67 Mentors And Students Celebrated At Inaugural ‘The Key Awards’ Ceremony

May 30, 2024

On Wednesday, May 28, 2024, New York City Public Schools (NYCPS) honored 67 mentors and their mentees from 24 schools at the inaugural ceremony for ‘The Key Awards’ at the United Palace Theatre.

This cohort of Key Award winners includes mentors from various community-based organizations, corporate partners, and NYCPS educators who are dedicated to selflessly investing their time and wisdom. Awards were also given to the students who have thrived and elevated their lives through this invaluable support. This recognition serves to remind our young people that they are on the right track, that the mentoring they have received is working, that their progress is noticed, and that they matter.

“This collaboration between city agencies, community-based organizations, and businesses showcases what happens when people come together and focus their collective efforts on mentoring’s ability to unlock possibilities,” says Schools Chancellor David C. Banks. “Mentorship contributes to strong, safe schools by guiding youth towards being self-affirmed individuals. When we invest in our young people, we empower the next generation of leaders and changemakers.”

Created by Project PIVOT, Chancellor Banks’ initiative to address school and community safety through partnering schools with community-based organizations, ‘The Key Awards’ were created as part of a partnership between NYCPS, NYC Department of Youth & Community Development, NYPD Explorers, Youth Probation, NYC Service, and Urban Village Mentoring. The evening’s awardees were selected by an independent committee from pools of candidates who were nominated by NYCPS staff and students.


Focused on the positive aspects of New Yorkers helping New Yorkers and mentorship’s life changing effects for youth across our city, this special evening underscored the importance of mentorship in fostering growth, resilience, and achievement in our communities. The ceremony was hosted by comedian MESHELLE and featured remarks about from Schools Chancellor David C. Banks. Presenters included Deputy Chancellor Kenita Lloyd, Department of Youth and Community Development Keith Howard, and other leadership from NYCPS and partnering organizations. Performances from Micah Wong, Pat McLaughlin, Robert Earl “Kool” Bell of Kool & The Gang fame, and NYCPS students served as entertainment throughout the evening.

Photo credit: New York City Public Schools (NYCPS)



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One Comment

  1. So proud of what you all accomplished. Especially proud of my son David Personette for winning this prestigious award.

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