Giving Kids the Advantage

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February is Black History Month

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"Black History Month is a time to celebrate the fullness of African American history and culture, but that cannot be contained in one month alone. As the world's largest African American museum, we have a responsibility to humanize history and objects through the lives, tragedies, and triumphs of everyday people. This February, we celebrate the theme of Black health and wellness by creating a space that highlights Black pioneers' trailblazing contributions to Western medicine, addresses health disparities facing our communities, and encourages healing through education." - Kevin Young Andrew W. Mellon Director, National Museum of African American History & Culture.

Here's a great timeline of events showing trailblazers who broke barriers and shattered stereotypes — and went on to conduct research, discover treatments and provide leadership that improved the health of millions.

Thank you Business for Good Foundation™

Thank you to the Business for Good Foundation™ for their generous donation to our organization. Their donation will help us to keep the the mission moving forward. We are always humbled when our community steps in to help us.

This amazing organization is a team of motivated do-gooders who believe that equity is the key to a brighter future. They believe in the power of community, and that no challenge is insurmountable—as long as they work hard, work thoughtfully, and work together.

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Photo Captions: (Business for Good Foundation™ presents check to 15-LOVE staff and board members.)

15-LOVE College-Prep Participants Make the Most of Winward Academy Courses

In last month's newsletter, we shared with you that our Excellence kids are preparing for the college entry process with help from an e-learning online platform - Winward Academy. This is made possible through a partnership between the USTA Foundation and Winward Academy that offered this experience to students in 30 chapters around the country. This interactive online platform provides students with access to the skills and content knowledge that will help build them up for future opportunities. Courses range from English, Math, Science, Reading, and Writing as well as SAT/ACT prep courses.

"We are happy to see and hear the educational impact Winward Academy is having on our participants," said 15-LOVE Education Director Maxine Brisport. "When I review this month's report, I am extremely proud of 15-LOVE for obtaining the recognition of Most Activite of the NJTL Chapters, as well as having students being recognized for Most Growth and Most Activity (Completed Lessons).

15-LOVE stood alone in the area of Most Hints. Using ‘hints’ is described as the most beneficial tool to aid in academic growth. Growth occurs when students write themselves problem-solving hints after a missed question. Four of our participants were keen to share how the new system has had an impact on their learning so far.

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Jenifer Lalman - 9th grader at Schenectady High School

I started using Winward Academy towards the end of October 2021, and have been using it ever since. During those 4 months I’ve done a variety of different lessons in English and Math. Sometimes doing lessons once or twice a week can seem tedious, but it pays off. I definitely see a difference in my work. My grammar and punctuation has improved in essays or basic writing. As well as remembering how to do past algebraic equations that I learned in online last school year. I didn’t really understand it then, but now, I do. 


I’m currently in the algebra fundamentals section of the math lessons, which is probably my favorite because it’s easy to understand and helps with what I’m currently learning in school.


I try to do about two lessons a week to get a good hour or two on the website. With putting in all this time, I’m expecting to learn new things, while revising what I’ve learned in the past. I don’t want to just do a lesson and get it over with, I want to actually understand and retain what I’m learning.


My parents think it’s great because it’s helping me advance in my own schoolwork, as well as getting ready for big exams like the SAT and ACT.  


Winward Academy has helped me have more clarity and confidence in my personal schoolwork, and feel at an advantage.

Photo caption: (Jenifer Lalman in class at Schenectady High School. )


Millee Modasra - 11th grader at Niskayuna High School

Since I am a senior in high school, I used Winward Academy primarily for the “College Knowledge” section for help with the college application process. When I started to use Winward Academy, I was also fairly new to the application process and was lost in many aspects. My main worry was starting my college essay as I was not sure what to write my essay about, let alone how to tell the story I wanted my colleges to know about. The numerous videos on various students essays came to be extremely helpful in terms of different writing styles to attempt, sentence structure, and language/tone and how to portray it properly. Each video breaks down the essay example, pointing out things that the student did really well that helped them get into the college that they applied to. At the end of each video was a summary of the key points of the certain essay being talked about. Once I figured out what I was going to be writing my college essay on, all of these tips and pointers were really helpful for me in terms of having some idea on how to start my essay.


Other videos that were very helpful under the “Master the Writing Section” were the “Why Examples” for specific colleges that ask why you are applying to that college. One example was actually for Syracuse University which was also one of the colleges I applied to. Being able to read an example for Syracuse really helped me gain an understanding on what exactly colleges are looking for when they ask us why we are applying to them. Overall, all of these videos really helped me overcome the biggest barrier I encountered during the college application process, and I felt very relieved once I knew I had these resources available to help me.

Photo caption: (l-r: Millee poses with her sisters Anajalee & Roshnee at 15-LOVE)

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Mohamed Shahabuddeen - 11th grader at Schenectady High School

I am a junior at Schenectady High School and I find Winward Academy to be very useful. I have been using Winward for a few months now and it has helped me out a lot. I practice on Winward a few times a week for 1 to 2 hours. I find the lessons in English are the most helpful, for me. They contain lessons on specific grammar rules and punctuation rules I have never learned before or have forgotten. I have already taken both the ACT and SAT practice tests and I don’t think I would have scored as much without help from Winward Academy. I will continue to learn from Winward until I take the actual test, but I hope to learn as much as I can until then.

Photo caption: (Mohamed Shahabuddeen at Michigan Ave Tennis Courts.)


Mohamed Sayed Shahabuddeen - 9th grader at Schenectady High School

My experience with Winward Academy has been fantastic so far. It is helping me to improve in subject that I need help in. The courses that I am studying are English and Math. Math is the class the I enjoy studying the most. I try to go on at least once a week for at least one hour. I hope to gain expertise in writing sentences with proper punctuation and grammar. My parents think it is an amazing program giving kids the opportunity to learn more.

Photo caption: (l-r Mohamed Shahabuddeen with his brother Mohamed, sister Eliza and 15-LOVE Executive Director Amber Marino during the 10 BLOCKS project at Westland Hills Tennis Courts.)

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Planning for the 30th Annual Fore Love & Money at Schuyler Meadows Country Club has begun.

There are several sponsorship opportunities available and every sponsor level helps us fulfill our mission of giving kids the advantage.

Kindly send Cindy Lyons a message, if you or your company is interested or would like more information.

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Thank you for considering a gift to 15-LOVE! 15-LOVE (Capital Region Youth Tennis Foundation, Inc) is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization. All purchases made from this list for the organization are tax-deductible to the extent permissible by law.


You can also select 15-LOVE on Amazon Smile to receive a small percentage of any purchases you make through Amazon when you go to:!


Thank you for all your support!

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