can be the
very difference they need
NSU is about relationships. But it’s about so much more. Students and mentors work together to set goals, stay on track and develop critical skills that serve them long beyond their high school years. Time management, planning and organization, self-advocacy, self-care, mental health awareness, as well as adopting an “I can do this” and “I deserve this” mindset, contribute to higher graduation rates and future achievement
NSU collaborates with families, students and
Needham High School guidance counselors to
build one-to-one mentor relationships that help
students set goals, stay on track, self-advocate,
and develop critical skills needed for graduation
and post-secondary achievement. In addition,
• enrichment grants
• SEL skill development
• college application assistance
• post-graduation planning, and more.
How it works
Enrollment begins in the Spring of 8th grade at Pollard Middle School through collaboration between families, students, guidance, and the NSU program director. Mentors are paired with students in freshman year and remain with them for the duration of their high school experience. They meet regularly to discuss everything from course selection to social concerns and consistently work on self-advocacy, goal setting, time management, and additional skill development. In junior and senior years, mentors provide college and other post-secondary planning support.
Students enrolled in Needham Steps Up become part of a smaller, supportive community within Needham High School. With this, along with equity and enrichment grants, they have access to the resources and opportunities readily available to their peers. Since its inception, NSU has worked to improve the high school experience of our mentees to help change the trajectory of their future.