Buffalo Prep’s College Graduation Rates Far Surpass National Average
Ongoing research shows remarkable impact of local academic enrichment program
BUFFALO, NY – September 2, 2021 – Buffalo Prep, which provides talented, underrepresented youth access to and preparation for college preparatory high schools and higher education, graduates 92% of its alumni with a bachelor’s degree, or they are currently enrolled to obtain one. An additional 2% of alumni are enrolled or are on track to receive their Certified Nurse Assistant license or Associate of Applied Science degree.
Comparatively, 60% of higher-income students graduate with a bachelor’s degree, whereas only about 16% of low-income college students graduate with a bachelor’s degree, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. The results released today are for year eight of the organization’s in-depth study on the outcomes of its programming. Data collection focused on graduates of Buffalo Prep’s High School Prep program, with 94% of alumni reporting.
“We are incredibly proud of these outstanding figures and our extraordinary alumni,” said Patti Stephen, Robert G. Wilmers Endowed Executive Director of Buffalo Prep. “Our program works, and the data demonstrate not only what students are capable of with Buffalo Prep’s instruction and support, but also what programs like ours across the nation can do to help underrepresented students achieve success by removing barriers and providing access and opportunity for educational and economic success.”
The ongoing data collection is led by Buffalo Prep alumni relations coordinator Myles Hervey (Buffalo Prep ’13) and Dr. Amanda Seccia, postdoctoral researcher at the University of Chicago in the Department of Psychology. “The college graduation rate of students who participated in Buffalo Prep is highly impressive. To me, these numbers represent a high level of program effectiveness,” said Seccia, who received her PhD in Curriculum, Instruction, and the Science of Learning from the University at Buffalo.
Hervey graduated from Canisius College in May with a bachelor’s degree in accounting and will continue his studies in the fall, pursuing his master’s in business administration. He spent the summer interning at PricewaterhouseCoopers in Buffalo, NY, and will be an intern at Deloitte during the school year, with the opportunity for a full-time job offer upon completion.
“Being a Prep alumnus, and part of a group of so many talented individuals, gives me a huge sense of pride. Getting a chance to not only represent Buffalo Prep but the people who have gone through the program before and after me is a huge honor.”
Buffalo Prep last month announced the appointment of its first alumni board president, Luis A. Rodriguez, Jr.
“I’m excited to help lead an organization that has provided so much opportunity for me,” said Rodriguez, CEO of Rodriguez Construction Group. “I’m eager with my new board president position to expand and provide opportunities to students in the community I was born and raised in and help shape the future leaders of tomorrow.”
Buffalo Prep alumna and City Court Judge, Honorable JaHarr Pridgen ’94, was named to the executive board and Matthew Becton, ‘01, Senior Manager at Verizon, was voted on as a new board member.
Over 200 students participated in Buffalo Prep’s 2021 summer programming at three sites across the city of Buffalo: Prep Scholars Academy at The Belle Center; Middle School Prep at Nichols School; and High School Prep at Buffalo Prep’s location in the recently renovated Allen Hall on the University at Buffalo South Campus.
The organization recently celebrated the graduates of the High School Prep Class of 2021 for completing the rigorous 14-month program. Scholars are attending local private and public college preparatory high schools this fall, including Canisius High School, St. Joseph’s Collegiate Institute, The Park School of Buffalo, and Hutchinson Central Technical Institute.
Buffalo Prep’s pipeline of programs —which serve over 650 students and alumni each year and are provided free to families—is 100 percent privately funded by donors in the community. To learn more, visit buffaloprep.com or facebook.com/buffaloprep.
About Buffalo Prep
Since its founding in 1989, Buffalo Prep has worked with more than 2,000 underrepresented students to provide academic and social support in a rigorous and nurturing environment. Through this preparatory process, Buffalo Prep students are able to enter and excel in local private and competitive public high schools, colleges and universities.