Students Benefit from Marist College’s
Liberty Partnership Program

The Liberty Partnership Program of Marist College (LPP), provided the opportunity for Kingston High School (KHS) students to experience life in college and learn leadership skills through its summer program, Experience Marist.  The event focused on leadership skills and college life.

In order to achieve the event’s goals, the Marist staff and the community leaders organized a two-day and one-night event that included workshops and recreation. For example, the Career Office presented How to Build a Resume and Work through Community Service Workshop. Marist athletes met with the students and explained how important is to have an education.  The Science Department presented a class in Hematology and the Informational Technology team provided a workshop on computer skills that are useful in school and on the job. Finally the LPP students and their families got the opportunity to speak with representatives of the Admissions’ Office where they learned about the process of applying to college. The Marist staff and students have been a key element to the LPP’s team and serve as tutors, interns and volunteers.

As the director of the LPP, Ms. Susan Repko stated about the Marist Experience, “ What’s wonderful about this experience is that it gives them a chance to see what is like living on campus and it gives them inside tips about applying to college.”

Other services offered to Kingston High School include LPP’s Teaching Strand that is designed to help them consider teaching as a career path. A special conference for Marist parents will be held in November. Another service is the LPP’s Career Academy that will include career fair, workshops on the soft skills needed on the job, and worksite visits. Also, Transition to High School, is a special event for 9th graders that will be held at Marist on September 30th.

The LPP is a dropout prevention program that serves over 200 students per year in grades 8 through 12 in Kingston and Poughkeepsie. It funded through the NYS Education Department has been sponsored by Marist College and for 20 years.  The program provides after-school session, tutoring, counseling, college tours, mentoring, cultural enrichment, field trips, and summer programs. In Kingston the LPP provides services through partnerships with the Kingston City School District, the Boys and Girls Club of Kingston, Ulster County Office of Employment and Training, and Key Bank. Since 2004 Key Bank has awarded $22,000 in college scholarships to LPP students.

All of the 11 LPP graduates in 2010 will all be attending college this fall. Two of these students have been awarded a scholarship from Key Bank. Sade Grant and Adam Rivera, who have been active in the LPP program for three years, will be attending SUNY Canton, Canton, NY and SUNY Ulster, Stone Ridge, NY respectively. Key Bank has given the students the personal satisfaction and pride that someone gets from winning a scholarship. Something the LPP students do not get every day.

Marist and LPP partners have been a key to the success of the LPP program. Marist has given the students the opportunity to have realistic picture of what college is like.