Worcester Academy

Worcester Academy, a private, co-ed 6-12 boarding and day school located in Worcester, MA has a deep and longstanding commitment to public-private partnerships for the purpose of improving equity in educational opportunities.

Worcester Academy utilizes educational and other types of partnerships to advance common objectives to make the world a better place through collaboration, connectivity, relationship building, and shared accomplishments. To read more about their partnerships, please click here.

Neighborhood Scholars Program
Each year, seven students from three local public schools (Grafton Hill, Union Hill, and Vernon Street) attend Worcester Academy for free (1 student in each grade at WA) as part of the Neighborhood Scholars Program.

Summer Scholars Program
The Summer Scholars Program provides a summer educational and enrichment experience for 18 students from three neighborhood schools, Grafton Hill, Union Hill, and Vernon Street. The project-based learning program runs for four weeks at no cost to students and includes math, English and science classes, learning excursions to Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Ecotarium, and free lunches.

Summer Camp Program Scholarships
Summer Camp Program Scholarships allows for up to 30 neighborhood students to attend Basketball Camp, Soccer Camp, Sports Camp, Volleyball Camp, and Worcester Academy Summer Arts Camp at no cost. Students come from four local public schools, Grafton Hill, Roosevelt School, Union Hill, and Vernon Street.

Abaarso Tech
Worcester Academy has a partnership with Abaarso Tech, a school located in Somaliland, in the Horn of Africa.  Abaarso Tech was founded by Worcester Academy alumnus and former investment banker executive Jonathan Starr ’94 as an innovative way to address poverty and development issues in the region. Worcester Academy, with additional support from its donors, sponsors one student each year to attend school at WA.  The school has similarly sponsored students from Haiti in years past. Worcester Academy maintains additional sister school/exchange relationships & partnerships with the Haderslev Katedralskole in Denmark, and a primary school in Pinghu city in Zhejiang, China, among others.

Union Hill Library Project
Worcester Academy students took the lead to create a library at Union Hill Elementary by raising $150,000 in monies and gifts in kind, including computers, books, labor, and materials. No library existed at the elementary school at the time the initiative was begun.

Union Hill Playground Project
Worcester Academy students, staff, and faculty joined volunteers from throughout the city to help build a playground at nearby Union Hill Elementary School. The project was a neighborhood collaboration and completed in cooperation with KaBOOM!, the Oak Hill Community Development Corporation and Worcester’s Polar Beverages Corporation.

Building Bridge Diversity Program
Sixth grade students from Worcester Academy have partnered with sixth and seventh grade students from Union Hill Elementary School, a neighborhood public school in Worcester.  With the help and guidance of WA Upper School diversity leaders, these students meet five times a year to learn from one another, create cross-cultural connections and empower all participants to stand up and speak out.   The program aims to help empower the students to embrace themselves as individuals and to think more critically about their peer groups.  

Worcester Education Roundtable
In support of Worcester Public Schools, the Worcester Academy Head of School and Director of External Communications sit on the Education Roundtable/Worcester Education Collaborative in the city of Worcester.  The Worcester Education Collaborative works to ensure students are given opportunities to succeed at high levels and that they acquire the skills and knowledge to master the challenges of the 21st century.  The Education Roundtable is a quarterly gathering of those with a vested interest in education and an interest in contributing to problem solving.  The Head of School also participates in the Neighborhood Health Initiative, coordinated through the economic development arm of the city government, while the Director of External Communications sits on the Oak Hill Community Development Corporation Board.

Afternoon Tunes Program
The Afternoon Tunes program is a music outreach initiative of All Saints Episcopal Church in Worcester, MA.  The program offers free, private music lessons to over 30 Worcester children.   The program meets every Friday during the school year from 4-6pm. Worcester Academy students volunteer throughout the year as teachers and leaders for this program.

Big Brother, Big Sister Programs
Worcester Academy students participate in a Big Brother-Big Sister program at the Union Hill School, as well as tutor, read to, and recreate with Union Hill students who are there after school.

Boys and Girls Club
The Worcester Academy Boys Varsity Basketball team partners with The Boys and Girls Club by providing basketball instruction, tutoring, and pizza parties.  In the past, the team partnered with nearby Worcester East Middle School students.

St. John’s Church Ascension Campus
The Worcester Academy Boys Varsity Soccer Team, Varsity Swim Team, Girls Varsity Volleyball, and Varsity Tennis Team spend time in the afternoon at St. John’s Church Ascension Campus where the church runs an afterschool program for neighborhood youths. Players from each of the teams, along with coaches, tutor students (Grades 2-6) in math, English, and reading, and running games and activities at Ascension.

Greater Worcester Community Foundation
Worcester Academy continues to have students serve the community by participating in grant making committees with the Greater Worcester Community Foundation’s Youth for Community Involvement. 

Worcester City Council
In 2012, the city of Worcester formed its first-ever Youth Council to advise the Worcester City Council and other municipal groups about youth concerns and ideas.  A Worcester Academy student was both a founding and current member.

Free Theater Performances
Neighborhood elementary and middle schools are invited to special daytime play performances in Worcester Academy’s Warner Theater at no charge.



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