GARDEN CITY, N.Y. (May 2023) – FCA’s Ladders to Success Program proudly congratulates Nassau County Community College (NCCC) student Nataly Yanza. A Hempstead resident, Nataly has been awarded the 2023 Norman R. McConney, Jr. Award for Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) Student Excellence. The award celebrates EOP students who have overcome significant obstacles to achieve their educational and professional goals.
Prior to enrolling at NCCC, Nataly participated in FCA’s Ladders to Success program, which prepares identified high school students in mathematics, algebra, reading and English to attain the placement test scores they need to avoid remedial classes and immediately begin taking credit-bearing classes at the college of their choice.
Ladders to Success made numerous valuable services available to Nataly, including mentoring and counseling, tutoring for the ACCUPLACER college-level course placement test, career readiness and vocational planning services, financial aid and FAFSA application assistance, and guidance throughout the college application process from start to finish. In addition, Ladders to Success holds workshops on dealing with anxieties, mindfulness, bullying, cultural diversity, and more.
“Nataly is a excellent example of FCA’s Ladders To Success program,” said FCA’s Erica Schifano, LCSW, Assistant Vice President, Family Support. “She showed the aptitude, the motivation and desire to attend college. At FCA she was able to work with advisors, mentors and tutors that helped her navigate the complex application and testing processes prior to enrollment. We are thrilled to hear she now has plans to earn a master’s degree and pursue a career as a social worker.”
A ceremony hosted by SUNY Chancellor John B. King, Jr. took place recently to honor Nataly and other award recipients from across SUNY’s 64 campuses. Chancellor King noted that he is continuously awed and inspired by the dedicated, hardworking EOP students. “EOP is a ticket to upward mobility for New York students, which is why I am honored to recognize these students who stand as role models demonstrating what is possible,” said King.
“The very idea of a college career was challenging to me,” explained Nataly. “The Ladders to Success program gave me the encouragement and support I needed to move forward one step at a time and overcome my reticence. With the support of Ladders to Success and the EOP Program, I was able to find a sense of comfort that allowed me to truly experience and appreciate a lot of growth and positive changes during my time at the college.” Nataly is looking to obtain a master’s degree in social work.
Nataly has consistently demonstrated a commitment to excellence in the classroom along with her involvement with the Caribbean Student Organization (CSO) since her freshman year and has served as the vice president of the organization.