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State Education Department Announces Third Class of My Brother’s Keeper Fellows
The State Education Department today named the third class of My Brother’s Keeper (MBK) Fellows who have been identified as leaders in their MBK Communities and who will be provided with mentor relationship opportunities in government, education and business. The 71 Fellows, all high school juniors, represent 24 New York State school districts. My Brother's Keeper (MBK) fellows from the Newburgh Enlarged City School District include:
Steven Acosta, Newburgh Free Academy Main Campus
Kweku Antwi-Obeng, Newburgh Free Academy North Campus
James Brantly, Newburgh Free Academy West Campus
Julien Johnson, Newburgh Free Academy P-TECH
“This year’s class of My Brother’s Keeper Fellows are joining the program during a significant time in our country’s history,” said Board of Regents Chancellor Betty A. Rosa. “The COVID-19 pandemic has revealed the inequities that run throughout our education system. The Board of Regents and I are committed to ensuring that all children have access to high-quality learning opportunities and each of these young men will come away from the program with a unique perspective and the leadership skills to help address these issues head on.”
“I am proud to welcome the 2020 MBK Fellows, they join a remarkable group of young men that are learning to inspire change in their communities,” said Interim Commissioner Shannon Tahoe. “I thank Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie and his colleagues for their continued support of New York’s MBK Program and their commitment to advancing measures that create opportunities for success for all New Yorkers.”
“At no time in recent history has the mission of the My Brother’s Keeper Program been more significant, as people nationwide are demanding a response to anti Black racism,” Through MBK, we are removing barriers to opportunities and empowering young people to affect change in their communities,” Regent Lester W. Young said. “Education can play a substantial role in combatting the systemic racism throughout our society, which is why we will continue to grow this program and create a generation of leaders prepared for civic duty and a strong commitment to social justice.”
“New York’s MBK program continues to inspire young men of color to reach their greatest potential,” said NYS Assembly Speaker Carl E. Heastie. “This program strives to change the plight of young black men, giving them an opportunity to progress through mentorship as well as focused programming. During a time in our country where we are witnessing firsthand the impact of racial injustices and systemic racism, The My Brother’s Keeper initiative is needed now more than ever. Congratulations to the newest cohort of MBK fellows.”
Each Fellow will be partnered with a mentor from a NYSMBK Community Network partner and be given the opportunity of a fellowship with one of our partners. They will also be required to develop and execute a service project related to a NYSMBK initiative such as:
- Ensuring equitable access to high-quality schools and programs;
- Expanding prevention, early warning and intervention services;
- Responding to structural and institutional racism; or
- Engaging families and communities in a trusted and respectful way.
In addition, Fellows will serve on a statewide MBK Fellows Workgroup to provide valuable input on the development and implementation of a statewide MBK Mentoring Network.
2020 Fellows have had the opportunity to participate in the Stand and Deliver Retreat, The Village Meeting: “Needs, Deeds, and Impact during COVID-19” and a virtual Induction: “MBK Fellows Advice to Action.” Additionally, each 2020 Fellow and mentor participated via conference call in a virtual mastermind study on the book Madd Truth by Dr. Alphonso Wyatt with Dr. Don Applyrs, Director of Family and Community Engagement.
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