City Squash
Enabling New York City youth to fulfill their academic,
athletic and personal potential.

Happy Holidays!

December 2015

Friends of CitySquash,

This August, over 100 CitySquashers traveled to Lake Placid for a team-building retreat. It was the largest gathering of CitySquashers to-date, and included team members from both the Bronx and our recently-launched Brooklyn program. One of the most moving parts of the trip was bringing together our oldest and youngest students. Two of these students were Emani Diaz and Andrew Cadienhead.

Emani is the kind of 10-year-old who bubbles with enthusiasm for every opportunity presented to her. She recently exclaimed to a staff member, “All the things I do for the first time, I seem to do with CitySquash!” Some of Emani’s firsts this year included: roller-skating, riding on a boat, roasting marshmallows around a campfire, and competing in a squash tournament. Emani is eager for more new experiences, which will certainly come. Now that she is in CitySquash, she has the opportunity to:

Excel in School – CitySquashers receive 150+ hours of academic enrichment each year.

Strengthen Her Character – CitySquashers develop mindfulness through a Social-Emotional Learning curriculum, which includes daily meditation and weekly advisory groups.

Become a First-Generation College Graduate – 98% of CitySquash high school graduates have gone to college and all have graduated, or are on track to do so, within six years.

Achieve Professional Success – CitySquash’s career services helped secure 19 internships last year and 94% of team members have become gainfully employed within six months of college graduation.

See the World – CitySquashers have traveled with our program to 29 states and 13 countries.

While Emani’s CitySquash journey is just beginning, Andrew’s is coming to a close. At the campfire on our final night in Lake Placid, Andrew, as a college junior, was invited to reflect on his time with CitySquash—traveling abroad, captaining squash teams, being elected president of the Taft student body, gaining admission to Middlebury College, and interning at FreshDirect. His advice was, “Cherish these moments and the people you’re sharing them with. They will be your closest friends for the rest of your life.”

As I watched Emani and the younger team members look at Andrew with admiration, I was struck by how lucky our new team members are to have such incredible role models. I also appreciated how nice it is for our older CitySquashers to have the younger ones to remind them of the joy of experiencing new things.

Thank you for bringing together Emani, Andrew, and the 190 other student-athletes that make up our CitySquash team. We wish you a 2016 filled with family, friends, and maybe even some firsts!

Happy Holidays,

Terence Li
Executive Director


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