the program vision to be the leading resource in preparing young people for their futures, providing leadership experiences for existing and emerging community leaders, and increasing the community reinvestments of local businesses and organizations.
- The inheritors of the YMCA Black Achievers program that was founded in 1971 at the Harlem, New York, YMCA. The Winston Lake’s Black Achievers Program was established in 1996.
- Committed to give at least 40 hours year in a variety of these ongoing initiatives.
To become a Teen Achiever or an Adult Achiever, please contact Andrea Y. Hicks for more information at email@example.com or (336) 724-9205 x 114.