Graphing Calculators to be Donated at Street Squash in NYC on March 1st
Online PR News – 18-February-2012 – – CONTACT: Dawn Dankner-Rosen/Ilana Arazie
DDR Public Relations
(914) 747-2500 office/914) 420-8219 cell
New York, NY - Twenty-two 16-year-old Harlem students, dressed in their blue and white school uniforms, peer out the window of their classroom to see a squash game in progress. They’re focused not just on seeing who will become the winner of today’s squash match. They have a much more serious goal in mind. These students are intent on mastering the game of getting into college. This unique study session is actually a new fundraising event called the GIFT SAT Study-A-Thon, sponsored by the nonprofit Graph It Forward Today (GIFT). GIFT launched its new program last week at Street Squash, a Harlem-based enrichment program/center. By hosting an event that combines the game of squash with academics, Street Squash and Graph It Forward Today have teamed up to help prepare students for the SAT exams in March, May and June. The GIFT SAT Study-A-Thon at Street Squash kicked off what will become a nationwide effort to take place in schools and communities throughout the country starting now thru June. The program is designed to motivate students to raise money for graphing calculators, which retail for about $100 and may be out-of-budget for low income students. On the SAT, graphing calculators are used to increase speed and accuracy, and they help the student with higher level math computations.
Graph It Forward Today (GIFT), a new nonprofit founded by a renowned test prep expert and author with her team of volunteers, also known as “SAT Angels” -- is working to clear the way for all high school students to have equal access to the tools and prep needed to take the SAT/ACT exams and to gain admission to college. Recent statistics show that students from lower socioeconomic classes have lower scores on the SAT than do students from higher income levels. GIFT was formed to “level the playing field for all college applicants” by providing supplies and services to high school students who otherwise wouldn’t be able to afford them and by creating fundraising programs like the GIFT SAT Study-A-Thon. The goal for students receiving the full “GIFT Package” of a graphing calculator paired with test prep services provided by WilsonDailyPrep is for their initial scores to increase by 230 points. Here's how the GIFT SAT Study-A-Thon program works: students reach out to teachers, relatives and friends to raise a minimum of $25 towards purchasing graphing calculators. Many organizations like Street Squash will also support fundraising efforts by reaching out to their donors. In return, students pledge to study for their SAT/ACT exam with prep services donated by the test prep company Wilson Prep, and specifically their online test prep service, wilsondailyprep.com that can be done from the convenience of the student’s home. Students are then asked to watch a test prep video, complete four test prep worksheets, utilize exercises and lessons from the book Write the SAT Essay Right, and then take a full SAT or ACT exam. Students of all income levels can participate in a Study-A-Thon by going on GIFT’s website. Says Nina Auerbach, Program Director at GIFT: “Students in our GIFT SAT Study-A-Thon program are inspired to practice and review for their own SAT exam while raising funds so that others will also have access to essential SAT exam tools and prep. This program not only educates students but also provides invaluable community service, teaching students how to help themselves as well as help others.”
During the GIFT SAT Study-A-Thon event at Street Squash, Nina asked each of the students to write down their goals. Here’s what one student wrote, "My name is Ramsey. I am a very energetic and eclectic person who has an open mind to many things. I love animals and computers. In the future I hope to become a computer engineer and the graphing calculator that I’m raising money for will change my future by giving me greater access to the SAT, as well as upcoming college courses.” On Thursday, March 1st at 5pm, Nina will return to the Street Squash classroom with a graphing calculator in hand for Ramsey and 21 other students. There will be much cheering, and a lot of hugs and hope. And, surely, there will also be a sense of relief that every student there will now have an equal chance of scoring high on this critical test. Let the SATs now begin!
About Graph It Forward Today (GIFT) GIFT was founded in October, 2010 and granted 501 (c) status in January, 2011 to create educational opportunities for high school students nationwide by providing essential academic tools for students limited not by ability, but by means. GIFT donates online and onsite college test prep services with personal support, graphing calculators and gently used test prep books (“The GIFT Package”). GIFT is affiliated with other nonprofit organizations and school districts that serve disadvantaged students including Let’s Get Ready, United Way NYC, United Way Boston, La Sociedad Latina, West End House, Dorchester Federated, Breakthrough Cambridge, Steppingstone Foundation, Kipp Charter School, Street Squash, Take Stock In Children, Reach Prep, Yonkers Public Schools and Harlem High School. All funds donated to GIFT will be used for the cost of test prep services, calculators and batteries, etc. All test prep services are donated in full by WilsonDailyPrep.com and many of GIFT’s operating costs are being donated by Laura Wilson, founder of GIFT. For more information, please call 1-800-888-0692, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.graphitforward.org.