College Access and Youth Development

Making college a reality for young people in public housing and surrounding neighborhoods
What is College Access?

Since our launch, the College Access Program has helped hundreds of low-income students and their families prepare for the SAT, apply to and enroll in college, secure financial aid, and transition successfully from high school to college.

Our program includes direct instruction, guided group work, independent practice, individual counseling and hands-on activities designed to make classes engaging and fun.

Who is Eligible?

Our services are free and are targeted to high school students living in western Queens. Our program begins in the 10th grade running through senior year and beyond.

Registration occurs every spring and summer. Our program works best when students enroll during their sophomore year, but they can join at the start of their junior and senior years as well.


Sessions take place virtually and/or at our Youth Center located at 13-11 40th Ave, Long Island City, NY 11101. A breakdown of our program can be found below:

  • Sophomore Skills A three-month PSAT preparation program that meets once a week for two hours of instruction and tutoring. This course is designed to open up the college discussion and explore college/career paths available.
  • Junior Year/SAT Prep A program offering 16 comprehensive SAT preparation classes plus various workshops designed to guide students through their college lists and resumes. Students finishing the program are ready to begin the application process in the fall.
  • College Prep for Seniors A ten-month program meeting 2 hours each week and designed to pave the road to college. We work on college essays, applications, and securing financial aid. We also discuss what to expect from college life and how to balance responsibilities.

College Access Contact

To learn more about Urban Upbound’s College Access Program or learn how to apply, call our College Access Center at 718.571.9167, email our Program Manager, Quneetsha, at

About Youth Development

Urban Upbound strives to make a positive impact on the youth we serve by providing education, training and guidance to ensure a successful and fulfilling future. We empower our youth through workforce development, relational skill building, educational resources, and financial guidance. Our focus is on impact and seizing the opportunity and potential in each of our participants.

Urban Upound’s Youth Pathways Office is located at 13-11 40th Ave, Long Island City, NY 11101 and is open Monday to Friday from 9am- 5pm.

Our Services

Our youth development program is different from standard employment programs in that it focuses specifically on individuals between the ages of 18 and 24, emphasizes the completion of educational milestones, and offers an individualized and flexible approach to finding employment. We are able to assist youth with the following:

  • Exploration We work with youth who are unsure what path to choose and help them to establish long and short term success goals. Youth learn about various career paths and explore options that can be made available to them.
  • Training We help create a path for those who know which career they want to pursue by providing training in fields such as security, health care, administration, culinary arts, and customer service..
  • Career Preparation Youth have the opportunity to participate in networking fairs and recruitment activities. We help youth write resumes, prepare for interviews, develop soft skills needed in the workplace, and more.
  • Education We offer individualized counseling to assist youth looking to achieve a HSE/GED and we have a College Access program for those looking to continue their education.
  • Job Retention Once employment is secured, our staff works closely with participants to ensure continued employment. We develop a list of key milestones and offer incentives like gift cards, Metro Cards and raffles for reaching them.
  • Financial Counseling Youth have the opportunity to meet confidentially with a financial counselor to discuss financial goals such as start saving, reduce debt and build credit. They learn how to create and maintain a budget, and how to open a safe and affordable bank account.


To learn more about our youth development program, call us at 718.571.9512 , send us an email at