Lynn, MA – December 19, 2019 – Two KIPP Academy Lynn Collegiate students have been chosen as Posse Scholars, which awards full scholarships to students with extraordinary leadership and academic potential, and places them at highly selective colleges and universities as part of a group of 10 students from the same city. This “posse” of students receives support and development from their senior year of high school through their time on campus. Posse is one of the most successful college scholarship and support systems in the country, with a 90% graduation rate and over 9,000 alumni.
Jorge Trejo Fernandez and Brian Leon have both been at KIPP since 5th grade. They both are peer counseling leaders and members of the Black Student Union. Brian is on the student council and Jorge plays for the basketball team. Both are excited for their next step and were relieved to have the college process end early with an outstanding result.
“I got the call from the Posse Boston office last week,” said Jorge. ‘They asked me how I thought my interview went and I said good, that I did my best. Then they said how would you like to be part of the Centre College Posse Class of 2024? I said I would like that very much! Then I heard a bunch of cheering and clapping from the other people in the office, and I was just really excited.”
Both students first heard about Posse through Mr. Alvaro Peters, who was a teacher and is now an Assistant Principal at KIPP Academy Lynn Collegiate. “He was always talking about being a Posse Scholar at Union and encouraged us to think about it but I never thought I would actually be chosen,” says Brian. “Over a thousand people are nominated so the chances seem slim, but with every passing round there are fewer people.”
Upon learning that Brian and Jorge had been chosen as Posse scholars, Mr. Peters said, “I’m far more excited, proud and energized that these young men received Posse than I was even for myself, when I was awarded it so many years ago! If you knew the extent to how truly awesome they are, you would understand why. Let this serve as a reminder of the power of human connection, for the college counseling team and I are simply paying our blessings forward and are certain these young men will carry the torch.”
When asked about why they chose Centre, Brian said, “I chose Centre because I want to eventually become a lawyer, and I wanted to major in history and minor in social justice, which I will be able to do there.” He adds, “For me, going to school in Kentucky is going to be a major change. I’ve never even been on an airplane before. I am excited to get myself ready for the whole experience.”
Jorge says, “Centre was my first choice because of the Centre Commitment. They said that you will graduate in four years, have an internship opportunity, and study abroad. I liked how they didn’t say these are options, but they commit that it will happen.” He adds, “I feel like I have been stressing myself out with the whole college process, so now that it’s over I can mentally prepare and relax.”
About the Posse Foundation:
Since 1989, The Posse Foundation has identified, recruited and trained more than 9,200 public high school students with extraordinary academic and leadership. These students have received a total of $1.4 billion in full-tuition leadership scholarships from Posse’s partner colleges since the program’s inception. Most important, Posse Scholars persist and graduate at a rate of 90 percent and make a visible difference on campus and throughout their professional careers. Posse’s ultimate goal is to build a leadership network that better represents the country’s rich diversity.
About KIPP Massachusetts
KIPP Massachusetts is part of a non-profit network of college preparatory, public charter schools educating elementary, middle, and high school students. KIPP MA operates five public charter schools across Boston and Lynn, serving more than 2,000 students in grades K-12. KIPP MA has a 15-year track record of preparing students in educationally under-served communities for success in college and life.
KIPP is a non-profit network of college-preparatory public charter schools educating elementary, middle, and high school students. KIPP schools are part of the free public school system and enrollment is open to all students. There are 242 KIPP schools in 20 states and the District of Columbia educating over 100,000 students on their path to and through college, careers, and life. KIPP believes that great teachers and school leaders, a supportive learning environment, and an emphasis on both academics and character are the foundation for student success. KIPP students complete college at a rate that is above the national average for all students and four times higher than that of students from similar economic backgrounds.