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Three MVCSD scholars win scholarships at MLK Legacy Youth Awards

Three MVCSD scholars win scholarships at MLK Legacy Youth Awards

Three Mount Vernon City School District scholars were given awards at the African American Men of Westchester’s Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Legacy Youth Awards Luncheon on Monday, January 16, 2023.   

Rayanu Adam and Roymichael Brisport, 12th grade students at Mount Vernon STEAM Academy, won the William L. Carter Perseverance Award, which includes a $2,000 scholarship. Mohamadou Alou, 12th grade student at Mount Vernon High School, won the Social Action Award and a $2,000 scholarship. Fourteen total awards were given, ten $2,000 scholarships, and four $2,500 Albertina Bloom Scholarship Grants.   

Rayanu Adam is the Vice President of his class at Mount Vernon STEAM Academy, captain of the varsity track team, and serves as a student school board trustee for the school district. He also serves the community of Mount Vernon and beyond by sorting and giving away food to those in need with the LIFE Progressive Services Group. Additionally, he tutors Hispanic children in the Bronx with the Mexican American Students’ Alliance (MASA) NY Program.  

Adam winning award

“It’s just being the change that you want to see,” said Adam. “It doesn't have to be humongous. It can be just in your community: tutoring, handing out food. Starting from the bottom, and brick by brick it builds up. That to me is fulfilling Dr. King’s vision.”  

As student trustee on the school board, Adam was instrumental in advocating for better-functioning shuttle buses for student-athletes and continues to give students a voice in the Board of Education. He considers this some of the most important work that he has done to serve others. He is also a member of My Brother’s Keeper, which empowers him to commit even more acts of service.   

Roymichael Brisport also won the William L. Carter Perseverance Award. He has worked to improve his community in numerous ways, including interning at the Mount Vernon Neighborhood Health Center. He is a volunteer for Sexual Assault and Family Education (SAFE) Guyana, and he helps coordinate food distribution to the homeless population in Linden, Guyana. He also sorts clothing and helps coordinate clothing schedule pick-up across Westchester County and New York City.  

Brisport serves as a member of New York State Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins' Youth Advisory Council. He is a member of Westchester Alpha’s Suit-UP! Mentoring Program. He commits himself to community service through all of these organizations, and he wants to continue to help people. He plans to study biomedical engineering with a minor in prosthetics to give other people opportunities to live a fulfilled life.    

Brisport winning award

“I feel like this award means that you’re supposed to continue to strive to be better, not only as a black man, but as a man for the rest of the community,” said Brisport. “The way I can continue to emulate Dr. King’s dream is by uniting the community as a whole. It can be small things like taking out the trash for your neighbor or doing community service.”  

Mohamadou Alou founded the Knight’s Boutique at MVHS. He collaborates with teachers and other students to receive clothing donations from the school and community. They donate these clothes for free in a room at MVHS, where students can come in and ‘shop’ for their clothing. The boutique has everyday clothing as well as suits, prom dresses, shoes, and other formal wear. Through this, he can help people with less opportunities get nice clothes and feel dignified and stylish. Alou was born in Niger and immigrated to New York in 2020. Despite his short time here, he has worked hard to pioneer new ideas to help his school community.   

Alou winning award

“First of all, Dr. Martin Luther King and I have something in common: helping community," said Alou. "I like helping people in need. At first I was nervous (about the Knight’s Boutique) to be honest, but as soon as it started going and we started getting news I was like wow. I did not know it was going to be like that. To see kids shopping and getting what they like, that makes me feel good.”  

With these scholarships, these three scholars will have additional support for books, housing, and more when they begin college in the coming year.   

Winners at MLK Awards
Dr. Pearce and Dr. BC

Students, teachers, and community members from countries around the world filled the cafeteria for Mount Vernon High School’s No Place for Hate - A Walk Around the Globe on Friday, January 20, 2023. The room was lined with flags from around the world, and tables were set up with displays detailing the cultures of each country. There was an assortment of food from several countries as well.  

Students in Pre-K playing games at House of Sports

Universal Prekindergarten students in the Mount Vernon City School District are currently learning about health and nutrition. To support the learning in this unit, pre-K students from across the district took a trip to House of Sports.

Kids petting rabbit

Traphagen scholars took an in-house field trip that featured a tortoise, ferret, and albino rabbit. Students were allowed to touch all the animals and see them up close. Nick Coon, a naturalist educator at Greenburgh Nature Center, brought his scaly and furry friends to Traphagen School on Tuesday, January 10, 2023, for the field trip.

Pre-K students arriving to school

A month after the beginning of the Mount Vernon City School District's universal pre-kindergarten program for 3-year-olds (UPK-3), parents are seeing development in their children's communication and reading skills. Scholars began their pre-K journey at WestCOP Bethel Early Childhood Center, Friendship for Tots, and Our Lady of Victory School.   

Firefighter gathers pre-k students for a picture.

Pre-kindergarten students toured Mount Vernon to see all the community helpers throughout the month of December. The “hop on, hop off” bus tour visited the fire and police departments, grocery store, library, post office, Board of Education office, City Hall and more.