At Harlem Children’s Zone (HCZ), we believe college is the catalyst for our young people’s success. It empowers them to earn a degree and build bright careers. It helps them achieve their dreams — however they define them.
That’s why everything we do at HCZ is geared toward getting our scholars (as we call our students) to and through college. This effort starts when they are born and continues all the way to when they get their first jobs.
Our results speak for themselves:
- Nearly 100% of our scholars are accepted into college each year.
- 1,000+ our scholars are enrolled at universities across the nation.
- Nearly 1,700 of our scholars have earned a college degree.
Keep scrolling to discover more about how HCZ can help your child get into college, earn their degree, and build their career!
The path to college starts in preschool
College may be years away for our youngest scholars. But from the time they’re very young, we plant the seed of college aspirations.
At our Harlem Gems preschools, we’ll prepare your scholar to succeed in K-12 and beyond — building a strong academic foundation and starting them on the path to college and career.
We help your child pay for college
Having college hopes and dreams is one thing. Paying for them is another. That’s, in part, why HCZ created Wealth Builds. The program will empower your scholar to build a successful financial future — including help covering the cost of college tuition!
Wealth Builds starts from the moment our scholars come into The Baby College and continues throughout our pathway of cradle-to-career services. It includes:
- Financial Education & Investments – Scholars gain financial tools and resources to develop personal financial plans and pay for college.
- Cradle-to-Career Pathway – Scholars benefit from holistic services that support them from the moment they are born to the moment they start their careers.
We know it’s not enough for your scholar to be accepted into college. At HCZ, we invest in their future — giving them the financial education and resources to help pay for it, too.
Our schools help your child get to and through college
After graduating from Harlem Gems, you can enroll your scholar in HCZ Promise Academy, our top-performing K-12 charter schools.
When your scholar joins HCZ Promise Academy, we promise to do whatever it takes to get them to and through college. That includes providing quality instruction, free after-school programs, chef-prepared healthy meals, and so much more.
The promise of college is even part of our school creed!
As juniors and seniors, we’ll go all in on preparing your scholar for their post-secondary journey. They will:
- Take Advanced Placement courses
- Attend college exposures
- Intern with leading companies
- Get support applying for college, picking their major, and securing financial aid
Our after-school programs help your scholar prepare for and apply to college
If your child enrolls in our Zone Afterschool Programs, they’ll have the opportunity to build career-ready skills and a network of professional contacts. The experience gives them a leg up when they go off to college (e.g., picking out a major) and start their career (e.g., knowing which profession they want to pursue).
Our Zone Afterschool Programs include:
- Peacemakers – program supporting scholars in Central Harlem’s public schools
- A Cut Above – K-8 after-school program
- Academy of Arts and Civic Engagement – high school arts after-school program
- Employment and Technology Center – high school STEM after-school program
- Countee Cullen Community Center – high school media arts after-school program
In our high school after-school programs, our college coordinators will help your child navigate the college application process. This includes writing their college essay, selecting a college and major, and securing financial aid.
Our College Success Office helps your scholar thrive in college and earn their degree
But our support doesn’t end when your child goes off to college. As we like to say at HCZ: you may leave the Zone, but the Zone never leaves you!
When your child goes to college, our College Success Office (CSO) has their back.
Our CSO services include:
- One-on-one coaching
- Academic, emotional, and financial support
- Check-ins with scholars to monitor progress
- Visits from CSO staff to help scholars establish and maintain relationships with campus and community liaisons
Wealth Builds will help your child launch their career
But our support doesn’t even stop at college! Once they earn their degree, we help your scholar launch their career. Through Wealth Builds Career Readiness, we offer workshops, internships, and other life-changing opportunities to our high school and college-age scholars to empower them to thrive in the professional world.
Most recently, our scholars participated in a four-week program exploring entrepreneurship and foundational business skills. It culminated in a competition where our scholars pitched their business ideas and won prizes.
From the moment your scholar comes through our doors, we put them on the pathway to college and career. It’s the key to their success. It’s why we get up in the morning. It’s why we do this work.