As members of the Pittsburgh community, SMI Aware and our employees participate in a variety of community activities and projects. One of those community outreach projects is our involvement with and commitment to the Neighborhood Academy.
The Neighborhood Academy is a faith-based, college preparatory, independent school serving grades 6-12. Its mission is to break the cycle of generational poverty by empowering youth and preparing them for college and citizenship. Students follow a rigorous curriculum that initially focuses on helping them catch up with their peers and then provides them with the tools to help them excel.
In addition to a top-notch education, every student receives three meals a day, transportation, career development programs, individual and group counseling, and a supportive environment full of faculty and staff who care. 100% of their seniors are accepted to college, and an average of 75% graduate from college in five years or less, which is well above the national average.
Our CEO, Chris Randall, first learned about The Neighborhood Academy when his former high school lacrosse coach, Reverend Tom Johnson, invited me to come and visit the school. Tom is one of the school’s founders, along with Josephine Moore. Immediately, Chris was impressed by the vision of Tom and Josephine and their commitment to serving and empowering under-served communities in the Pittsburgh area.
Chris went on to join the Board of Directors in August 2020 because he believes in the mission of the Academy and wanted to participate in empowering students to excel and achieve their goals.
In addition to sitting on the Board of the Academy, Chris has looked for ways to involve SMI Aware’s Analysts and staff with the school as we continue to expand our community outreach programs. This fall, SMI Aware Analysts will visit the Academy to speak with students about responsible social media use and share what it is like to have a career in social media discovery and analysis.
Ways to give
The Neighborhood Academy is a private, faith-based school, so it doesn’t have access to charter school funding and is funded primarily through private donations and supporters. Your gift to The Neighborhood Academy helps ensure that each student receives a college preparatory curriculum and a holistic set of programs designed to address issues affecting young people.
You can make a one-time or recurring donation directly to The Neighborhood Academy through their Donation page.
Give through the Pennsylvania Educational Improvement Tax Credit (EITC) Program
The Pennsylvania Educational Improvement Tax Credit Program was created to stimulate and support giving to innovative educational organizations, like The Neighborhood Academy. Qualified businesses and individuals can earn tax credits equal to 75% – 90% of their contributions to approved Educational Improvement Organizations (EIO). The Neighborhood Academy is approved as an EIO and can turn your tax dollars into scholarships for our students.
To learn more, visit the EITC page on the Neighborhood Academy website.
More Ways to Give
Visit the giving page for more ways to support The Neighborhood Academy.
Thanks for taking the time to learn more about The Neighborhood Academy. If you have any questions about the Academy or are interested in getting involved, please reach out to us.