MA Students Need Our Help, JFYNetWorks Joins #GivingTuesday Movement

Patti Parisella
617-338-0815 x 222

JFYNetWorks joins the Global #GivingTuesday Movement pledges to prepare urban youth for successful college entry without the need for remedial courses.

Boston, MA November 23, 2016 – JFYNetWorks has joined #GivingTuesday, a global day of giving that harnesses the collective power of individuals, communities and organizations to encourage philanthropy and to celebrate generosity worldwide. JFYNetWorks helps urban high school students prepare for successful college entry with blended learning instructional programs that eliminate the need for remedial college courses.

Occurring this year on November 29, #GivingTuesday is held annually on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving (in the U.S.) and the widely-recognized shopping events Black Friday and Cyber Monday to kick-off the holiday giving season and inspire people to collaborate in improving their local communities and to give back in impactful ways to the charities and causes they support.

Less than half of Massachusetts high school graduates get any type of college degree. In our economy, these young people are unable to compete for better jobs, higher incomes, stable and secure lives. The biggest obstacle to getting a college degree is the remedial college course. Remedial courses cost full tuition and fees but give zero credits toward a degree. Most students have to take more than one and as many as three or four.

Remedial courses are required for students who score low on college placement tests because their reading and math skills are below college level, and because they have not been prepared for the tests. Each year, 7,000 students entering our public higher education system are placed in remediation. 85% will drop out of college without a degree. Their ability to contribute to the Massachusetts economy will be limited, with consequences for themselves and for employers who need skilled workers.

JFYNetWorks helps students build the skills to meet college requirements with blended learning programs in high schools. So far, our JFYNet blended learning program has helped Massachusetts students eliminate 3500 remedial courses and save $2 million in wasted costs. We have joined #GivingTuesday to help thousands more high school students in Boston, Springfield, Revere, Quincy, Lowell, Haverhill and other cities around the state improve their skills, raise their placement scores and eliminate remedial courses, clearing the path to a degree. JFYNet gives young people the chance to gain the education and the jobs they need for a secure, stable and self-sufficient future.

“JFYNet College Readiness is the missing link in our education-workforce pipeline,” said former Education Commissioner David Driscoll, under whose stewardship the program began. “It has proved its effectiveness for more than a decade. If we had this program in every urban high school in the Commonwealth, we would have the skilled workforce our companies need and the expanding middle class our economy needs. College Readiness is the key to economic growth and social stability. This program can deliver it.”

92Y − a cultural center in New York City that, since 1874, has been bringing people together around its core values of community service and giving back − conceptualized #GivingTuesday as a new way of linking individuals and causes to strengthen communities and encourage giving. In 2015, the fourth year of the movement, #GivingTuesday brought together over 45,000 partners in 71 countries and helped raise nearly $117 Million online in the US alone.

“We have been incredibly inspired by the generosity in time, efforts and ideas that have brought our concept for a worldwide movement into reality,” said Henry Timms, founder of #GivingTuesday and executive director of 92Y. “As we embark on our fifth year of #GivingTuesday, we are encouraged by the early response from partners eager to continue making an impact in this global conversation.”

Those who are interested in joining JFYNetWorks’ #GivingTuesday initiative can visit For more details about the #GivingTuesday movement, visit the #GivingTuesday website (, Facebook page ( or follow @GivingTues and the #GivingTuesday hashtag on social media.

JFYNetWorks (JFY) is a Boston-based non-profit organization founded in 1976 under the name Jobs For Youth with the mission of helping disadvantaged urban youth and young adults prepare for and find jobs. Services have been adapted continuously over the years to keep pace with the changing demands of the labor market. Today, JFY focuses on college readiness, which is defined by the state as “measured ability to qualify for admission to degree-credit college courses, without remediation.” Entering college at the credit-earning level increases the probability of completing college and successfully entering the workforce.

JFY has a 39-year history of conceiving, developing and conducting programs to enhance the economic opportunity and social mobility of low-income urban youth and young adults. These programs have utilized various education and training strategies over the years as the labor market has evolved, from competency-based GED instruction to biotechnology lab training to online college preparation. Our strategy throughout has been to recognize changes in the economy and adjust our programs to the new labor market demands. In making these adjustments, we always seek a point of leverage where our intervention can make a decisive difference and provide a scalable and sustainable model for expansion to large-scale outcomes.

The consistent mission and goal of JFY has been to increase the economic opportunity and social mobility of disadvantaged, primarily urban, youth through education and training programs that meet the demands of the labor market. Today, college-level skills – with or without the degree – are the threshold of employability. Hence the program JFYNet College and Career Readiness.

For more information, contact: Patti Parisella at 617-338-0815 x 222 or

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