Brooklyn Prospect High School is celebrating a 100% college acceptance rate for its graduating class—for the fourth consecutive year.
At College Decision Day on May 19, BPHS students walked across the stage one by one, revealing to a crowded gym filled with their peers, teachers, and family members what colleges they would be attending in September.
Members of the Class of 2023 will attend colleges in 34 states and three different countries, totaling 982 college acceptances at 228 colleges for the prestigious class.
“Seniors, you have overcome unprecedented challenges during your first two years of high school to be able to make it to this day—evidence that you can overcome anything else ahead,” said Tresha Ward, CEO of Prospect Schools. “Our future looks brighter with you all stepping out into the world with the experiences you’ve developed here at Prospect.”
There’s no doubt that the incredible work of the high school’s College Counseling team played a part in this wonderful outcome, said BPHS Principal Wendell Cheung.
“Huge PROPS to Enuma [Menkiti], Allison [Balogh], Nora [Elnagar], Krystal [Bostick] and the many supporters who made [this day] happen,” he said.
Indeed the College Counseling office made an effort to make that 100% acceptance rate goal they first achieved in 2022 by expanding the early application process to a broader pool of students. The push paid off as 60+ students submit early applications—the network’s largest and most diverse early pool ever, and 81% of those students were accepted at their first-choice college.
After they graduate from Brooklyn Prospect, 4% of seniors will head to a two-year or community college, 6% will be taking a gap year or heading directly into the workforce, and 90% will be attending a 4-year college.
“We have an ambitious goal of making sure our students achieve the necessary tools for a happy life–earning degrees, finding meaningful work, and moving their families and communities forward,” said Enuma Menkiti, Director of College. “We are here to celebrate the possibilities that open up with a lot of hard work and dedication and the distances that can be traveled with the love and support of family and staff. Our students prove how much can happen when you invest in your future. Our students are the evidence that EVERYTHING IS POSSIBLE!”
The standing-room-only event was hosted by Interim Deputy Principal AJ Ryan and College Counselor Kristal Bostick.
Nora Elnagar and Alison Balogh, who also serve as counselors in the College Office, announced the headlines about the Class of 2023:
“We are proud to say that this is the highest ever percentage of BP students choosing to pursue their Bachelor’s degree,” said Elnagar. “We have students going to destinations as close as here in Brooklyn and as far away as Germany!”
New York opportunity programs like HEOP for private colleges, EOP for SUNYs, and SEEK at CUNY are full scholarship programs that help students afford their reach school. Yet the process is highly competitive and grueling and involves extensive financial paperwork, interviews, and essays. That’s where the College team comes in—providing information, support, and that extra nudge so the students make deadlines.
“… We had 32 acceptances to opportunity programs, and 21 students will be attending college opportunity programs,” Balogh said. “On top of this, we had a number of students receive special scholarships to prestigious programs like the Posse Foundation, Simons STEM Scholars, various Honors Colleges, and SUNY Albany’s Leadership Cohort. We could not be more proud of the class of 2023 for forging this path to college.”
There’s a uniquely special group within this Class of 2023. Fifty of them started with Prospect Schools back in 2016 as founding 6th graders of Clinton Hill Middle School.
“As the founding co-principal of CHMS, it has been a unique and wonderful experience seeing them grow over the past 7 years,” said Kim Raccio, who now serves as Senior Director of New Schools & Leaders. “This [Class of 2023] was [also] our first class that brought together the students from our two middle schools— Windsor Terrace and Clinton Hill. The blending of our founding and veteran middle school communities into 9th grade made this a truly exceptional class. I’m so proud of everything they have accomplished and so excited to see what their future holds in store for them!”
The joyous event was covered by News 12 Brooklyn. Watch the segment, which aired several times on May 19 and 20, here.