Friday, June 27, 2008
This is the creed that the young men of Urban Prep, Chicago's first public charter academy for all men, recite together every morning before going off to class. The school was founded in 2002 in response to alarming realities and statistics concerning the state of young black men. Only 1 in 40 black males will finish college, and 50 percent will drop out of high school (CNN). If that wasn't enough, Chicago youth are facing gang and gun violence on a regular basis. Almost 30 Chicago Public School students have been killed by gun violence this year alone. Thus, Urban Prep's mission is to: "produce responsible, nonviolent, college-bound men"(CNN).
"Against all odds: School offers hope, opportunity for young men," is the title of the recent story done by CNN on the school. You can click here to view it.
Urban Prep is located in Englewood, one of Chicago's most violent neighborhoods. Not only did my husband and I attend high school there, but it is where my husband grew up. There has always been alot of talk about how terrible the area has become. Nevertheless, It’s more than refreshing to see people who are now doing more than just talking about the problems, but actually doing something to solve them.
My hubby has served as Urban Prep's Director of College and Community Partnerships since the fall of 2006 (I know...handsome and noble. I told you I had myself a keeper!). Consequently, I have had the pleasure of meeting and getting to know some of the young men. In addition, I have gotten a chance to witness first hand the way the faculty and staff at Urban Prep genuinely care about the young men. They go above and beyond the call of duty to make sure these young men succeed. I'm sure I am not alone in being proud of the work this school is doing! Go Urban Prep!
Do you believe? Feel free to share your thoughts and opinions in the comments section.