On May 10, 2012, Governor Deval Patrick and Boston Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Carol Johnson joined more than 500 leaders from education, business and service to celebrate “The Power of Red: City Year’s Real Colors” at City Year Boston’s 17th annual Starry Starry Night gala. The event, hosted at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library this year, recognizes the champions whose support allows City Year Boston to recruit, train, deploy and support corps members in full-time service at Boston schools.
Governor Patrick and Dr. Johnson each noted that to them, “the power of red” is evident in the strong relationships City Year Boston corps members forge with the students they mentor. Prior to the Governor’s remarks, City Year Boston alumna and Civic Engagement Manager Mollie Puskar spoke about the power of physical service and presented an award to Governor Patrick recognizing his tremendous leadership in starting Project 351, which brings together eighth-grade students from every Massachusetts city and town in an annual day of service-learning.
City Year Boston corps member Gabe Solis recalled the personal relationships that brought him to serve with City Year and the gains he has seen his students make at the Irving Middle School. Franklin, a student at the English High School says his City Year corps members are “like a brother and sister” and credits them for motivating him to work harder. Franklin started the year with an F in every course. He has since turned it around and has now earned an A, two Bs and two Cs. Neighborhood House Charter School parent Felicia Wood shared stories about her son and the role City Year has played in his life both in and out of school.
City Year Vice President and Dean Charlie Rose closed the program by thanking attendees for their deep investment in corps members like Gabe to support more parents like Felicia and help more students like Franklin succeed.