NEW YORK —College Summit New York will celebrate its 5,000 students and 40 partner schools at its Second Annual Awards Luncheon on Wednesday, May 25. The award recipients are being recognized for helping to create and foster a college-going culture in their schools, leading to increased college enrollment. The keynote will be given by Russell Simmons, CEO of Rush Communications and co-founder of Def Jam Records. Recording artist Talib Kweli will perform during the ceremony.
Twenty-four local high school seniors will each be awarded scholarships of $2,500, renewable annually contingent upon maintaining their GPA, from Darden Restaurants and UNCF (United Negro College Fund). The Darden-UNCF Recipe for Success Scholarships are awarded to College Summit students who have motivated their peers to go to college in exceptional ways and have been accepted into a two- or four- year accredited colleges or universities.
In addition, two high school seniors, John Boyce from Humanities and the Arts High School, and Marisch Perera from the CSI High School for International Studies, have been chosen to receive the region’s Darden Peer Leader of the Year Award. The award recognizes students who empowered their peers and built college-going culture in their schools.
“Seeing these students dedicate themselves not just to their own studies but to helping their peers is incredibly impressive,” said Chris Perry, Executive Director of College Summit New York. “We are honored to recognize the achievements of these students and to have Russell Simmons, Darden Restaurants and UNCF do the same.”
Angela Woods, director of the Darden Foundation and of Community Affairs for Darden Restaurants, Inc., addressed the winners, saying: “We would like to congratulate all the winners for reaching this important milestone. Your efforts are inspiring. We thank you for all you are doing to encourage your peers to prepare for a successful future.”
“We are excited to award this next generation of leaders scholarships that will enable them go to college, launch careers and give back to the community,” said Michael L. Lomax, Ph.D., UNCF President and CEO. “We salute these students who understand the importance of an education and the doors it can open.”
Other awards to be given during the ceremony include: the Deloitte Mind of an Innovator Award; the Spirit of an Inspired Student Award; Heart of a Great Teacher Award; and Evolutionary Award.
College Summit is a national nonprofit organization that provides schools with the tools and resources to help more first-generation and low-income young people enroll in and succeed in college. Data show that when schools implement College Summit school-wide, they see a 20% increase in college-going rates.
Schedule for Wednesday, May 25, 2011:
12:15-12:30 p.m. Welcome
12:30-12:45 p.m. Keynote Speaker Russell Simmons
1:00-1:30 p.m. Presentation of Awards
1:30-1:40 p.m. Performance by Talib Kweli
About College Summit: College Summit is a national nonprofit organization that helps high schools raise their college-enrollment rates by providing all students with a course in post-secondary planning, training teachers and counselors to build college-ready culture, equipping the most influential students in the school to help their peers apply to college, and helping school leaders track results. College Summit New York was established in 2005 and offers programs in 40 schools in New York City reaching 5,000 students in the 2010-11 school year. Last year, 80% of participating NYC seniors submitted at least one college application, a leading indicator of college enrollment. Additionally, College Summit New York partner high schools have, on average, raised their school-wide college enrollment rates by more than 30%.
UNCF—the United Negro College Fund—is the nation’s largest and most effective minority education organization. To serve youth, the community and the nation, UNCF supports students’ education and development through scholarships and other programs, strengthens its 38 member colleges and universities, and advocates for the importance of minority education. UNCF institutions and other historically black colleges and universities are highly effective, awarding 21 percent of African American baccalaureate degrees. UNCF administers more than 400 programs, including scholarship, internship and fellowship, mentoring, summer enrichment, and curriculum and faculty development programs. Today, UNCF supports more than 60,000 students at over 900 colleges and universities across the country. Its logo features the UNCF torch of leadership in education and its widely recognized motto, "A mind is a terrible thing to waste."