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Jul
01

CitySquash Wins 3 More Urban National Titles

 

It was another exhilarating weekend at the Urban Individual National Championships at Amherst and Williams colleges. CitySquash had 68 team members compete across 10 divisions — among 450+ players from 17 national and international  Squash + Education Alliance programs — and came away with three overall titles! Our team also secured two 2nd place, one 3rd place, and two 4th place finishes. CitySquash has now won a record 107 Urban National Titles in its 17-year history!

 

Congratulations to Ashley Amaro (GU11), Lizbeth Barroso (GU15), and Caleb Boateng (BU17) for bringing home division titles. A special thanks goes out to all of our students and dedicated staff for their hard work, along with the Squash + Education Alliance for putting together another great event!

 

 

 

May
15

Spring Tour Explorers

 

From red rocks to coastal lighthouses, wilderness camping to college visits, our annual Spring Tours were a smashing success. For the eighth year in a row, our team members and hardworking staff explored regions beyond the boroughs on 6 unique enrichment trips, visiting a combined 10 different states. For many team members, it was the first time out of the state or on an airplane. Highlighted by museum and cultural site visits, new food and adventures, and yes, even a little squash, the 2019 edition created memories and camaraderie that will last a lifetime.

   
Below are some of our favorite moments from the trips. Special thanks goes to our network of generous hosts and local guides: Silvia Campo and David Hermer, Palmer and Paula Page, Eric Eiteljorg and family from Impact 360, Ben and Lori Matthews, Kathy and Steve Parks, Penn Lunger and family, Suzie Pierrepont, Sarah and Tim Belk, Marcy and Khalil Saliba, the folks at Episcopal High School and St. Andrew’s School (DE), Southampton Youth Services, Steel City Squash, SquashWise, SquashBusters Providence, Kids on Point, and Wild Hope Farm.
 
 
 
Baltimore – Washington D.C. – Philadelphia
 
“I really liked when we baked brownies as a group. It helped me get to know my older teammates on the trip. Now that we are back, I feel like these relationships have gotten stronger.” – Emani, 8th grade
 
 
 
West Virginia – Pittsburgh 
 
“Our trip was phenomenal. We went water rafting, hiking, stargazing, and more. But my favorite part was getting to hang out with my younger teammates. Before the trip, Jayden was just a younger student I did not know very well. After Sping Tour, I’m able to call him a brother.” – Kevin, 11th Grade
 
 
Boston – Providence 
 
“I enjoyed the Spring Tour trip because it was fun and full of joy. Thank you CitySquash for this opportunity! I loved meeting Jordyn’s family and Tina and Giana, the 8th grade leaders on the trip. I loved the aquarium. I will never forget this trip.” – Mireyli, 6th Grade
 
 
Denver, CO – Moab, UT 
 
“Colorado was amazing! We got to see landscapes and stars that we are unable to see from New York City. We went stargazing and we got to learn about constellations” – Joey, 8th Grade
 
 
Long Island East End 
 
“The trip was a spectacular experience because I got to know my teammates better. It felt like we were all sisters by the end” – Stephanie, 5th Grade
 
 
Charleston
 
“The farm was relaxing because we got to spend time in nature. My favorite part was learning to canoe because we got be with friends and try a new experience.” – Merieme, 7th grade
Mar
06

Three More Urban National Titles for CitySquash!

 
This past weekend, CitySquash competed in the Urban Team National Championships at Yale University and Choate Rosemary Hall. Over 550 players from 21 cities came together for the annual event that is put on by the Squash + Education Alliance. In the end, our CitySquash team members made it through to 5 of the 6 championship finals, winning 3 of them.
 
Congratulations to our Elementary Boys, Elementary Girls, and Middle School Boys teams for bringing home the hardware. CitySquash has now won a record 104 Urban National Titles in its 17-year history! More importantly, our team members competed with grit, passion, and sportsmanship all weekend.
 
Below are some highlights from the weekend. Thank you for providing these lifelong memories for our team members.  
 
 
 
 
Feb
20

Squash Update: MS and HS Team Championships

 

The months of January and February were busy for CitySquash coaches and players, capped off by trips to Middle School and High School Team Nationals. At Middle School Nationals, both the boys and girls A teams earned 7th place in their divisions while representing M.S. 45. Highlights included Alexis storming back from an 0-2 deficit in his final match to win and Edward playing what coaches called the “best squash of his life.”

 

At High School Nationals one week later, the girls placed 7th in their division including a nail-biting win over the Hill School. Perla and Jazlyn collected a few 5-game match wins to lead the way. The boys team had a tougher go on the court, but demonstrated grit and tenacity all weekend. Many thanks to our tireless coaches and generous hosts for helping make the trip possible. Up next on the squash calendar: the 2019 Urban Team National Championships at Yale and Choate. 

Jan
15

Class of 2023 Early Decisions

 

6 CitySquash seniors applied early decision to college and in December, all 6 found out they were admitted! Congratulations to our Class of 2023 Early Acceptances:

 

Chris Lucero – Hamilton College

Vanessa Lucero – Franklin & Marshall College

Victoria Haghighi – Bates College

Tanya Mendoza – Connecticut College

Juan Santos – Middlebury College

Xitlali Zuniga – St. Lawrence University 

Oct
10

Chris Fernandez to Lead Dickinson College Squash

 

CitySquash alumnus and Director of Squash Chris Fernandez has been named the new Men’s and Women’s Head Squash Coach of Dickinson College. Fernandez becomes the first urban squash alumnus to lead a varsity college program. “I am truly grateful for such an opportunity and look forward to making urban squash, Dickinson and everyone who’s supported me proud,” Fernandez said. Both of Dickinson’s teams finished in the top-20 in the country last year.

 

Fernandez first stepped onto the squash court in 2004 as part of the second cohort ever to try out for CitySquash. Chris went on to win a scholarship to the Canterbury School in Connecticut and then moved on to St. Lawrence University, where as a senior, he captained the men’s squash team that was a National Championship finalist. For the past three years, he has served as CitySquash’s Director of Squash in the Bronx.

 

Squash + Education Alliance Executive Director Tim Wyant, who was leading CitySquash when Fernandez first joined, is one of many proud mentors excited by the news: “Chris will do an outstanding job at Dickinson. Since the time he joined CitySquash in sixth grade, he has been a trailblazer, pushing the boundaries of what people in our network thought possible: winning one national title after another, being a two-sport college athlete, captaining a team that reached the finals of the college nationals. He has a generous spirit, is ferociously competitive, and is a person of integrity.”

 

Read more about the announcement here. Please join us in thanking Chris for his dedicated coaching and best of luck at the collegiate level!

 

 

 

Sep
12

Hiking, Team-Building, and Fun in Lake Placid!

Over 100 CitySquash team members, alumni, and staff from the Bronx and Brooklyn sites traveled to Lake Placid at the end of August for our annual wilderness retreat. Activities included team-building games, swimming, competing in a multi-day Cabin Color Challenge, and hiking up one of the Adirondack high peaks. The retreat provided CitySquash with a unique opportunity to bring team members of all ages and locations together, allowing for both bonding and reflection as we kickoff another programming year. This was especially on display at the final campfire, when team members got to enjoy s’mores and listen to some of the high school seniors and alumni reflect on their journeys through CitySquash. A big thank you to the Reiss Family for hosting the team in Lake Placid!
 
See below for some picture from the memorable week!
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Jul
27

First Annual CitySquash Serves a Success!

CitySquash team members, family members, staff, and board fanned out into the Bronx, Brooklyn, and Manhattan for the first annual CitySquash Serves day of community service! 125 participants in total rolled up their sleeves across 7 service projects, including delivering meals to home-bound seniors, removing invasive plants along the Bronx River, walking dogs at an animal shelter, and packing lunches for Habitat for Humanity volunteers. Afterwords, groups reflected on their projects and impact before coming back together at Fordham University for a celebration. Many thanks to all of our community partners, including the Bronx River Alliance, Sean Casey Animal Rescue, Citymeals on Wheels, Habitat for Humanity NYC, Project Harmony, and more. See below for some picture from the memorable day!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jul
18

Blackstone Volunteer Day at CitySquash Summer Camp

CitySquash students and an energetic group of volunteers from Blackstone braved the stormy weather for a fun afternoon of squash and enrichment activities at Fordham University. On the court, the group ran through a series of drills and games, with some CitySquashers giving pointers to the volunteers who were stepping onto the court for the very first time. Off the court, the group from Blackstone helped out in a variety of ways: art projects with the Elementary students, Spanish grammar and vocabulary with the Middle School students, and mock interviews for our seniors and 8th graders preparing to apply for college and boarding school this fall.

 

See below for some pictures from the day. Thank you again to Blackstone for all your support!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Apr
26

CitySquash Hits the Road

 

 

5 tours. 13 cities. Over 6,900 miles. The CitySquash team spent Spring Break on the road on our annual Spring Enrichment Tours. For the seventh year in a row, our team members and hardworking staff explored regions beyond NYC on these unique enrichment tours, which included museum and cultural site visits, new food and experiences, and yes, even a little squash.

 

Below are pictures and reflections from our 2018 Spring Tours. Special thanks goes to our network of generous hosts: the Byrnes family, the Mathias family, Veer Seth, the Jipp-Shyamsundar family, Emma Head, Dave Moorish, and Rob Brooks. Thank you for supporting these lifetime memories! 

 

The Elementary School Tour at the Baltimore Aquarium, where they spent the night sleeping among the sharks!

 

Elementary School Tour: Chesepeake Bay – Washington D.C. – Baltimore

 “My favorite thing about the trip was visiting George Washington’s house and the aquarium because we saw amazing sharks.” – Rafael, 4th grade

 

The Middle School Tour in front of the Nashville Parthenon in Tennessee.

 

Middle School Tour: Smoky Mountains – Nashville – St. Louis

 “I loved it all, because everything was a new experience for me. If I had to pick, I would say the Gateway Arch was my favorite. I’ve never seen a monument quite like it before.” – Fatima, 7th grade

 

The Squash Tour takes in a Detroit Tigers Baseball game.

 

Squash Tour: Detroit – Toronto – Niagara Falls

“My favorite part of this trip is seeing my younger classmates play squash along with learning from them. I enjoyed playing with them because I don’t do it often. Being an older classmate has made me realize the responsibility I have to my team. I also enjoyed stopping in the Heidelberg Project in Detroit because we saw a different perspective on art.” – Giselle, 12th grade

 

Students from the Brooklyn program enjoy some down time at their campsite in North Carolina.

 

Brooklyn Tour: Washington D.C. – Smoky Mountains – Atlanta

 “Being at the National Center for Civil and Human Rights opened my eyes more to the inequalities faced by many people in our country and beyond.”  – Zoe, 7th grade

 

The High School Tour expresses their gratitude outside one of their host stays.

 

High School Tour: Hartford – Albany

 “I have connected more with my teammates. My favorite part was when we prepared a meal together. It was challenging but we have learned new skills such as communication, working together and patience.” – Seth, 10th grade