While the odds of going to college are not good for many of Newark’s 73,000 children, everyone in this college prep program goes to college. The odd thing about that success is that it occurs among students who otherwise might not have had a chance to continue their education.

Everyone in This College Prep Program Goes To CollegeFor the 130 students enrolled in the New Jersey Law and Education Empowerment Project, or NJ LEEP, the odds are in their favor.

They enroll in the summer after their eighth grade year to enter the after school college prep program which is highly competitive. The program targets teens who are interested in law and in attending college.  It is affiliated with Seton Hall’s law school.

600 students applied this year, and approximately 45 were accepted.  The classes are held after school, on Saturdays, and during the summer.  Students learn about expository writing, SAT and ACT prep, how to fill out college applications, and participate in a constitutional law debate. Since the program started nine years ago, 100 percent of the students have been accepted to college.

According to executive director Matthew Feinstein, students “have very high expectations individually, and as a cohort.”

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