University hosts Brooklyn Jesuit Prep and Cristo Rey camps

University hosts Brooklyn Jesuit Prep and Cristo Rey camps

In July, 83 middle-schoolers from Brooklyn Jesuit Prep converged on campus for Summer Leadership Camp, a program now in its ninth year. The children, many of whom live in the Crown Heights section of Brooklyn, took part in activities at the University and Fairfield Prep designed to develop young leaders who are open to growth and committed to doing justice, while giving the students a life experience on a Jesuit campus.

“Camp allows students a structured, safe place with three square meals a day,” said Greg Arte, camp director. “While their neighborhood peers spend the summer on stoops and blocks in the summer heat of Brooklyn, our students get to participate in activities at Fairfield University that they never dreamed of doing or accomplishing. From learning to swim in the pool, to seeing stags and wild turkeys on hikes, to being more reflective about goals and aspirations, the summer program builds our school community and ensures we have a successful rest of the school year.”

Fairfield also welcomed several high school students to the annual Cristo Rey College Exploration Summer Program and Pre-College Workshops in July. Cristo Rey schools, which are located in 17 states and the District of Columbia, provide a Catholic college preparatory education to 7,400 young people who live in urban communities with limited educational options.

The weeklong College Exploration Summer Program is designed to increase college access and awareness, and helps students select an appropriate college for the future. Fairfield professors expose students to what they should expect in a college classroom environment. They are introduced to a number of Jesuit principles and asked to reflect daily on what they experienced. They are also exposed to colleges and universities beyond Fairfield, with visits to other local institutions.

“We want to instill an added sense of confidence in these students about who they are, where they are going, and what they can accomplish with the proper dedication,” said Nakia Letang, associate director of Undergraduate Admission.