Medgar Evers Awarded $2.7 Million

More good news for Medgar Evers College (MEC) as the New York City Department of Youth and Community Development (DYCD) awards the institution close to $3 million to provide much-needed support in four area housing developments.  The $2.7 million contract, awarded to the School of Professional and Community Development, will fund services in four community centers over an 18-month period, providing a wealth of enrichment for both youth and adults.  The move is part of a transition of community centers currently operated by the New York City Housing Authority into the portfolio of the DYCD Cornerstone Initiative.  Across the five boroughs, 45 community centers will be transitioned to DYCD, which will begin operation in January 2014.

The Cornerstone community centers provide youth, ages 5 through 21, academic enrichment, homework help, access to recreational activities and computers, arts and crafts services and much more.  The centers benefit adults in the developments by providing workforce skills, including resume writing, interviewing techniques and job exploration strategies.  Tenants are exposed to cultural, community and civic engagement activities and offered General Equivalency Diploma (GED) and English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) instruction.  The Cornerstone Initiative will be modeled after the DYCD Beacon Center, of which Medgar Evers College has over twenty years of experience.  Since the College started its first site in 1992, the number of sites has grown to four.

“These centers will provide a tremendous boost for this community.  Many of our students come to us in need of academic enrichment and we know that doesn’t have to be the case.  Providing services that will help better prepare them before they even leave elementary school will do a great deal to improve their chances for later academic success,” stated Medgar Evers College President Rudolph F. Crew.  “The supports that will be available to parents and other adults in these centers will help create a more positive atmosphere for everyone in the community.”

The four housing developments that will receive funding for Cornerstone centers are:

Housing Development


Seth Low Houses

137 Belmont Avenue


630 Mother Gaston Boulevard

Unity Plaza (Sites 4-27)

576 Blake Avenue

Van Dyke I

392 Blake Avenue


The centers will be open Monday through Friday from 2pm to 10pm and on Saturdays from 9am to 5pm.  Beginning July, 2014, the centers will be open Monday through Friday from 8am to 6pm.

In the coming weeks, MEC will hire approximately 80 individuals to fill an array of full and part time positions to staff the centers to ensure that they will be ready to open by January, 2014.  Staff will include current MEC staff and several positions will be filled by community members, providing an economic boost to the neighborhoods as well.  Recruitment will begin next month.

MEC will begin the process of applying for funds to renew the contract in the spring of 2015.

For More Information:
Shana Kemp


About Medgar Evers College

Located in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, Medgar Evers College is a growing institution offering both Associate and Baccalaureate degrees.  The nearly 7,000-member student body is primarily comprised of those who are the first in their families to attend college.  A senior college within The City University of New York (CUNY) system, Medgar Evers College was established in 1970 with a mandate to meet the educational and social needs of the Central Brooklyn community.  With a commitment to students who desire a sound academic foundation as well as an opportunity for personal development, Medgar Evers College seeks to provide high-quality, professional, career-oriented undergraduate degree programs in the context of a liberal arts education.  For more information, visit