East River Development Alliance
38-81 13th Street
Long Island City
Since 2005, the ERDA College Access Program has helped hundreds of low-income families prepare for and enroll in college. Most of the students that ERDA works with come from New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) developments in western Queens (Queensbridge, Ravenswood, Woodside, and Astoria) - and the vast majority of students in our program are the first in their families to attend college. As part of ERDA's overarching mission to provide residents of public housing with the tools and resources they need to achieve self-sufficiency and economic mobility, we realize that making college an expectation is a crucial component. Therefore, as our students move through the pipeline from high school to college, the College Access Program aims to achieve the following: Increase the high school graduation rate in NYCHA communities Increase the number of NYCHA students applying to college Increase the number of NYCHA students obtaining four year college degrees Each year, the ERDA College Access Program serves 50 students in grades eleven and twelve on a first-come, first-served basis. Students receive a Kaplan SAT course, college exploration trips and workshops, college application assistance, and financial aid counseling. Our program boasts a three pronged approach to preparing students for college: academic achievement, building professional competencies (e.g. time management, negotiating the systems and informational channels during the application process, and financing/scholarships); and strengthening personal capabilities.