The Champion Academy Extreme Mentoring and Empowerment Initiative, founded by Rochester native and NFL Super Bowl champion Roland Williams, will extend the pilot phase of its program into a fourth year.
The pilot phase was planned originally for three years; however, year-over-year results and interest from teachers, school administrators and local philanthropists provided an opportunity to expand these efforts.
“We are so grateful for the continued success of the Champion Academy and the outpouring of support from educators and philanthropists interested in innovative, scalable and impactful solutions,” Williams said. “Extending our pilot phase will allow us to continue to develop our Extreme Mentoring and Empowerment model into a sustainable, fully funded initiative that will impact the region for a long time.”
The added pilot year was made possible by a large increase in pledged contributions received during the 2017-18 school year totaling more than $1.6 million, led by $1 million from the William and Mildred Levine Foundation and a $400,000 grant from the Polisseni Foundation.
“The Polisseni Foundation proudly supports the efforts of the Champion Academy Extreme Mentoring and Empowerment Initiative to improve the quality of life of hundreds of teens in poverty in our community,” Wanda Polisseni said. “We are excited to be a part of this innovative solution for years to come.”
Results from the program include 82 percent of active members reporting improved GPAs from previous academic years, 119 members achieving at least a 3.0 GPA for the first time, 20 members achieving at least a 4.0 GPA for the first time, 5,713 hours of community service performed by active members, 91 percent of active members showing improved attitudes toward developing healthy relationships with peers and adults outside of family, 89 percent of active members showing improved attitudes toward developing healthy relationships with police officers and authority figures, 96 percent of active members improving their financial literacy skills and 91 percent of active members improving their social etiquette fundamentals.
Visit championacademyroc.org for information.