In 1994, Nancy Hoffmann, Patsy Howard and Patricia Young established REACH Prep at Greenwich Academy. REACH Prep realized their vision to provide a challenging and enriching educational experience to underserved African-American and Latina girls from the surrounding communities. Their belief in access, opportunity and excellence for underserved children became the foundation of REACH Prep. In 2000, REACH Prep expanded its services to include boys, and has placed more than 340 students into outstanding educational environments.
Today REACH Prep helps motivated and talented Black and Latino students from underserved communities in Fairfield and Westchester Counties and the Bronx gain admission to and thrive in rigorous independent schools. Upon placement, students benefit from a twelve-year educational continuum, including comprehensive academic enrichment, leadership training and supplementary individual and family guidance, which prepares them to succeed at competitive colleges. Participating schools generously award more than $4.5 million each year in financial aid to qualified REACH Prep Scholars.
Adam Rhodie, headmaster of The Greenwich Country Day School describes the positive impact a REACH scholar brings to their school: “When a REACH Prep Scholar walks across our stage as a graduate, I do not only think about the tremendous gifts Greenwich Country Day have bestowed upon them. I also reflect, with gratitude, on all they have given to our community and how they enriched our school. Their enthusiasm, optimism, resilience and sheer presence make our school a stronger and more vibrant institution.”
When students enter REACH Prep, it marks the beginning of their twelve-year, and ultimately lifelong, partnership with REACH Prep.
THE REACH PREP MODEL
PREPARATION FOR INDEPENDENT SCHOOLS
REACH PREP identifies high achieving, motivated Black and Latino fourth grade students from underserved communities in Fairfield and Westchester counties and the Bronx. The admissions process is rigorous and selective. Approximately twenty Scholars are accepted to REACH Prep and begin their twelve-year journey through our program.
Newly accepted students attend Prep Academy, a rigorous fifteen-month academic program that takes place on the campus of The Greenwich Country Day School. Prep Academy offers academic enrichment taught by independent school faculty. This intensive, interdisciplinary program is designed to prepare students for the academic environment they will encounter when admitted to an independent school. Classes mirror the small size, accelerated pace and high expectations typical of independent school education.
Independent School Placement
During the fall of fifth grade, REACH Prep guides each family through the independent school admissions process, including assistance with the application and applying for financial aid as well as preparing students for the interview process and ISEE testing.
INDEPENDENT SCHOOL SUCCESS
(Middle and High School)
A Scholar’s academic progress is closely monitored and nurtured through personalized contact, school visits and grade level-specific programming. A REACH Prep counselor supports each Scholar from middle school through high school, identifying areas in which REACH can provide individualized guidance and academic support such as tutoring, test preparation, workshops and other critical support that promote success.
Summer Enrichment Programs and Opportunities
REACH Prep strives to provide a constructive and enriching summer experience for Scholars. Through REACH Prep facilitated programs and summer opportunities offered by generous partners, our goal is to provide transformative, and otherwise unobtainable, experiences for personal growth, early career exploration and academic enrichment.
COLLEGE SUCCESS (High School and beyond)
As part of our mission, we want to ensure our Scholars succeed and graduate from college.
REACH Prep provides supplementary and complimentary college guidance to enhance the counseling Scholars receive from their independent schools. REACH Prep is committed to make certain each of our Scholars has the best college options so that the goal of college completion will be achieved. Scholars receive individualized and family support including assistance with the application process, SAT/ACT test and interview preparation, college campus tours, navigating the financial aid process and ultimately making the optimal college choice. REACH Prep Scholars graduate from college within four to six years at the remarkable rate of 90 percent.
REACH Prep’s goal is to provide ongoing support for college students to maximize their success in their academic and professional pursuits. During college, REACH Prep assists Scholars with resume preparation, career counseling, navigating academic resources, referrals and professional internships.
REACH Prep Scholars become Alumni of the program upon graduation from college and join an ever-growing group of engaged young leaders who are exceptionally prepared and positioned to make a significant difference in their communities.
The life-changing impact REACH Prep has on its Scholars is best understood through the reflection of an alumnus, Jetson Leder-Louis, REACH Prep Cohort 9, The Masters School ’10, Caltech ’14 and a current PhD Student at MIT Economics: “REACH Prep creates people who can change their own communities, who can work towards the betterment of all those around them because they’ve been given the opportunity to better themselves and have been instilled with the values of both excellence and honor. REACH is both changing the lives of individuals in very tangible ways as well as paving the road for broader social change.”
For more information, please call 203-487-0750 or visit reachprep.org.