Please make a donation to support New Urban Arts’ summer programs at bit.ly/NUA-Give.
What do you think happens when we don’t expect anything from our most vulnerable young people over the summer—when we don’t give them a reason to use their brains? Consider this: More than half of the achievement gap between lower- and higher-income youth can be explained by unequal access to summer learning opportunities. As a result, low-income youth are less likely to graduate from high school or enter college.
What do you think happens when we challenge and engage our youth over the summer? Earlier this year, New Urban Arts student K wrote her college essay about her experience in our summer programs. I asked her if I could share it with you:
[Summer] was a whole different level of learning. New Urban Arts provided me with one of the most stimulating and creative experiences that I’ve ever had, and it is something that I will not forget…. I loved to write but I never understood how I could channel my sentiments onto paper in such a way that it’d be as if the ink was embedded onto the page. How I could move others with my words; create melodies from the abyss that housed my thoughts? It was last summer that I translated the words in my head. It was last summer that I gave my words a voice; that I allowed the voice to speak….
In February, K was accepted into Northeastern University’s Torch Scholars Program for students who have “persevered despite difficult family situations, cultural barriers, financial challenges, or unfavorable educational environments.” K credits our summer program with giving her the confidence to apply.
Although we focused on writing, it was also about pushing boundaries. The empowerment and confidence that I gained over the summer cemented my goal of pursuing my ambitions in life…. I was pushed to do things that I had never done, and being able to conquer my fears and limits made me believe that I could shoot for anything. New Urban Arts made me want to continuously learn from others…. The Summer Art Inquiry made me realize that I did not want to be someone afraid to take risks.
We need your help to give more students a chance to spend their summer finding their ambitions and conquering their fears. Please support our summer programs.
PS Please give before our fiscal year ends on Wednesday at bit.ly/NUA-Give. Your gift is critical at this time of year.
PPS. Consider becoming a sustaining donor to support us every month at j.mp/SustainNUA.