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HSBC Connects George Westinghouse CTE High School Students to the Professional World

George Westinghouse CTE High School interns and their supervisors at
the Internship Program's fall Closing Ceremony

HSBC has been an integral F+O partner since 2007, when together we launched a 15-student internship program with George Westinghouse CTE High School in downtown Brooklyn. Thanks to the strength of the partnership, the tremendous depth of HSBC’s commitment to New York’s youth, and the dedication and efforts of the George Westinghouse interns through the years, this program has grown to serve 40 students each year!

One such student is Analis Salcedo, a senior at George Westinghouse CTE High School, and a veteran of multiple F+O programs over the past year. She first interned through the HSBC-funded program last spring at the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, where she researched arts groups and provided general administrative support to the organization. The following summer, she applied her skills in vision care technology while interning at Cohen’s Fashion Optical, learning the ins and outs of effective customer service.

Hoping to ultimately pursue a career in social work and eager to explore related opportunities, Analis applied to the HSBC program again this fall. As an intern, she assisted Girls Inc. with their Project Glow middle school programming, taking full advantage of her time there and the opportunity to learn. “I observed the people around me, my supervisor and co-workers," Analis said. "I observed the way they interacted with the girls, which is something I would have to do as a social worker.”

Reflecting back on her internship experiences, Analis is grateful to have had the opportunity to hone her professional skills. “One thing I have learned the most in order to be successful in a professional environment is communication skills," Analis said. "I've had three internships this past year with Futures and Options, and all three were very different. However, from all of them, I’ve improved my communication skills and I’ve learned to interact with different people, whether it is in a business office, with customers at an optical store, or teachers and students at an afterschool program. [These skills will] stay with me for my future career as a social worker.”

HSBC makes it possible every year for students like Analis to learn more about the work world and about themselves as professionals. We appreciate their tremendous support of the young people at George Westinghouse CTE High School!

F+O Alumni Step Up as Mentors in our College Success Program

F+O college freshmen meet their mentors at the College Success Program's opening event

Thanks to a grant from Sprint Foundation, F+O launched its pilot College Success Program this year, which aims to support our young men and women during their first year in college. In the program’s inaugural year, 14 college freshmen are participating in the program. The college freshmen are matched with upperclassmen or young professional mentors, and we are delighted to report that 10 of our 14 mentors are F+O alumni themselves! 

The students and mentors met at the kickoff event on January 8, where they had a chance to get to know each other and develop networking strategies. Mentors helped the students write their own elevator pitches, which one mentor commented was a great way to learn how her mentee currently defines herself. Throughout the spring semester, the student-mentor pairs will be in touch on a bi-weekly basis to discuss topics such as choosing college courses, selecting a major and looking for summer job opportunities. The students and their mentors will get together for three additional sessions this spring, including a work-readiness workshop, a career exploration field trip and a closing ceremony. With help from their mentors, we hope our students will successfully complete their first year of college and be ready to get a strong start in their sophomore year.

Our students and alumni feel that they benefit immensely from their mentors’ guidance. In turn, the mentors are committed to fostering the development of the next generation of young professionals. Weeks Mensah, who is an F+O alumnus and is serving as a mentor in the College Success Program, commented, “F+O paired me with a mentor when I was a sophomore in high school. To date, this person is still my mentor and a close friend.”

For more information about participating in a mentor program, or other ways to volunteer with Futures and Options, please contact Janay Daniel at 212-601-0002 or jdaniel@futuresandoptions.org


Get Your Tickets to A Toast To Brighter Futures

Our 5th Annual A Toast To Brighter Futures will be held on April 28 at SPiN NY. A Toast To Brighter Futures benefits the Dream Big Scholarship Fund, which supports the college education of exemplary Futures and Options high school seniors who plan to attend college in fall 2015.

Online tickets are $30 each and $20 for F+O alumni. At the door, all tickets will be $40. Ping Pong Team Tournament entry is an additional $60 for a team of 2-4 people. To purchase tickets and sign up for the F+O Ping Pong Tournament, please click here. If you have questions or want more information, please contact Cara Flynn at 212-601-0002.

Join Futures and Options' Alumni & Young Professionals Committee

Futures and Options’ Alumni and Young Professionals Committee is recruiting members! F+O alumni and young professionals who want to help their peers and F+O’s current students through networking and professional development events are welcome to join our team. Please contact Christopher Ellis at cellis@futuresandoptions.org, if you want to join the Committee or would like more details. 

F+O Gets Ready to Volunteer with Habitat for Humanity in April

Habitat for Humanity participants and staff on the ramp that they
built during F+O's 2013 trip

This April, Futures and Options will be leading our third annual Habitat for Humanity spring break trip. Fifteen F+O students will head to Exmore, Virginia to support Habitat’s mission of creating decent, safe and affordable housing. In addition to the volunteer work itself, students will engage in workshops on volunteerism and discuss how to continue serving their communities. The students not only commit to volunteering, they also raise the money needed to pay for the trip.  If you would like to support them, please donate online by clicking here.

Also, on March 13, we will be holding a happy hour at Van Diemens Café & Bar to raise money to support F+O’s Habitat trip. The $10 admission goes straight to support our trip and gets you a free drink with the following deals: $4 select drafts, $5 import drafts and $5 mixed drinks from 6:00 to 9:00. If you have any questions, please contact Rebecca Dougherty at rdougherty@futuresandoptions.org.

Futures and Options Welcomes Program Coordinator Corey Ogilby

Corey Ogilby joined the F+O team in February 2014 as one of our program coordinators. Before Futures and Options, Corey worked at Success Academy Charter School in Harlem as a second grade teacher, gaining valuable experience teaching New York City youth. Corey received her Bachelor's degree in government from Connecticut College in 2012, and her Master's degree in general education and special education from Touro College in 2013.

As a government major, Corey specialized in education policy, its relationship to social issues and its effect on families and children. Throughout her time at Connecticut College, she expanded upon her studies by interning for U.S. Congresswoman Chellie Pingree and Maine House of Representatives Majority Whip, Seth Berry, as well as numerous other politicians and political organizations. Additionally, during the fall of her junior year at Connecticut College, Corey studied abroad in Cairo, Egypt where she gained a deeper understanding of the cultural, economic and political factors at play globally.

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to Futures and Options

You can now support Futures and Options when you buy items from Amazon! Simply visit https://smile.amazon.com/, log into your Amazon account and type “Futures and Options” into the search bar. After selecting Futures and Options, Amazon will now donate 0.5% of the price of your eligible AmazonSmile purchases to Futures and Options.


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