In 2009, in collaboration with Henry Street Settlement (HSS), CUCE-NYC successfully submitted and received funding to implement the CAUSE project. CAUSE is a three year project, currently in its second year, that strives to increase teens' knowledge, interest, and attitude towards science, with a focus on the environment and community engagement.
Each year, a different cohort of 7 to 10 High School juniors are selected from low-income communities after completing rigorous yet stimulating application process.
Each CAUSE student is given the task of designing individualized research projects and is provided with hands-on advising for their projects from program leaders as well as Cornell Professors and Graduate Students. The highlight of the program comes as students attend the Cornell Summer College program on the Ithaca campus and participate in an environmental science course, receive mentorship on their research, have access to the Cornell libraries, and get a taste of college life.
"The CAUSE Project as a whole has been a great experience. It has been both fun and challenging at times. I have learned a lot from both Alex and Ritu [program leaders] and I am sure next years [sic] participants will learn just as much. The CAUSE project has helped me increase my knowledge about the environment, through Alex and the Cornell course. It actually helped me realize how much of an interest I had in environmental studies. My research project also helped me learn more. I had a chance to sharpen my report writing skills with the help of Alex. The CAUSE Project also helped me make new firends who will now be in my life for a very long time.
Cornell University Summer College, the other aspect of CAUSE (the first being research projects), was really fun even though it was difficult. The class taught me a lot about the history behind environmental studies. It taught me about some things I already knew and about completely new things. Summer College really showed me how it would [be] like living in a dorm and on a college campus. I think I am much more prepared for college than I was before." -Tiquasha, 2009-2010 CAUSE Program Participant
"The C.A.U.S.E. Project allowed me to become aware of our environment by opening my eyes to a whole new world of environmental issues that concern our community. The majority of people are under the misconception that New Yorkers, especially those in the city, do not care about the environment they inhabit. I am a proud New Yorker who loves my city and want to ensure that it will preserve for future generations to marvel at. C.A.U.S.E. has also allowed its members to achieve this through creating original research projects surrounding environmental issues within the city. My project was on the impact of recycling within the fast food and restaurant industry. It was an opportunity to have full freedom about what you researched. It gave me a boost of self confidence that I can act as a leader on an original idea and gain helpful insights into a cause." - Marjike Ybera, 2009-2019 Program Participant
CAUSE Program in the news: http://www.news.cornell.edu/stories/Oct11/NYCCAUSE.html
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