The newest Steppingstone Scholars came together for the first time on Saturday, May 20, at the New Family Welcome event, where they met their fellow Scholars and got a preview of what to expect this summer and beyond.
Every year, the Welcome Event provides a chance for new Scholars and their families to understand what it means to be a Scholar. Each Scholar received their first Steppingstone t-shirt, which they’ll proudly wear during the Steppingstone summer session, held at Milton Academy.
They also heard from Steppingstone founder Mike Danziger, current Scholars, and Steppingstone staff. Below are excerpts from the speeches Scholars Allen and Dorlie shared.
The Steppingstone Academy ’17
First off, congratulations, you are now a Steppingstone Scholar!
My name is Allen and I am in sixth grade right now. My future dreams are to get a basketball scholarship and graduate from college. I also want to be in the NBA Hall of Fame. But enough about me. You probably want to hear more about Steppingstone.
What is Steppingstone to me? Steppingstone to me is a program that will help you throughout your whole life. You might think that it is just a 14 month program, but when you are done with those 14 months you are still a part of Steppingstone.
Don’t worry about making friends at Steppingstone. I was nervous too, but I have met so many new friends and most of them are my best friends now.
The advice I would give to Scholars is keep going and don’t stop because at the end it will all be worth it. Once, I felt like I couldn’t keep going. Over the summer, I had a huge math packet and a final draft of a five-paragraph essay due. At that moment, I was so stressed, but my mom kept encouraging me and told me that I could do it. When I finished, I felt so relieved and I was proud of myself. Trust me, that feeling you’ll get is out of this world.
For me, the best part of Steppingstone has been the summer. You should be really excited for the summer because it is so much fun.
Remember how I told you it would all be worth it? Well, after all my hard work, I am going to be attending Boston Latin Academy this September. When I got the news that I was selected to attend BLA, my heart soared. I ran around the house screaming, “BLA! BLA! BLA!” Then, when I found out about my friends at Steppingstone who got in, it was even better. I was so happy.
I didn’t ever think I would get this opportunity. So remember, even if it gets tough, it is so worth it.
College Success Academy ’19
Welcome, Steppingstone Scholars and families! We are so excited that you chose to be a part of our family. Scholars, you made a very wise choice. Over the next ten years, Steppingstone will help you succeed and get close and closer to college. Steppingstone will help each and every one of us to take on the world.
Don’t change yourself to please others. You were chosen to be a Steppingstone Scholar for exactly who you are.
I’m sure some of you might be thinking, “Ugh, I just want to stay home, play games and relax this summer.” But ladies and gentlemen, you were all accepted to Steppingstone because we know that you love learning and that you can rise to the challenge. Not all students in Boston get this opportunity, so consider yourselves very special.
Steppingstone has helped my brain grow a whole lot, and now I feel like I can learn everything even in my most challenging classes.
If you guys need help, also remember to reach out to older Scholars like me, because we’re all on the same journey as you. Remember, there is no such thing as being “perfect” in this world. Maybe on Mars or Venus or Jupiter – if there are life forms there – but perfect doesn’t exist here on Earth. The Steppingstone family was chosen and built to help you succeed, and none of us are perfect, but what makes this community unique is that we try to improve every single day.