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Pathways partnership connects Gaels with local students

Athletics and Recreation and its student-led Varsity Leadership Council are partnering with Pathways to Education to create mentorship and educational opportunities for local high school students.
A new partnership between Athletics and Recreation, the Varsity Leadership Council and Pathways to Education will create mentorship and educational opportunities for local high school students. From left: Allyson Tonelli, Assistant Manager, Marketing, Communications and Events - Queen's Athletics; Roger Romero, Interim Coordinator, Tutoring and Mentoring Programs – Pathways to Education; Andrea Priamo, Varsity Leadership Co-President - Women's Basketball; Leslie Dal Cin, Executive Director, Athletics and Recreation. 

Queen’s Athletics and Recreation and its student-led Varsity Leadership Council are partnering with Pathways to Education to create mentorship and educational opportunities for local high school students.

“These new initiatives in Athletics and Recreation build on the university’s longstanding outreach activities with local community groups,” says Vice-Provost and Dean of Student Affairs Ann Tierney. “We are particularly excited about the engagement of our student-athletes as role models who can help area youth see that post-secondary education is possible.” 

The partnership will see the Varsity Leadership Council host a group of Pathways students at Queen’s for a day to participate in activities, have lunch, and talk about what university and life as a student-athlete are like. Queen’s will also host selected Pathways participants at several home games over the course of the year, and donate gently-used equipment to Pathways each year, allowing more youth the opportunity to be involved in sport and physical activity. In addition, a male and female Pathways student will be recognized with Academic All-Star Awards for success both in the classroom and on the field of play.

“When it comes to the Pathways organization, we share many of the same values around the importance of education, wellness and physical activity as contributors to personal and professional success,” says Leslie Dal Cin, Executive Director, Queen’s Athletics and Recreation. “Not only can our student-athletes act as mentors for these high school students, they can learn from them about goal setting, resilience and overcoming obstacles.”

Pathways to Education is a national organization that aims to break the cycle of poverty through education, and provides the resources and network of support for our students to graduate from high school and build the foundation for a successful future. The Kingston Pathways to Education program is run by Kingston Community Health Centres (KCHC).

“We are thrilled with our partnership with Queen’s Athletics and Recreation. Access to recreation and positive role models are critical to healthy outcomes for our youth,” says Roger Romero, Interim Coordinator, Tutoring and Mentoring Programs, Pathways to Education. “Queen's University is a long-standing academic partner of KCHC Pathways to Education. Many of our students choose Queen's as their post-secondary pathway, and this is a wonderful opportunity for our students to experience everything Queen’s University can offer.”

The Division of Student Affairs has been working with Pathways programs across Ontario for many years, visiting with youth, helping with university applications, offering free transportation to Fall Preview and summer orientation programs, and providing renewable entrance awards for Pathways participants. The university has developed a new first generation admission policy, and hiring is now underway for a new full-time GTA-based recruiter who will focus on students from under-represented populations, including racialized and first generation students. 

For more information about Pathways to Education, visit the website.