The YMCA Achievers Program is gearing up for the 2016-2017 school year. An Achievers Open House for returning students and new recruits is being held on Sept. 28 from 7:00-8:30 pm at the Westfield Area YMCA, 220 Clark Street in Westfield. Parents and teens are invited to attend and learn more about the program. Registration will be available during the course of the evening. Minority career professionals are invited to serve as role models and make a positive impact in the lives of our youth.
 
This program is open to all minority teens (9th-12th Grade) from all social and academic levels within Union County. The goal is to inspire them to become leaders in their community and achieve academic excellence by providing tools and activities that prepare them for life.
 
For the first year the program is being offered collaboratively by three YMCAs:  the Westfield Area YMCA, 220 Clark Street in Westfield; the Plainfield YMCA, 518 Watchung Avenue in Plainfield; and the Fanwood/Scotch Plains YMCA, 1340 Martine Avenue in Scotch Plains. 
 
 
To participate, teens must complete an application form and be committed to attend and participate in workshops and events. There is no minimum GPA requirement and the program, including SAT Prep and materials, is free of cost. Participating high school seniors are eligible to apply for college scholarships.  The year-long program follows the academic school year and is offered on a six-week rotation.
 
The Achievers Program began at the Harlem YMCA in 1968 as a conduit to helping minority youth develop life skills and educational goals. The Westfield Area Y began offering the program in 1998 and expanded its partnership with the Plainfield Y in 2015. The program will now include the Fanwood/Scotch Plains Y. Together an effort will be made to boost academic achievement and career success for minority and underserved youth, creating confident youth and stronger communities.
 
For more information, contact Nadya Lawrence, Achievers Coordinator at (908) 518-2512 x412, email: nlawrence@westfieldynj.org or Janice A. Carthens, Sr. Director Member Services at (908) 233-2700 x227, email: jcarthens@westfieldynj.org.