Pictured left to right: advisor Mr. Ross Giles, Jayden Gbayisomore, Daryl DJ Fields, Nick Joseph, (all Champlin Park HS); Jarrett Moore, Quinten Pointer, Malik Harmon, and advisor Mr. Rumeal Setts (all from Coon Rapids HS).

14th Annual Step-Up Mentorship Graduation

The class of 2024 will be walking across the stage and accepting their diplomas soon enough. But this group of students will always remember they ended 8th grade and started 9th grade in a pandemic.  The road to graduation was not easy.

Northwest Suburban Integration School District (NWSISD) staff celebrated with six members of the Step-Up program on Tuesday, May 7, 2024. The graduating Step-Up students from Champlin Park and Coon Rapids high schools were brought together one last time for lunch at North Hennepin Community College along with their mentors.  The program included a video from across the years, comments from Step-Up team leaders, and a recognition of graduates.

The graduating seniors will spread their wings and expand their horizons across several states come this fall. Students are committed to attend post-secondary programs where they will study nursing, acting, music production, business, kinesiology and exercise science, graphic design, and barbering. Two students are also set to play college football.

The Step-Up Mentorship Program was created to support young men throughout their high school career.  The program begins with the weeklong Summer Summit held at University of St. Thomas, Minneapolis Campus with an intent to prepare students for the increased rigor they will encounter in high school.  Participants are identified by their school district as potentially benefiting from additional academic and social support.  Students who participate in the Summer Summit receive additional guidance and participate in mentorship activities throughout their high school careers. 

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