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Say Yes Camp opens July 2 for nearly 3,000 SCSD K-5 students

June 29, 2012

Susan Dutch
(315) 443-1525

Nearly 3,000 K-5 students will begin Say Yes Summer Camp on Monday, July 2, and one group of campers will get a very special visit from Syracuse University Men’s Head Basketball Coach Jim Boeheim on Tuesday, July 3 at 1:30 p.m.

James P. Gaspo, president of Citizens Bank and RBS Citizens, New York, will join Boeheim to engage with students and tour the Dr. King Magnet School to learn more about additional Say Yes supports available to children and their families, including a legal clinic and health clinic, which are open during the academic year.

The Jim and Juli Boeheim Foundation and Citizens Bank Foundation have made significant donations, specifically in support of the Say Yes Summer Camp program over the past several years.

Say Yes campers from grades K-5 will spend the next six weeks—four days each week— engaged in rigorous academic lessons taught by certified teachers in the morning, and afternoon enrichment activities such as music, dance, art and sports.

The Jim & Juli Boeheim Foundation has contributed $40,000 in the past two years, and Citizens Bank has provided Say Yes $45,000 in grants since 2008. The funds help cover operational costs for the camps, which are offered at no cost to families.

Say Yes Camps“The children of today are the leaders of tomorrow,” says Gaspo. “Say Yes to Education is helping to ensure that kids here in Syracuse have the underpinnings for a productive future by providing academic support and enrichment activities.  The Citizens Bank Foundation grant for Say Yes to Education is our investment in tomorrow’s leaders.”

One enrichment activity that will be offered at Dr. King Magnet School is sports broadcasting. Boeheim will delight students with his first-hand knowledge of the field of sports, and his upcoming experience coaching the U.S. Olympic men’s basketball team at the 2012 Summer Games in London.

This is the fourth year that thousands of Syracuse children have had the opportunity to attend camp free of charge through Say Yes to Education. Unlike previous years when there were 18 camp sites (one at each school), this year the camps will be combined and held at the following seven locations: Dr. King
Magnet, McKinley-Brighton, Franklin, Frazer K-8, Percy Hughes, Meachem and Huntington schools.

Say Yes Summer Camps also provide job opportunities for hundreds of local college students every year. This year, 235 college students were hired and trained as youth enrichment specialists to lead students in afternoon activities. Of those hired, 58 are Say Yes Scholars, which means they are graduates of the Syracuse City School District and are attending a Say Yes partner college. Thirty-three enrichment specialists are SU students, including eight of the 56 Say Yes Scholars.

"Citizens Bank and the Jim and Juli Boeheim Foundation remain great champions for our children," says Pat Driscoll, operating director for the Syracuse chapter of Say Yes to Education. “We greatly appreciate their continued support.”

About Say Yes to Education

Say Yes to Education, Inc. is a national, non-profit education foundation committed to dramatically increasing high school and college graduation rates for our nation's urban youth. Say Yes provides comprehensive supports, including the promise of free college tuition, aligned with what research indicates is needed to enable every child in the program to achieve his or her potential. Learn more at

About Say Yes Syracuse

Say Yes Syracuse is a landmark collaboration that brings the Syracuse City School District, SU, Say Yes to Education, Inc., the Syracuse Teachers’ Association, the Syracuse Association of Administrators and Supervisors, the City of Syracuse, Onondaga County, the American Institutes for Research, and a diverse group of Syracuse area corporate, non-profit, and philanthropic organizations together to organize people, time, money and resources to support city students. Learn more at

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