YMWIC March 2024 Newsletter

YMWIC Scholars Embody Excellence

Excellence isn't a one-week or one-year ideal. It is constant.

~ Michael Jordan


Greetings, YMWIC Supporters:

Excellence is ingrained in YMWIC Core Values and woven into all practices. It is a mindset and integral component of our Mission. Our aim is to foster this mindset, not only by Scholars and staff but also by volunteers and our families.

Excellence was certainly on display at the YMWIC 13th Annual Science Expo last month. During the process of completing their science experiments, Scholars develop and/or refine research skills preparing them for college and careers.

During this Women’s History Month, we salute our girls and young women who are YMWIC members. Encouraging women to pursue STEM careers and increasing their presence in STEM fields and other professions are initiatives YMWIC is proud to champion.

Several important events take place in the final third of the Program Year. They are the NSBE (National Society of Black Engineers) MathCounts Competition, and the Annual College Tour this month; and the most popular event, our 14th Annual Scholarship and Awards Banquet on May 23. The programming and success of our organization cannot take place without the support of you, our valued Partners.

We invite and encourage you to consider investing your time and talent and/or making a financial contribution to YMWIC. I am personally available to speak with you; simply contact me to discuss becoming a valued YMWIC partner. We would love to have you join us in our pursuit of excellence.

Richard Roberts, III

(610) 340-2844



To empower and prepare economically disadvantaged and historically underrepresented youth to excel and become leaders in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) careers through a structured and rigorous curriculum, academic tutoring, mentoring and financial assistance programs, accomplished by leveraging alliances with K-12 school districts, universities, corporations, and our committed partners.


We Believe we can significantly impact the future of our youth through education and extraordinary leadership.

We Value Commitment, Honor and Accountability and through these principles we are dedicated to the tradition of excellence in serving our youth, our partners and our community.

We Promote Engagement and Collaboration by treating all people with respect and sincerity to create an environment of openness where shared success can be achieved. 

We Demonstrate Quality by working efficiently and effectively to continuously improve our programs for the benefit of our Scholars.

YMWIC 2023 Promo Video

We are Grateful for Your Generous Support

We are pleased to announce that we have received financial support from TC Energy for our Workplace Readiness Program. Thank you to the TC Energy Social Impact Team for your generosity; we look forward to an enduring partnership.

We thank the Chick-fil-A Downingtown Team for the generous donation and recognition as your Chick-fil-A Give Back Organization of the Month. A special thank you for the complimentary catering and delicious meal provided for our Celebration of Success Luncheon.

Excellence was on Display at the

YMWIC 13th Annual Science Expo

The YMWIC 13th Annual Science Expo took place on February 24, 2024. Excellence was on display as our Scholars, outfitted in their formal YMWIC uniforms, culminated the Science Projects they had worked diligently to complete since October by presenting their experiments and results to groups consisting of judges, parents, family members, their peers, and community members. This year’s event took place for the first time on the campus of West Chester University of Pennsylvania where the facilities were much more expansive, allowing for ample presentation and display areas. 

Upon arrival in the morning, YMWIC Partner Volunteers whose roles included Judge, Facilitator, Logistics, IT and Tech, and Data were briefed on their duties for the morning. Read more.

Lincoln University College Tour

The third and final College Tour of the Program Year took place in February. A group of 20 Scholars boarded a bus to Lincoln University, an HBCU (Historically Black College and University) located in Pennsylvania. During the information-gathering session, Scholars were guided on a tour around the campus, observed a class in progress, visited the area where the school's fraternities and sororities met and socialized, and visited the library where there was a special Black History Month display. Scholars had the opportunity to ask the tour guide questions about Lincoln, the campus, admittance requirements, and college life.

After boarding the bus back to West Chester, they joined Mr. Roberts for dinner at Outback Steak House and discussed their impressions about Lincoln University, what they had observed and learned that day, and their plans for college and their careers.

Chick-fil-A Hosts a Celebration of Success Luncheon

On Saturday, March 16, YMWIC Partners, Volunteers, Board Members, families and friends were invited to celebrate the efforts of our Scholars at this year's 13th Annual Science Expo at a Celebration of Success Luncheon. Mr. Fatorma Siafa, Owner/Operator, and Ms. Carmen Boyd, Human Resources Director, from the Chick-fil-A Restaurant in Downingtown, PA, catered a delicious meal at YMWIC Headquarters. Mr. Siafa, a new YMWIC Partner and Chick-fil-A Owner/Operator, selected YMWIC as its March "Chick-fil-A Give Back Organization of the Month," which included the catering of our Celebration of Success Luncheon, a generous donation, tickets to and promotion of YMWIC Foundation at a Philadelphia Union soccer game on March 30. Read more.

Left: Scholars reciting the YMWIC Credo; Center: YMWIC Board Member Maria Zengel, Esq.; Mr. Fatorma Siafa, Owner; and Mr. Richard Roberts, III; Right: Middle School Scholars in the MathCounts SIG with YMWIC STEM Educator, Wanda Allaire

Honor Roll

YMWIC congratulates our Scholars who have worked hard and achieved Distinguished Honor Roll and Honor Roll status for their second marking period or trimester:

Coatesville Chapter: Honor Roll: Walter Calle, Aryan Kumar, Andres Malo, Jasmyne Thomas, Matthew Thomas

Norristown Chapter: Distinguished Honor Roll: Angelena Camack; Dayanis Morales; Honor Roll: Akilah Camack, Emiliano Lopez, Zaire Darden Prioleau, Arely Sanchez Navarro 

Phoenixville Chapter: Honor Roll: Dylan Nichol Berry, Darien Sampson

Upper Darby Chapter: Distinguished Honor Roll: Fatima Afrani, Layee Dukuly, Charlieze Ganges, Maxam Ganges, Anayjah Johnson, Massa Kengo, Christina Kumi, Gianna Kurian, Reem Mamoon, Salimata Sore, Faith Taylor, Taylor Williams, Tyler Williams, Eva Zhao; Honor Roll: Layla Bente, Gideon Dayo, Mohammed Kamara, Linda Osorio, Adrian Shaw

William Penn Chapter: Distinguished Honor Roll: Ibrahim Kamara; Honor Roll: Karter Freeman, Derrick Hitchcock, Jahmere McDuffie, Iyana Miller, Terrence Patterson, Inza Soumaro, Aaliyah Williams

Featured Scholars

Coatesville Chapter: Angie Castillo-Colin is a 7th grade student at Collegium Charter School. This is her first Program Year as a YMWIC member. She stated she wanted to be involved in the Foundation to experience exciting activities and become someone good in this world. She is committed to academics and staying on task so that she will continue earning good grades and having a positive attitude.

In the future, Angie would like to be a Veterinarian, possibly attending West Chester University of Pennsylvania, Temple University, or Penn State University. Angela enjoys playing soccer, reading books, drawing and painting, and planting in the summer.

We are proud to have you as a member of YMWIC, Angie. Continue to work hard, and you will do well.

Norristown Chapter: Julian Hernandez Velazquez is a 7th grade Scholar attending East Norriton Middle School. This is his second Program Year as a YMWIC Scholar. He wants to be involved in the Foundation to help him make self-improvements. He has already seen progress in overcoming his fear of speaking to a large audience. As a member, he finds coding and robotics to be the most fun and looks forward to participating in the workshops.

Julian would like to become a mechanic in the future. In his spare time, he enjoys playing games.

Stay involved in YMWIC, Julian; you have a great future ahead.

Phoenixville Chapter: Savannah Thomas is a 7th grade Scholar at Phoenixville Area Middle School. As an exemplary student, she has been on the Honor Roll while in the 5th and 6th grades and received the Maryanne T. Cox Award. This is Savannah's third year as a YMWIC Scholar; she joined hoping to get a sense of direction and to improve her time management skills. She felt being an active member would also help her continue doing well academically and become a better person. She has found that since joining and keeping her commitments to the Foundation, she has been able to improve her grades. She enjoys the friendships she has developed with other Scholars in the Phoenixville Chapter.

In the future, Savannah would like to study Economics and Finance and attend a prestigious school such as Harvard University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), or Penn State University. As an entrepreneur, she would like to own a business. In her free time, Savannah enjoys playing soccer, basketball, and watching shows on Netflix.

Continue to aim high, Savannah; and work hard to achieve your goals.

Upper Darby Chapter: Zibo Senome-Bridgers, a senior at Upper Darby High School, is enjoying his first Program Year as a YMWIC member. He says that so far, "The YMWIC Program has opened my horizons to career paths I would have never thought of. I have met friends for life and made connections with important people who have made me feel that my path may not be definite but ready for life-changing success." He plans to commit to YMWIC by, "Staying consistent and behaving in a manner that represents a young man in charge of his education." His school accomplishments include Distinguished Honor Roll, Honor Roll, an invitation to join the National Honor Society, and being a member of the National Society of High School Scholars (NSHSS).

Zibo's plans for the future are to become a business owner, studying Business Administration and/or Accounting. Read more.

West Chester Chapter: Sahara Datil, a 4th grade Scholar, attends Rainbow Elementary School. Since joining YMWIC last year, she has become more comfortable speaking in public. She says she also benefits from the Program by learning about Financial Literacy, planning for educational milestones, and making new friends. Sahara enjoys learning about interesting science topics and participating in exciting science activities during workshops.

Sahara's commitments to YMWIC include being respectful and kind to her peers and mentors, as well as completing tasks assigned to her. She will also listen intently and absorb as much new information that she can. Sahara's academic accomplishments include winning a Scholastic Writing Contest about sharks she entered over the summer. In her free time, Sahara enjoys dancing, art, and reading.

Sahara, you have been shining since joining YMWIC. Keep up the great work!


Workshops #9 and #10

In Workshops 9 and 10, Scholars diligently prepared for the Science Expo. They finalized each requirement of their Science Projects to ensure all elements were pristine and polished. Scholars also prepared, practiced, and perfected their presentations.

Workshops #11

Scholars participated in an exciting activity with educators from YMWIC Partner, Da Vinci Science Center, a science museum and national award-winning nonprofit organization. They created Scribbling Machines, which could create drawings. Using pool noodles, felt markers, motors, corks, batteries, tape and rubber bands, Scholars constructed machines that could create art.


Each Scholar completed an electrical circuit to make their Scribbling Machine move and then adjusted the position of the battery, cork, or markers to create different art styles. They decided whether they wanted to try to find the perfect pattern, or create something with several designs and selected color combinations. The Scribbling Machine may have drawn the art, but the Scholars were the artists.

Community Service

Norristown Chapter: Norristown Scholars participated in a Community Service event at Misfit Heroes, an organization that offers assistance for unhoused neighbors in the Norristown community. They prepared care packages which included essential items such as toiletries, hats, scarves and gloves, medical aids, and snack packs. Scholars also sorted clothing for their neighbors in need.

Junior Editors' Reports

Unseen Pioneers: The Impact of Missing Women’s History in Education

by Anailah Lamb Towles -- Coatesville Chapter

In American classrooms, the absence of women's history has been a persistent issue that has limited students' understanding of the diverse contributions of women throughout history. This lack of emphasis on women's history in the curriculum reflects broader societal attitudes and biases that have historically marginalized women's voices and experiences. By overlooking the achievements and struggles of women, students are deprived of a more complete and nuanced understanding of American history and society.

Historically, women's history has been neglected in American classrooms due to a variety of factors. In the early years of the American educational system, curricula were heavily influenced by patriarchal values and traditional gender roles, which often cast women as passive participants in history. Read more.


The Importance of Maintaining the Chesapeake Bay

by Dayanis Morales -- Norristown Chapter

Flowing through six states, the Chesapeake Bay has one of the most economically influential and productive fisheries, mainly oyster harvesting areas, on the East Coast. It is an extensive part of the Atlantic Ocean and the largest estuary (a partially enclosed, coastal water body where fresh water from rivers and streams mixes with salt water from the ocean) in North America, being the third in the world. Many citizens who live near the Chesapeake Bay watershed rely on the bay to provide them with around 500 million pounds of oysters, crabs, and other seafood per year to enjoy and contribute to its state economy. In addition to providing a food source, it also contributes to the watershed’s residents by accommodating them with 75% of filtered drinking water. However, in recent studies and observations, the Chesapeake Bay experienced eutrophication (the process in which a water body becomes overly enriched with nutrients) due to an abundant presence of nitrogen and phosphorus in the water. Read more.

Parent Spotlight

This month, we feature James Coleman, parent of Jaden Coleman. This is their family's second Program Year with the Foundation. James was selected because of his commitment to YMWIC and his consistent and faithful attendance at workshops with Jaden. In addition, he is always an active participant and willing to lend his voice to Parent Workshop conversations. When asked why they selected YMWIC, Mr. Coleman replied, "YMWIC promotes positivity among the students. They teach them the skills to prepare for college at a young age." Since joining, he has observed that Jaden has become much more disciplined in learning and operating within the structure of the organization."

To families and Scholars who are new to YMWIC, Mr. Coleman says, "This organization helps students become future leaders by giving them projects to complete (such as the Science Project) and providing opportunities for them to give back to the community." He adds, "Keep your child in the Program, and watch them grow into something special."

Upcoming Events

YMWIC STEAM & Language Arts Camps

The YMWIC 2024 Summer Camps are exciting, educational, and fun-filled six-week experiences for rising 1st through 8th grade students as of September, who will have great experiences exploring new concepts in math, chemistry, biology, computer science, robotics, language arts, reading, art, and much more!! Camps will take place from June 17th – July 26, 2024 at locations within YMWIC Partner School Districts. There will be weekly field trips; previous trips have included The Franklin Institute, Philadelphia Zoo, Camden’s Adventure Aquarium, and The Academy of Natural Sciences — all included with registration!

The YMWIC STEAM & Language Arts Camp locations are in Coatesville, Norristown, Phoenixville, Upper Darby, and West Chester, PA. Register your Camper by clicking on your desired location below.

Coatesville YMWIC 2024 STEAM & Language Arts Camp

Norristown YMWIC 2024 STEAM & Language Arts Camp

Phoenixville YMWIC 2024 STEAM & Language Arts Camp

Upper Darby YMWIC 2024 STEAM & Language Arts Camp

West Chester YMWIC 2024 STEAM & Language Arts Camp


YMWIC Upward Bound Summer Programs

Young Men and Women In Charge Foundation, Inc., is hosting our 2024 Annual YMWIC Upward Bound Summer Programs for the Upper Darby and Coatesville School Districts. This exceptional Program is a great opportunity for Upper Darby and Coatesville School District students who will be first-generation college students in their families. The six-week experience will enrich, expose, and prepare Scholars for college and provide insight into future careers and employment opportunities. They will experience projects in the arts, entrepreneurship, mentoring, leadership, and the important networking skill of golf. Participants will also enjoy College and Career Readiness activities which include weekly college tours, math, English and Language Arts enrichment, and weekly athletic activities. The Program takes place Monday through Thursday from June 17 – July 25, 2024.

Scholars will participate in college campus tours of six Philadelphia-area colleges and visit Fortune 100 corporations. The Program will end with our very popular and well-attended complimentary buffet dinner recognizing the end of the Upward Bound Summer Program with Scholars and parents at the Penn Oaks Golf Club. Every Upward Bound member who is an Upper Darby School District student will receive a CASH STIPEND. Click here to register for this enriching and life-enhancing opportunity.


YMWIC 14th Annual Scholarship & Awards Banquet

This year, YMWIC will host our 14th Annual Scholarship & Awards Banquet. This exciting event will be held at the Sheraton Valley Forge Hotel in King of Prussia, PA, on Thursday, May 23, 2024. During the Banquet, we showcase our Scholars for their achievements and reward our graduating senior Scholars with the college scholarships they have earned to attend the colleges of their choice. There will be a delicious dinner and an inspiring message from our keynote speaker.

We will also honor industry executives who are champions in supporting YMWIC and our communities with the following Awards:

West Impact Award: ifm efector, inc.

Educational Leadership Award for Secondary Education: Dr. Christina L. Taylor

Educational Leadership Award for Post-Secondary Education: Dr. Brandon J. Mitchell

Community Leadership Award: Mrs. Frances M. Sheehan

Join us as we celebrate our Scholars and Community Leaders and enjoy an evening of fellowship and fun! To register to attend this amazing event or to make a donation, use this link.

To Sponsor this popular event, make a donation, or purchase an ad in our Souvenir Program Booklet, please click here.


YMWIC 11th Annual Scholarship & STEM Golf Classic

Join us on Monday, September 9, 2024, at the fabulous Penn Oaks Golf Club in a Scramble Golf Tournament and Fundraiser to support our Scholarship Program for the Young Men and Women In Charge (YMWIC) Foundation, Inc. You will meet our Scholars, network, and have fun as you help us raise scholarship funds.

Golfers will receive gifts and enjoy an open buffet lunch and an open buffet dinner. There will be prizes for our guests and winners. For non-golfers, please join us for the evening banquet and networking dinner event, which will include a delicious buffet dinner and much more. Click here to register for this eagerly-anticipated event.



Here are key dates for upcoming events planned for the YMWIC 2023-2024 Program Year:

April 27: Robotics Team Competition in Washington, DC

April to May: Scholar Job Shadowing with YMWIC Foundation's Corporate Partners

May 23: YMWIC 14th Annual Scholarship & Awards Banquet at the Sheraton Valley Forge Hotel

June 17 - July 26: Elementary School STEAM & Language Arts Camp, Middle School Science Retreat, and High School Upward Bound Summer Programs

May - August: Summer Internships for YMWIC High School Scholars and Alumni

September 9: YMWIC 11th Annual Scholarship & STEM Golf Classic at Penn Oaks Golf Club

YMWIC is Hiring

YMWIC is a non-profit 501(c3) Pennsylvania Corporation. Our Mission is to empower and prepare economically disadvantaged and historically underrepresented youth to excel and become leaders in STEM careers. We are looking for talented, motivated, and qualified individuals with initiative who are committed to our Mission to competently fill the following roles in the Foundation:

Project Coordinator -- Full-time

STEM Educators -- Part-time

Tutors -- Part-time

Click Here for more information about these positions. If you are interested in applying for a position listed above, please let us know your preference and submit your resume to employment@ymwicfoundation.org. All candidates must have the required clearances: Pennsylvania Child Abuse History Clearance, Pennsylvania State Police Criminal History Clearance, and the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) Criminal History Clearance which is required for all employees and some volunteers.

Volunteers Needed

If you or your organization would like to be a valued volunteer for YMWIC, please use this link. We welcome and appreciate your talents, time, and willingness to work with us!

Follow YMWIC on Facebook and Instagram

Keep up with our Scholars and Program! You can stay on top of what YMWIC Scholars are doing by following us on both of our social media platforms, Instagram and Meta (formerly Facebook). This is a great way to receive constant updates on what’s happening at YMWIC. All you must do is go on your Instagram and/or Meta (Facebook) app and type YMWICscholars. Once you see our logo pop up, click Follow. Drop a Comment to say hello! Welcome to our social media family! Looking forward to seeing you join in on the fun.  

To connect with us online on Meta/Facebook, select this Link! To stay up to date with what’s happening at YMWIC via Instagram, you can select this Link.

Donating to YMWIC

Educational Improvement Tax Credit (EITC): YMWIC Foundation, Inc., is eligible to receive funds from the EITC Program which is administered by Pennsylvania’s Department of Community and Economic Development. We thank those businesses that donate their EITC funding to YMWIC Foundation and encourage others to consider directing funding to our impactful community nonprofit that provides college and career preparation for K-12 students; empowers their families; counseling, financial support and internships for YMWIC college alumni; and enriches our communities through Community Service activities, increasing the number of college graduates, and developing a talented and skilled workforce. Please contact Rick Roberts at (610) 340-2844 if you would like to consider our YMWIC Foundation, Inc., as the recipient of your company's EITC funds.

Thank You for Your Generous Support

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