Marist Receives Renewed Funding to Continue Liberty Partnerships Program

Anthony Proia, Director of Media Relations

October 6, 2022 – Marist College has received renewed funding to continue its work with Poughkeepsie City School District students through its Liberty Partnerships Program (LPP). The grant, from the State Education Department (SED), allows Marist to remain working with youth in the area, as it has for more than 30 years. This round of state grant funding covers the cost of the program for the next five years, and will serve 360 students annually, ranging from grades 5 to 12.

Marist LPP began in 1990 with a mission to provide services to City of Poughkeepsie students to meet their academic, social, emotional, and career needs. As part of the program, Marist provides leadership and resources including use of its facilities and access to faculty and students. The goals of the program are to prepare students to successfully graduate from high school, handle the rigors of college and then be competitive in the workforce. 

“This program has allowed Marist to offer valuable services to City of Poughkeepsie students for more than thirty years and we are thrilled to see it continue,” said Deborah DiCaprio, Vice President and Dean for Student Affairs at Marist. “Marist students continue to flock toward participating in the Liberty Partnerships Program as a way to give back our community while gaining valuable experience working with youth.”

More than 30 current Marist students are working in the LPP program as interns, tutors and mentors. The majority of Marist students in the program are Education, Social Work, and Psychology majors, though, students from other majors are involved as well.

“As an education major, Marist LPP is an amazing opportunity for me to gain experience working with students in a unique setting,” said Mackenzie Goode ’23. “After-school programs are very impactful and I have seen it first hand with Marist LPP. I am fortunate to be able to work with LPP again as a tutor/mentor for my first Master’s class in the 5-year program with Dr. Gathers. I’m looking forward to returning and I encourage my fellow Marist classmates to participate!”

“I am excited that Marist Liberty Partnership will continue to provide rich learning and enrichment opportunities for our most vulnerable students,” said Natasha Cherry, Executive Director of Community Schools for the Poughkeepsie City School District. “This program not only gets our students college and career ready it provides them with real world experiences that many would not otherwise have access to.”

Various student-led organizations dedicate their time within Marist LPP to provide social and emotional workshops. The organizations include the Student Government Association, Black Student Union, Appreciating Races Creating Opportunities, Agents of Social Change, Sigma Sigma Sigma National Sorority, and Tau Beta Sigma National Band Sorority.

The program also features partnerships from community-based organizations, which have historically provided workshops, discounted meals, fundraising opportunities, and scholarships.

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