Academic Success and Mentoring

Working in partnership with the New Haven Public Schools, Yale faculty, staff, and students are actively engaged in a variety of programming that complements the instruction students receive during the school day. The EVOLUTIONS program at the Peabody Museum offers high school students an afterschool enrichment opportunity that focuses on enhancing scientific literacy and college preparation. Splash at Yale brings local middle and high school students to Yale University for one day of unlimited learning with Yale graduate and undergraduate students. Participants take classes in a variety of both conventional and unconventional subjects and are empowered to find what they love to learn and discover new career opportunities.

Academic Success and Mentoring Programs

Academic Yale College Courses

Qualified New Haven public high school juniors and seniors, who have been selected by their schools, can enroll in Yale academic courses. Tuition is covered for participating students, who are responsible only for the cost of textbooks and other course materials. This program provides an opportunity for high school students to experience a collegiate academic setting and earn credits that may then be transferred to the college of their choice following high school graduation. 

Co-Op After School

Dwight Hall at Yale, in partnership with Cooperative Arts & Humanitites High School, provides a free, innovative after-school program for hundreds of high school students in a supportive, nurturing, and safe environment. Co-Op After School leaders work closely with administrators, counselors, and school-day instructors to provide a wide range of offerings that meet the needs of New Haven high school students.

Dwight Hall at Yale, Center for Public Service and Social Justice

Dwight Hall at Yale, Center for Public Service and Social Justice, currently supports 85 student-led member groups, 29 programs and fellowships, and 4,100 volunteers who contribute 85,449 hours of service each year. Dwight Hall students have multiple opportunities to tutoring, mentoring, program coordination, leadership development, and advocacy.


The Yale Peabody EVOLUTIONS Program (EVOking Learning and Understanding Through Investigations of the Natural Sciences) engages high-school students in informal learning and work opportunities throughout all four years of high school. Through weekly classes, monthly events, and field trips, EVOLUTIONS is designed to increase science literacy, provide college preparation, develop career awareness, and promote transferable skill development. Each year, EVOLUTIONS students produce an exhibition that is installed in the museum and work as science interpreters through the SciCORPS youth employment program—a select group of EVOLUTIONS students are also offered paid internships in Yale science laboratories.

Homework Helpline

During the pandemic, the Office of New Haven Affairs, Dwight Hall at Yale, and the NHPS Office of Youth, Family, and Community Engagement created an after-hours support helpline for students in grades K–12 who are having difficulties with homework. The program was available during the week on Zoom from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. Yale students volunteered to provide support for these students.

Jones-Zimmerman Academic Mentoring Program

The Jones-Zimmermann Academic Program creates relationships between Yale sophomores and New Haven public school sixth graders in an after school mentoring program. These relationships last for three years, or until graduation from Yale/8th grade. 

Marshall-Brennan Constitutional Literacy Project

The Marshall-Brennan Constitutional Literacy Project is a collaborative teaching program that sends law students into local public high schools to teach constitutional law. Participants in this student-run organization also have the opportunity to coach their students in a national moot-court competition, the first round of which is run by the Yale chapter in New Haven.

New Haven Promise

Yale is a founding and primary sponsor of New Haven Promise, the only scholarship, support and career preparation program of its kind in the national Promise movement. Promise provides scholarships and paid internships for New Haven residents who are graduates of New Haven public schools and selected charter schools. Students who live in the city and meet certain achievement, attendance, community service, and disciplinary requirements are eligible for up to full tuition for in-state public colleges or a partial scholarship for in-state private colleges. Since the program’s inception, more than 2,300 New Haven students have pursued higher education with a Promise scholarship. 

New Haven REACH

New Haven REACH is a Yale undergraduate organization that pairs New Haven high school juniors (in the spring) and seniors (in the fall) with Yale students to support and guide them through the college application process, one-on-one, for about one hour per week. REACH mentees also have access to organization-wide programming. REACH was founded by graduates of Wilbur Cross High School, and its purpose is to help New Haven youth access the higher education best suited to their dreams, potential, and ambitions. 

New Haven Reads
Founded to share the joy and power of reading, New Haven Reads provides free weekly tutoring to students across the Greater New Haven area and distributes tens of thousands free books to individuals, families, teachers, and organizations each year. Programs are hosted at three different locations in New Haven, two of which are Yale-donated spaces. Additionally, Yale sponsors up to 20 tutors every year to ensure that every aspiring reader can receive at least one hour of one-on-one instruction each week with support from a dedicated tutor. 
New Haven Science Fair

The annual New Haven Science Fair offers mentoring for students and professional development for teachers on investigative hands-on science-fair projects that promote scientific skills and research communication. More than 8,000 New Haven students and 43 schools participate annually, utilizing more than 160 volunteers for mentoring and judging. Yale community members make up over 80 percent of the judges and mentors in the program.

New Haven Urban Debate League

The New Haven Urban Debate League (UDL) promotes debate and public-speaking skills in New Haven public schools. Coaches work weekly with teams in 18 New Haven public middle and high schools, focusing on a different topic each month. Students learn the rules of parliamentary debate and compete in regular district-wide tournaments held on Yale’s campus. Students also have the opportunity to travel outside of New Haven for tournaments.


PALS is a tutoring and mentoring program for New Haven area students. At PALS, Yale undergraduate mentors make learning fun through educational games and interactive activities that develop children’s content knowledge and skills. Tutors and children meet on Saturdays throughout the year.

Quarantine Tutors

During the pandemic, Yale undergraduates and graduate students served as virtual tutors for small groups of K–8 students who were required to quarantine. Each Yale student was assigned to a New Haven Public Schools certified teacher, who provided guidance and materials.

Refugee and Immigrant Student Education

Refugee and Immigrant Student Education (RISE) is a Yale organization that seeks to connect and engage with New Haven’s refugee and immigrant communities. Tutors work with refugee and immigrant students in schools and homes each week to foster community and civic engagement. RISE also hosts monthly community events, including a picnic, spoken word poetry performances, and an annual multicultural festival.

Shafer Family Summer School Scholarships for Yale University Summer Session

Shafer Scholars are New Haven high school juniors nominated by their high school guidance counselors to enroll in a five-week Yale Summer Session program in the summer between their junior and senior years. A scholarship from the Shafer family of New Haven provides full tuition for two courses, room and board, a book allowance, and a stipend for each student. Students take Yale College courses in the company of college students and are able to earn college credits. Shafer Scholars live on campus in one of Yale’s residential colleges for the duration of their program and have the opportunity to participate in co-curricular, recreational, and social programs with students from other high schools and colleges from across the country.

Squash Haven

Squash Haven is a year-round enrichment program which uses the sport of squash, in combination with academic tutoring, literacy development, fitness education, community service, college access, and career development to empower and make a lasting difference in the lives of New Haven young people. This free program works intensively with students and families for as long as 14 years between the ages of 10 and 24. 80 percent of team members attend top-100 colleges and universities, and 50 percent of team members play squash in college.

Stem Mentors

STEM Mentors is a graduate student organization that serves to prepare and encourage young students to pursue STEM in college and in their careers. STEM Mentors organizes college-essay-writing workshops, college Q&A sessions, and career fairs to help expose students to the exciting world of STEM.

Urban Improvement Corps

Established in 1968, the Urban Improvement Corps provides one-on-one mentoring and tutoring to students in the New Haven area. Tutoring occurs after school weekly at the Afro-American Cultural Center at Yale. The program also provides supplemental classes on the weekends for students interested in creative writing, SAT/ACT practice, computer science, and music composition.

Yale Education Tutoring Initiative

The Yale Education Tutoring Initiative (YETI) is a free online tutoring program for New Haven public middle and high school students. Admitted students are matched with an undergraduate or graduate student tutor who helps support their work in one or several school subjects. 

Yale Reading Corps

Through Yale Reading Corps, Yale undergraduate and graduate students serve as reading tutors and mentors at New Haven Reads. New Haven Reads, founded to “share the joy and power of reading,” increases the literacy skills of children to empower their academic success by providing individually tailored one-on-one after-school tutoring, educational family support, and a community book bank. The Yale Reading Corps also places Yale undergraduate and graduate students as teaching assistants in classrooms at the Wexler-Grant Community School in New Haven. Fully integrated into the educational environment, the Yale students support teachers’ activities by helping prepare class materials or working with individuals or small groups of students. In addition, the program supports the school’s literacy efforts by sponsoring two book fairs, allowing students to expand their home libraries.

Yale University on iTunes U

Yale University has a wide array of podcasts available from faculty, alumni, and distinguished visitors Topics include arts and humanities, science and engineering, health and medicine, the environment, as well as other areas of interest.

Yale University President's Public Service Fellowship

Established in 1994, the President’s Public Service Fellowship (PPSF) provides full funding for up to 35 Yale students to work full-time with public sector and nonprofit organizations in New Haven each summer. PPSF has created a legacy of current Yale students and recent graduates who have a sophisticated view of community development and remain active in community building in New Haven and other cities. To date, more than 900 Yale undergraduate, graduate, and professional-school students have contributed more than 380,000 hours of community service to local organizations serving New Haven residents through this program.

Yale YouTube Channel

The Yale University YouTube channel supplies a variety of videos to the viewing public. Covering anything from speeches and course lectures to videos made about happenings on campus, the Yale YouTube channel is a free way to experience all that Yale has to offer.