Program  Prepares High School Students for Transition to College or a Chosen Career Path

Brooklyn, NY – Medgar Evers College announced that the New York State Education Department (NYSED) recently awarded the College a $350K grant in support of the College’s Liberty Partnerships Program, one of its longest-running youth serving programs. The Liberty Partnerships Program is a statewide initiative created by legislators to address New York State’s high dropout rate among high school students.  Now in its twenty-third year, MEDGAR (Motivating Empowering Developing Greater Academic Responsibility) LPP will use this grant to continue supporting at-risk youth by preparing them for successful transition into post-secondary education or an introduction to a career path.

“This is a great opportunity for us to further engage students in the Liberty Partnerships Program,” said Medgar Evers College President Dr. William L. Pollard.  “This grant, obtained by the School of Professional & Community Development, will allow us to continue serving 280 students each year over the next five years, helping them to be better prepared to transition from high school to college, or to pursue a chosen career path.  Collaborations with partners like the New York State Education Department help us to focus on the specific needs of students while providing additional supports along the way and we are grateful for their support.”

The grant will allow the MEC LPP to provide activities and services that include, but not are limited to tutorials, homework assistance, Regents and SAT prep, counseling, college tours, and self-empowerment workshops for both parents and students. Among the major objectives of the continuation of the LPP are the design, development, implementation, and evaluation of mentoring, parent engagement, and comprehensive academic and support services; the implementation and evaluation of customized individual academic and career development plans for students, using proven successful dropout prevention.

The Liberty Partnerships Program helps us to meet the students where they are,” said Interim Provost & Senior Vice President Dr. Karrin E. Wilks. “This grant will help us to increase the number of students we currently serve with a well-balanced program consisting of academic support and college and career counseling, as well as other services. By providing appropriate interventions, students are empowered to graduate from high school prepared to enter postsecondary education as highly competitive young adults.”

The Liberty Partnerships Program employs a comprehensive, approach towards servicing the student population, providing them and their families with effective interventions, encouragement and opportunities. The LPP at Medgar Evers College was established in 1989, and is managed by the School of Professional & Community Development.

“Understanding why students drop out of school is one of the first steps to helping them identify their challenges and obstacles,” said SPCD Dean Dr. Simone Rodriguez-Dorestant. “The LPP here at Medgar works closely with our partner schools to identify those at-risk students in a timely manner so we can get them into the pipeline early enough to address and help curb the behaviors that contribute to their dropping out.”

“Parental involvement is a critical part of the program’s success,” said Program Director Lisa Superville Jones. “Parents are essential and important partners in the Liberty Partnerships Program, and are are encouraged to play a more significant role in their children’s education by participating in workshops, guest lectures, parent support groups, trips and special presentations so that they remain engaged in their children’s success.”

About the Liberty Partnerships Program

The Liberty Partnerships Program was established by Governor Cuomo in 1988 to ensure that students who are at risk of dropping out of school achieve academic and personal excellence, graduate from high school and enter post-secondary education or the workforce as highly competent young adults. MEC LPP identifies these students through any number of predictors, which are not limited to academic failure. Some other factors include truancy, disciplinary issue, teen parenting, substance abuse or negative peer pressure. LPP’s mission is to develop and implement systemic and supportive intervention for these students such as skills assessment, tutoring, academic, family and personal counseling, and special course work and enrichment activities.

MEC LPP works with eligible students attending one of their three partner schools: W.E.B. Dubois Academy and Clara Barton High School (school day and campus-based programming) and Intermediate School 323 (after-school programming).


Dawn S. Walker (Communications)   (718) 530-4539

Lisa Superville Jones (MEC LLP)       (718) 804-8853