Program inspires youth to make post secondary education a goal
Brock University volunteers visited Peace Bridge Public School last Wednesday to lead students in Grades 6 to 8 in games. The purpose of the visit was to introduce students to the univerity's Youth University afterschool program. Each week until April, students will enjoy education activities that will inspire and help them learn about future career goals and study opportunities at a post secondary institution once they complete high school.
An afterschool program aims to inspire youth to aspire to receive a post-secondary education.
Brock University’s Youth University program will see student volunteers mentor youth in Grades 6 to 8 at Peace Bridge Public School, said program manager Greg Zwiep. Mentoring is also offered to high school students in Grade 10 and under. The mentoring occurs in conjunction with a program designed to raise awareness about post-secondary education options, support readiness and assist with financial literacy.
Brock University volunteers will visit Peace Bridge Public School once a week every Wednesday afternoon until April.
Each week, students will receive tutoring and hands-on activities that will help youth connect their interests with future careers.
“We’ll do lots of fun activities and the focus is to find what they (the students) are interested in,” Zwiep said.
The program runs from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. and is funded through a $3,500 grant provided by the United Way of Niagara Falls and Greater Fort Erie. The funds will be used to supply food for youth involved in the program as well as weekly transportation to the schools for student mentors. Return transportation for Peace Bridge Public School students will be provided by Dunn The Mover.
In terms of community members receiving a post-secondary education, Zwiep said the Niagara region is “10% lower than the rest of Ontario.”
The program is now in its fourth year and was provided to students at Fort Erie Elementary School until it closed last year. Zwiep said the Youth University program wanted to “stay connected” with Fort Erie students.
Peace Bridge Public School is currently the only school in the Niagara region that hosts the program, Zwiep said.
“We try to bring information and educate people about funding opportunities and we talk to high school graduates. Our goal is to let people out there know that there is funding available for a post-secondary education and it is attainable,” Zwiep said.
Youth University also offers a number of enrichment camps for youth during March Break and the Summer months.
For more information about Youth University visit online at www.brocku.ca/youth-university.