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Children and Youth Learning Initiative starts the year with a 'bang'
9/11/09

Alfred University’s Children and Youth Learning Initiative (CYLI) began its 2009-10 program year with a bang night as students from Whitesville Central School attended a program called Career Cluster Explosion, designed to identify jobs the students might be interested in and then link those jobs with educational choices visitors should make in their current educational environment.

“ I am really pleased with the way this program developed. I think that it addresses CYLI’s mission to promote good choices among Allegany County youth and gives them tools that are immediately useful in their lives.” said Mark McFadden, program presenter and director of Alfred University’s Career Development Center.

CYLI is offering a full slate of programs in the coming year, including old favorites such as “Chess-o-rama” and “Drawn 2 Diversity” as well as some newcomers, noted Christopher Romanchock, program director.

CYLI will be partnering with Pat Monahan of Alfred University’s Rural Justice Institute to offer the Safe Dating Program, Dr. Corrie Burdick, education professor, is back with another art exploration entitled “Print-o-ganza” and the Allegany-Western Steuben Rural Health Network will be partnering with CYLI in the spring to offer a health career fair that draws on health professionals from around the county to demonstrate real technology and techniques of that industry.

“This program year is particularly rich, we have many new partners who will bring new opportunities to the youth of Allegany county,” said Romanchock.

Six AU student volunteers joined CYLI for the event on Wednesday that concluded with AU Dining Service’s Beach Party for dinner. “This is a BLAST!” said senior Nick Rampersad ,who had just cooled off on the slip ‘n slide after leading an impromptu dance party.

Rampersad, a history major from Brooklyn, NY, is the son of Brian Rampersad of Jackson Heights and Beverly Felmine of Brooklyn. He is a graduate of Midwood High School at Brooklyn College.
Volunteer coordinator Joel Buchanan said: “to have such a great turnout of volunteers this early is heartening- but we are always in need of more help.” He went on to say that any student interested in helping the program should contact CYLI@alfred.edu.

Buchanan, a first-year graduate student who is working toward a master’s degree in literacy education, is a graduate of Scio Central School. His parents are David Buchanan of Almond, NY, and Deb Aumick of Scio, NY.

CYLI is a grant-funded venture that provides after-school programming to students in Allegany and Western Steuben counties, free of charge. The program’s goal is to encourage students to attend college after high school graduation.