Parents & Students

Overview

PARTNERING WITH STUDENTS TO REACH THEIR HIGHEST POTENTIAL

Student Sponsor Partners (SSP) provides tuition support to eligible low-income students to attend a college preparatory, non-public high school in New York City. Our uniquely integrated approach provides every student with a sponsor who provides financial support for tuition and a mentor who provides one-to-one guidance and motivation to ensure that their student graduates high school and achieves post secondary success.

SSP Partner Schools
Currently, SSP has over 1000 students attending 23 parochial partner schools in Manhattan, Bronx, Queens and Brooklyn, New York. Click here to find the closest SSP School in your neighborhood.

Student Application

Thank you for your interest in SSP. Each year we accept about 300 qualified students to our program. To qualify and apply to the SSP Program click the Student Application button below. Please note: No paper applications will be accepted.

STUDENT APPLICATION

You can also access the application directly at www.mytads.com/fa/ssp. You will be asked to create a login and password.

Need Assistance?
If you have any questions or need help with the application process, please call 1-800-884-8237 between the hours of 8am – 8pm, Monday – Friday. Spanish-speaking customer service is available.

Important FAQ’s

Who is eligible to apply to Student Sponsor Partners?

  • Students currently enrolled in the eighth grade.
  • Most students who are accepted are presently attending public or charter middle schools. Limited seats are available for Catholic school students already receiving a scholarship for middle school.
  • Students who come from low-income families. In order to qualify financially, a family should have an annual income of $10,000 or less per person in the household each year. For example, a qualified family of four would have an annual income of about $40,000.
  • Students of all backgrounds; SSP does not discriminate on the basis of religion, race, sexual orientation or national origin.
  • Students from families who are willing to contribute a small portion of the tuition costs: around $800 to $900 per year in addition to school fees.

Can I apply to SSP if I am not in the 8th grade?


No. SSP only accepts applicants currently enrolled in the eighth grade and are planning to start the ninth grade in the fall.

What are Student Sponsor Partners’ financial guidelines?


SSP gives priority to students from low-income families; paying tuition must be impossible without financial assistance. SSP reserves the right to review finances on a yearly basis. In order to qualify financially, a family should have an income of $10,000 or less per person in the household each year. For example, a family of four should have an annual income of about $40,000.

Do I need to have excellent grades to apply to SSP?


No. SSP accepts students with average to below average grades. In order to qualify, students must have a minimum GPA of 70 and a maximum GPA of 85. We accept students who would not test into public magnet schools and who would not qualify for merit-based scholarships.

Where do SSP students attend high school?


SSP students attend 23 quality, non-public high schools in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens and the Bronx. A list of our partner schools can be found here. SSP does not offer financial assistance to students attending schools outside this list.

Is SSP a Catholic organization?


No. Each of our partner schools has a long history of successfully educating low-income youths in a nurturing school community. Although most of them are Catholic schools, SSP is not a religious organization, and students are not asked about their religious affiliations. Our partner schools provide a quality education at the most affordable cost.

What are the financial expectations of the families of SSP students?

SSP sponsors cover the majority of SSP student tuition. Students’ families are expected to contribute a small portion of the tuition costs, between $800 to $900 per year. In addition, families may be required to pay various fees such as registration fees, books and uniforms. Families are encouraged to set up monthly payment plans with the schools to make these costs more manageable over the course of the school year.

How do I apply to SSP?


To apply to SSP you must fill out the Student Application here. Please familiarize yourself with the application requirements before completing the application.

When is the application due?


There is no specific due date for the SSP Student Application. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis, and we will close the application once all of the spots for the 2016-2017 school year are full. Due to limited seats available each year, we encourage you to apply as early as possible.

Do I need to take the TACHS exam to apply to SSP?


No, but students who apply to SSP are strongly recommended to take the TACHS exam. To register for the TACHS exam, please visit www.tachsinfo.com. Students accepted to a school through the TACHS exam are not guaranteed an SSP placement. If a student did not take the TACHS exam, and is considered acceptance for the SSP program, their prospective high school will administer a comparable exam at a later date.

I really want to attend a particular SSP partner school. If I am accepted, can I go to whichever school I want?


SSP applicants are given the opportunity to list their top three schools in order of preference on their application. SSP students are not guaranteed acceptance into their first choice partner school.

Should I pay the school's registration fee if I have not yet been accepted to the SSP program

No. Students who have not yet received a decision on their acceptance to SSP should not register with a partner school unless they are prepared to pay full tuition at that school. Please note that most high school registration fees are non-refundable. Partner schools’ published registration deadlines can be disregarded by SSP applicants; registration dates for SSP students are different from those for the schools’ general student populations. If you have any questions on this matter, please call 212-986-9575 for assistance.

I have applied to SSP. When and how will I be notified whether I was accepted?


Once an eighth grade student applies, SSP determines whether the student is eligible for the program according to the financial and academic guidelines. If the student meets the requirements, SSP calls the student and a parent or guardian in for an interview. Following the interview, applicants will be notified of their status by June 30th of the year in which they apply. Notification of the final decisions will come through the mail.

Are students obligated to participate in SSP over the summer?


YES. All new SSP students must attend a one day SSP Orientation Session and the Summer Readiness Program at their respective schools during the summer before their ninth grade year. Attendance is mandatory for SSP’s Orientation Session and their new school’s Summer Readiness Program. If students fail to attend SSP Orientation or the Summer Readiness Program, their scholarship will be in jeopardy.

Once accepted, SSP will inform the student of their Orientation Session date. Additionally each school will determine the exact time and length of the Summer Readiness Program and will communicate that directly to the students and their families.

During the summers following ninth, tenth, eleventh and twelfth grade years, students who are failing classes or who have failed Regent’s Exams may be required to attend summer school in order to move onto the next grade (or to graduate). Students’ families are expected to cover any costs associated with summer school


Student Profiles

SSP Students are committed to reaching their highest potential. An SSP Student is focused, open-minded, engaged, and committed to their educational success.

SSP students are three times more likely to graduate from high school than their peers from similar backgrounds in New York City public schools. Each year over 95% of our graduates are accepted into college compared to around 50% of their peers.

Deniya
Class of 2017
“Because of SSP I am able to attend a great school and receive a good education. I am excelling in every way. SSP has provided me exposure to so many different things. I have learned how to play the tenor sax, how to African-dance, and now I am the captain of the African-dance team. SSP has also provided me with a college prep program that is helping me improve my SAT scores and helping me with the college application process. I have had so many opportunities through SSP that I am so grateful for.”
Edwin
Class of 2018
“Thank you SSP. By being able to attend a great high school, you have provided me with a safe-haven. I am getting a great education in a wonderfully supportive environment that I would not otherwise experience without the financial support of my sponsor. My mentor is giving me great advice regarding colleges. Thank you.”
DSC_0884-2
Alyssa
Class of 2018

“I am so grateful to be receiving this wonderful education. It’s a strong school in a great neighborhood with a very supportive community. I am in the honors program. I also really like my mentor, she is kind and supportive.”
DSC_1055-2
Jayson
Class of 2016
“My experience with SSP has been great! I have a great mentor who has taught me a lot. He also took me to my first basketball game at Madison Square Garden. I still remember the date; it was January 14, 2013. He has also exposed me to many other things as well. He has helped me with the college application process. Just knowing he believes in me feels great.”

SSP Student Resource Center

Hello SSP students!  We are so proud of each and everyone of you.

The SSP Student Resource Center will provide you with information and online resources to help guide you through your high school years.

HOW TO BE A SUCCESSFUL SSP STUDENT FAQ’S

SSP HANDBOOKS

The Student Handbook outlines:

  • SSP’s program, expectations, and policies
  • Action Steps to be a successful high school student

How to Be a Great Mentee Handbook  guides you through:

  • Benefits of having a mentor
  • Best ways to build a great relationship with your mentor
  • Do’s and Don’ts with interacting with your mentor

STUDY GUIDES TO HELP YOU BECOME A BETTER STUDENT

Online Resources:

Paper Resources:

  • SSP Roadmap
  • The 7 Effective Habits of Highly Effective Teens by Sean Covey – Amazon
  • The 6 Most Important Decisions You’ll Ever Make by Sean Covey – Amazon

I’ve been accepted to SSP. What are the expectations for students?

  • SSP students must follow all of the rules of their school, which include: attending school daily, getting to school on time, adhering to dress code, adhering to behavior code, respecting teachers, respecting peers, working hard in the classroom, completing all assignments on time and obtaining passing grades.
  • SSP students must be active in the mentor relationship. Students must meet with their mentor four to six times each year, and students must communicate with their mentor at least once a month via text, phone or email contact. Students should initiate contact with their mentor rather than waiting for them. If students are unresponsive to their mentor, their place in the SSP program could be put in jeopardy.
  • SSP students must communicate frequently with their sponsors to share their progress at school and their gratitude for the financial tuition support. Communications with sponsors will be coordinated by the SSP School Coordinator and/or the SSP Schools team.
  • SSP students must meet the academic requirements of their school and SSP. These requirements are explained at the SSP Orientation and at the school’s Summer Readiness Program.

My new school is very tough academically and very strict, how do I adjust?

  • Ask your teacher and peers for extra help in your most difficult class.
  • Find out what is the failing grade at your school.
  • Utilize the high school planners to write important assignments and exam dates.
  • Organize yourself for class with labeled notebooks and your daily planner to keep track of assignments.
  • Discover a note-taking style that works best for you. It helps when you consistently study your class notes at home.
  • Keep a record of how long it takes you to complete homework and study for exams for different classes so that you know how much time you need to schedule for those classes in the future.
  • Establish a regular time and place for studying.
  • Use flash cards or summary sheets to study.
  • Study with a buddy!
  • Study old exams and focus on questions answered wrong.
  • Be proactive: ask and answer questions in class, even if you’re unsure of the answer.

I am struggling academically in school. What should I do?


If you find that you are struggling academically, there are a number of resources at your disposal to help:

  • You can ask teachers for extra help. SSP partner schools have teachers who genuinely want their students to succeed, and they are willing to provide extra academic help.
  • You can attend free extra help sessions after school through extra tutoring or study groups
  • You can speak with the SSP School Coordinator and/or principal at the school.
  • It is important that you are proactive and seek out help. Help is always available. Feel free to contact the SSP School’s Team at studentsupport@sspnyc.org

Can I lose my scholarship during the four years in high school?


Yes. An SSP student must maintain good grades and behavior in school, as well as stay in consistent communication with their mentor. The student is at risk of losing the scholarship if any one of the three areas is not in good standing.

In order to keep an SSP Scholarship in good standing, all SSP students must:

  • Communicate with their mentor at least once a month either through phone call, text message, or email. Students should never communicate with mentors through social media.
  • Meet up and spend quality time with their mentor at least four times a year.
  • Maintain good behavior in school (avoid attendance issues, detention, suspensions, etc.).
  • Never fail 3 or more classes in any one semester.

If a school dismisses an SSP student for any reason, that student will lose his/her scholarship. There are no transfers with the SSP scholarship. Please refer to the SSP Student Handbook for more information and tips on how to keep your scholarship in good standing.

How will SSP support me in getting prepared to apply and go to college?


SSP offers a comprehensive College and Career program to prepare students for college and beyond. Starting on day one, we offer support, tools, and teach skills needed to complete each grade successfully as well as set goals for long-term success. Please see the SSP’s College and Career Program section below for specifics on our program offerings.

My Mentor is not being responsive to my texts, calls or emails? What should I do?

  • Notify your SSP School Coordinator immediately, if you are not able to contact your mentor.
  • Share, with your SSP School Coordinator, your last method of contact (text, phone, or in person), and when.
  • You can also reach out to your schools’ SSP Relationship Manager.
  • After SSP is informed, your SSP Relationship Manager will follow up with your mentor.

How do I properly thank my sponsor and mentor for their support?

  • Students are required to write thank you letters to their sponsors and mentors twice a year (during the holidays and the end of the school year).
  • Students can also keep their mentor up-to-date on their progress in school and thank them for their advice via text, email, or in-person.
  • After spending time with your mentor, always follow-up with a thank-you text or email.

Can I transfer to another SSP School?


The mission of SSP is to provide the best learning experience for each student. Your school will offer you a competitive education in a positive and supportive environment. SSP has a no transferring policy between schools for the four years of high school.

If my scholarship is suspended, how can I resume my scholarship?


If a student is placed on funding suspension based on poor academic performance (e.g. failing grades), they are putting their family in a financial bind. The student’s family/guardian will be expected to pay full cost of tuition  to keep the student in the school. If this happens, the student will have the next half-year (one full semester) to improve their grades. The student cannot have more than two failures in that next semester. If he/she does, the student’s funding will be permanently suspended and the student will be dismissed from the SSP program. If the student has two or fewer failures at the end of the semester, the full scholarship will be reinstated.

This is all contingent upon the family being able to pay the full tuition for a full semester. If the family cannot do so, the student will be dismissed from the school and will lose the scholarship permanently.


COLLEGE AND CAREER PROGRAM

Did you know:

  • Earning a college degree is the most powerful instrument of economic mobility for low-income Americans (NY Times).
  • Only 1 in 10 people from low income families will have a college degree by age 25 (Russell Sage Foundation).
  • The share of jobs that require a post-secondary education has doubled over the last 40 years (Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce).

Given the demand of the workplace for post- secondary education and training, SSP offers a College and Career Program supplementary to each high school program. We believe it is never too early to begin preparing for college and a career.

SSP’s College and Career Program offers preparatory resources and tools to help SSP students prepare for college and/or skills based career programs.

FRESHMEN

Freshman Roadmap 

There are critical milestones students should strive to achieve each class year. The SSP roadmap is a ‘planning toolkit’ and a ‘checklist for success’ for high school freshmen that helps them to address and overcome challenges they may face.

SSP’s Roadmap outlines how to write a S.M.A.R.T. goal to help find solutions to challenges. S.M.A.R.T. goals are goals that are (S) Specific, (M) Measurable, (A) Attainable and (R) Relevant in my life at this moment and (T) Time-bound.

Click here to get started on your personalized roadmap.

SOPHOMORES


Sophomore year is the best time to expose students to various career pathways and professional environments. SSP sophomores will receive soft skills training, which includes learning the tools and techniques to make a good first impression in any professional or academic environment. SSP sophomores will be able to put their soft skills into practice in a professional environment at SSP job shadow days and/or career days.
Click here to view the Soft Skills Training Guide.

SOPHOMORES AND JUNIORS

PSAT PREP

We strongly encourage all sophomores and juniors to take the PSAT/NMSQT and PSAT10 practice tests. Highlighted below are suggested resources:

JUNIORS

Junior year is a key year to get ready for college with SAT prep, taking the SAT, and visiting colleges and college fairs.

SAT Prep Courses

SSP juniors will have the opportunity to attend a free SAT Prep course during their winter/spring semester.

Students receive:

  • SAT instruction on a weekly basis for approximately three months from the Ivy Key’s skillful instructors.
  • Individualized support designed to meet student’s test needs and result in improved overall SAT scores.
  • Three mock tests and receive in-depth analyses of results.
  • A two-hour college admissions consulting class at the end of the course.

SAT Prep Free Online Resources 

Recommended Books 

Official SAT Study Guide (2016 Edition)

Vendor: Amazon

Cost: $17.98

New SAT (28th Edition)

Vendor: Barnes and Noble

Cost: $11.25

SENIORS

College Best Fit and Application Process

SSP offers one-on-one college application counseling and “best fit” analysis workshops. The workshop will cover key components of the college application process such as developing a “best fit” college list, developing a strong college essay, and completing college and financial aid applications (FAFSA).

Helpful Resources 

College Applications

  • SUNY (The State University of New York) consist of 64 college campuses that offer over a thousand majors to study. The SUNY Application is accepted by 52 of the 64 State University of New York colleges. The other schools have a campus application form.
  • CUNY (The City University of New York) has 24 colleges and graduate schools located in New York City. The CUNY Application is accepted by all of the colleges within the City University of New York. The deadline is Feb 1st. Students may select up to six colleges on the application.

ADDITIONAL COLLEGE PLANNING RESOURCES

College Planning Resources

  1. BigFuture College
  2. Scholar Matcher
  3. Start Class
  4. Peterson’s
  5. Barron’s Profiles of American Colleges 
  6. NYC College Line
  7. College Scorecard

College Fairs

  • Big Apple College Fair
    Saturday, October 22, 2016
    The Jacob Javits Center, Hall 1B – 1-4pm
    The college fair will host over 200 Colleges and Universities. Admissions’ Representatives will be there to talk with you.
  • The Latino College Expo
    Location:
    New York University
    Kimmel Student Center
    60 Washington Square South
    New York, NY 10012
    Fair Date: 2017 TBD
  • New York National College Fair
    Location:
    Jacob K. Javits Convention Center of New York
    655 West 34th Street
    New York, NY 10001-1188
    212/216-2000
    Fair Date: Sunday, March 26, 2017: 11 a.m.-4 p.m.
  • Southern Westchester College Fair
    Location:
    Westchester Putnam College Conference Committee
    Westchester County Center
    White Plains, NY 10606
    914/739-2313
    Fair Date: Monday, April 24, 2017 (6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m.)

 

COLLEGE FINANCIAL AID AND SCHOLARSHIP

 

College Scholarships

CAREER DEVELOPMENT

PMF Scholarship

ssp_flanigan

Thanks to the generous funding from The Kovner Foundation, SSP launched the Peter M. Flanigan Scholarship in 2015. Every year SSP identifies junior high school SSP students who have an outstanding cumulative GPA of 90 or above and an SAT score of 1450 (based on 2015 exam scoring) or above, and invite them to apply for the scholarship. Three students are awarded the Peter M. Flanigan Scholarship and receive scholarship funding of up to $10,000 per year for four years of college.

The 2016 PMF Scholarship candidates were identified in May 2015. We identified thirty candidates and due to the high caliber of finalists and a very competitive application process, four students were selected as 2016 Peter M. Flanigan Scholars:

  • Keren Agurcia, Aquinas High School
  • Emely Camilo Cuello, St. Raymond Academy
  • Victor Gautreaux Del Villar, Cardinal Hayes High School
  • Robert Payano, All Hallows High School

Past Winners

2015:
Renai Foster, The Mary Louis Academy graduate, attending Amherst College; Albert Peraza, Mount Saint Michael Academy graduate, attending NYU Stern; Ashley Gonzalez-Melo, St. Raymond Academy graduate, attending SUNY Binghamton University

SSP Schools Team Staff and School Coordinators

  • Angel Francis
    Director of Student and School Relations
    Contact: 646-783-2751, afrancis@sspnyc.org
  • Dafina Davis, Recruitment & Relationship Manager
    Contact: 646-783-2755, ddavis@sspnyc.org
    Dafina Davis is the primary contact for the following schools: Academy of Mount St. Ursula, Aquinas, Bishop Kearney, Bishop Loughlin, Cathedral, Preston, St. Catharine Academy, St. Jean Baptiste, St. Joseph, St. Raymond Academy, and The Mary Louis Academy.
  • Ramon Bernardez
    Contact: 646-783-2753, rbernardez@sspnyc.org
    Ramon Bernardez is the primary contact for the following schools: All Hallows High School, Cardinal Hayes High School, Christ the King Regional High School, Cristo Rey, Holy Cross High School, La Salle Academy, Monsignor McClancy High School, Monsignor Scanlan High School, Mount St. Michael Academy, St. Raymond High School Boys
  • Jasmine Alfonseca, Manager, College and Career Program
    Contact: 646-783-2766, jalfonseca@nycssp.org

To contact the SSP Coordinator at your school, please click on the school below:

Bronx

Academy of Mount St. Ursula
All Hallows High School
Aquinas High School
Cardinal Hayes High School
Monsignor Scanlan High School
Mount Saint Michael Academy
Preston High School
St. Barnabas High School
St. Catharine Academy
St. Raymond Academy
St. Raymond High School for Boys

Queens

Christ the King Regional High School
Holy Cross High School
Martin Luther School
The Mary Louis Academy
Monsignor McClancy Memorial High School

Manhattan

Cathedral High School
Cristo Rey
La Salle Academy
St. Jean Baptiste High School

Brooklyn

Bishop Kearney High School
Bishop Loughlin Memorial High School
St. Joseph High School