La Conexión: Helping Young Immigrant Students in Our Community

The Blair Connection Club (La Conexión) was formed this fall by Emily Choi (’17), Jane Fitzpatrick (’17), and Joy Nikkel (’17), with the goal of connecting the Blair community to Latin America and to the Latin American community in Northwest New Jersey. To that end, the club picked up a tutoring project initiated last spring by Mrs. Lang as one of its activities. On October 21st, members of the newly-formed La Conexión officially took the project under their wing and held the first Wednesday afternoon tutoring session of the academic year. Sarah Field (’16), Misa Kim (’17), Tys Sweeney (’17), and Yichuan Yan (’16) were in attendance.

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Mrs. Lang began the tutoring program last year in collaboration with the Saint Kateri Parish branch of The Migrant Ministry of the Diocese of Paterson. Saint Kateri Parish is located in nearby Sparta. Every Wednesday, a group of dedicated students went to Newton after school to tutor young immigrant children. Often times, these kids are unable to get help with their school work because their parents have busy, inconsistent working hours. Also, many of the parents are still learning the English language, which poses difficulties for both the families and the schools.

Last week, Blair students Emily Choi, Irene Choi (’18), Joy Nikkel, Tys Sweeney, Alecia Mund (’17), and Yichaun Yan visited the Migrant Ministry and worked with a group of bright, wonderful kids. Some students read books or drew with the young students and others taught Math and English.

This group consisted of some old members and new ones, and the new members left the Newton Migrant Ministry office expressing their excitement for the Wednesdays to come.

(Copyright 2015 Emily Choi)