Two Everett High School (EHS) graduates are launching a mentoring program designed to “empower students to recognize their potential and giving them a network to succeed” by connecting them with members of the community.
Azeb Freitas and Faith Pinho unveiled their plans to for the “Crimson Community” at the final School Committee meeting of the year in June. The two, who were introduced by Ward 5 member Marcony Almeida-Barros, spoke eloquently and passionately about their experiences as EHS students and how beneficial it is to have strong mentors help you prepare for college and/or the workplace.
“This is exactly the type of program that enhances and empowers our students to recognize their full potential,” says Almeida-Barros. “That’s why I was honored to sponsor this item at our last School Committee meeting and bring Azeb and Faith to present their fantastic initiative.”
According to Freitas and Pinho, the Crimson Community will serve as an “extra layer of support for students, to supplement the excellent work provided by EHS guidance counselors, teachers, and administrators.” The network of mentors will include “EHS alumni, residents, and anyone who demonstrates a loyalty to the city.”
The Crimson Community will take shape in the coming months. Freitas and Pinho are working with administrators to launch a six-month pilot program in January of 2020, starting with 15 mentorship pairs that will be required to meet in person once a month and communicate at least once a week. A research-based curriculum and detailed guidelines and policies will be established, although mentors will be encouraged to mold mentorships to the specific needs of individual students.
Freitas, a 2013 EHS graduate and 2017 graduate of Simmons College, is an executive team coordinator at the executive search firm Isaacson Miller in Boston. She is an instructor for the EHS Percussion Ensemble, following active participation in several EHS musical groups as a student. She also serves on the boards of Habesha Networks’ Boston chapter and the local homelessness advocacy group Material Aid and Advocacy Program.
Pinho is a journalist with The Daily Pilot, a community newspaper of the Los Angeles Times based in Orange County, Calif. A 2014 graduate of EHS, Faith earned a degree in Journalism and Politics from Washington and Lee University in 2018. She serves as a consultant for the the educational nonprofit Citadel Foundation for Kids and the Rise Academy learning center in Compton. Twelve years after learning the saxophone at Everett Public Schools, Faith plays with the Long Beach Community Band.
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