At the Harvard Club of New York City on December 20, CFES President and CEO Rick Dalton announced the launch of an official CFES alumni association that will connect CFES graduates with current CFES Scholars as mentors and role models.
CFES TO LAUNCH ALUMNI NETWORK
At the Harvard Club of New York City on December 20, CFES President and CEO Rick Dalton announced the launch of an official CFES alumni association that will connect CFES graduates with current CFES Scholars as mentors and role models. With a scheduled launch in the summer of 2018, the network will also assist young alumni in “degree completion and provide strategic support to help former Scholars access jobs and careers,” said Dalton.
In addition to New York City CFES alumni, the Harvard Club gathering also included members of the CFES Board of Directors, CFES Program Directors, and the CFES NYC Advisory Board.
“We are so proud of you, our young alumni,” said Dalton. “Each of your stories is an inspiration to our current scholars.”
Alumni in attendance included Shadey Trinidad, a graduate of Richard R. Green High School in Manhattan who acknowledges that when she entered the CFES program, she and her parents “did not have the awareness or the resources to make college possible.” Today, she is a New York City teacher with a bachelor’s degree from Colby College and a master’s from Hunter College.
Gerson Lanza entered CFES program at Wadleigh Secondary School in Harlem barely speaking English. Today he is a professional dancer on Broadway with a degree from Wake Forest University.
Jeremiah Sieunarine graduated from Pelham Preparatory Academy in the Bronx, but he never expected that he would return, with a degree from the University of Vermont, to lead Pelham’s CFES program.
Shadey, Gerson, Jeremiah, and the other alumni heard from Justin Chukumba, a Yale graduate and manager at Alphasights who leads the NYC Advisory Board. The Advisory Board is a group of young professionals that has provided support to CFES Scholars in New York City since its formation a year ago. It consists of 18 young professionals who participate and enlist their peers in supporting CFES Scholars across the 14 NYC CFES schools through mentoring, leadership workshops, and job shadowing experiences.
Chukumba encouraged the CFES alumni to stay connected to CFES. “We want all of you to get involved with CFES – you have so much to give to students who are in the position that you were once in yourself,” Chukumba said.
Dalton concluded the Harvard Club event by turning to Shadey, Gerson, Jeremiah, and the other CFES alumni to recognize their success at turning obstacles into opportunities.
“CFES has helped over 100,000 students attend college over the past 20 years. We want to help another 100,000 students go to college over the next six years, but it’s a team effort. All of you are on this team with us, and your perseverance, passion, and optimism that helped you achieve your goals will help future CFES Scholars achieve theirs too,” said Dalton.