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Our 5-Borough College Application March

On December 14, we held our first annual 5-Borough College Application March, timed to coincide with early deadlines for some of the nation's most competitive colleges. More than 600 seniors from our network of public schools marched to their local post offices and mail trucks to submit their college applications on-deadline, exhibiting the grit and determination that we foster in our students.

Approximately 200 of these students were dramatically affected by Hurricane Sandy, overcoming incredible adversity to get their college applications in on-time. All eight of our high schools participated and two of our middle schools sent students to cheer them on. Across our network more than 3,500 fellow students, teachers, family members, board members, Capital One volunteers, and local elected officials including NYC Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott joined in to show their support.

At our Gaynor McCown Expeditionary Learning School, Principal Traci Frey rallied her seniors to continue raising the academic bar. “Across our network, 93% of last year’s graduates were accepted to college – and today we challenge ourselves to do even better!”

At our Expeditionary Learning School for Community Leaders, Principal David O’Hara acknowledged the fortitude of seniors. “Many of you have overcome incredible adversity to get to this day– some of you have lost more than you could have imagined during the hurricane, others of you battle personal and financial challenges at home, and yet you have all persevered to get to this moment.”

Every school was visited by at least one news outlet, and some were visited by several, including ABC News 7, Wall Street Journal, NY1, NY1 Staten Island, News 12 Brooklyn, Daily News, and GothamSchools

GothamSchools Article
NY1 at WHEELS, McCown & Channel View
NY1 loved the idea of our College Application March so much that they sent reporters to three of our high schools: Our Washington Heights Expeditionary Learning School (WHEELS) in Manhattan, our Gaynor McCown Expeditionary Learning School in Staten Island, and our Channel View School for Research in Queens. NY1 did two separate broadcasts, the first from Staten Island (watch it here) and the second from Manhattan and Queens (link below). 

A special thanks to Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott for attending the WHEELS march, to WHEELS' assistant principal Jenny Rodriguez for her vision in originating the first march, to WHEELS' corporate partner Capital One Bank including Manhattan Market President James Covington, to Channel View's corporate partner jetBlue including Vice President Dave Ramage, our PR support team at Edelman, and our many board members who turned out to show their support.
Watch Now
Why Donate?

In addition to celebrating how far our seniors have come this year, our College Application March helped us broadcast our core message that all young people, regardless of background or circumstance, can achieve at high levels when given the right mix of challenge and support.

Every day, we provide students from all over the City, most of whom come from underserved communities, with an education that will prepare them for success in college, careers and citizenship. Our schools' demanding academic program deeply engages them and calls upon them to do more than they thought possible.

Equally important, our schools help students to develop the character skills such as grit, tenacity, resiliency and courage that a growing field of educators and scholars agree are important predictors of success in college and beyond. Please support us in bringing a quality education to our City’s young people.

Support Us

70% of our schools got A's on their 2012 Progress Reports, compared to just 26% citywide. 93% of our 2012 graduates were accepted to colleges - including Princeton, MIT, Bard, Amherst and Cornell - compared to just 63% citywide. The City's public school students need our support and we need yours.

I Will Give!
ABC News Covers Channel View March
Longtime education reporter Art McFarland made the trip to our Channel View School for Research, which was relocated due to Hurricane Sandy, for their college application march. His interviews with students capture the "Rockaway strong" spirit of the school, and values like tenacity and resilience that are cultural cornerstones across our school network.
Watch the Broadcast
Councilman Rallies Hahn School
Councilman Jumaane Williams, a big supporter of our Kurt Hahn Expeditionary Learning School in East Flatbush, led an inspiring press conference prior to their march. "What these students have accomplished represents everything we are working towards in this community," Williams remarked. "We want all our young people to have a safe place to learn and grow, and I cannot wait to see what leaders these students will become."
Read More
US Post Office at Every March
Big thanks to the USPS for helping us coordinate such a massive, citywide effort - we couldn't have done it without them. They even got in on the press coverage! A USPS reporter arrived at our James Baldwin School in Chelsea, and the story is now live on their blog In A New York Minute
Read the Dispatch!
News 12 Visits Leaders' March

News 12 Brooklyn paid a visit to the march at our Expeditionary Learning School for Community Leaders in Bensonhurst, where dozens of students, faculty and staff members were affected by Hurricane Sandy. Despite this, 100% of Leaders students got their college applications in on-deadline. The Leaders' march was also covered by the Brooklyn Daily Eagle.

Transforming Schools, Changing Lives
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