Henninger High School 2019 alumna Audrey Rosenthal is an inspiring example of the transformative impact of Say Yes Syracuse.
Audrey was a dedicated student in high school and actively participated in various extracurricular activities. She served as the Henninger Girls Volleyball team captain during her senior year, showcasing her leadership skills on and off the court. Audrey was involved in dance at Caitlin Clarks Centre of Dance while balancing a part-time job at the mall.
Audrey’s journey with Say Yes Syracuse began at Lincoln Middle School, where she and her parents learned about the program through school channels and news outlets. Through Say Yes Syracuse’s guidance, she participated in as many Syracuse University Project Advance (SUPA) classes as possible, ultimately allowing her to graduate in 2019 with enough college credits to be considered a sophomore.
After high school graduation, Audrey attended SUNY Cortland, graduating in May 2023 with a major in history and a minor in Africana (African American) studies.
During college, Audrey balanced part-time work on and off campus while actively engaging in internships and volunteer work. Notable highlights include her roles as a sales associate at Aeropostale, Dicks Sporting Goods, and Target, progressing to management at Aeropostale. She later transitioned to a position at a local credit union, working her way up from a teller to a member service specialist. Additionally, Audrey obtained an internship with Our Lady at Pompei/St Peter’s Parish, contributing to a historical account for its 100th anniversary.
Audrey is now a master’s student at NYU, enrolled in the teacher residency program for social studies secondary education (grades 7-12) in partnership with the Syracuse City School District (SCSD). She anticipates graduating in the summer of 2024.
Looking to the future, Audrey envisions becoming a teacher at SCSD and continuing her academic journey with aspirations of enrolling in a Ph.D. program involving Africana studies, urban education, or cultural foundations of education.
Reflecting on her journey, Audrey acknowledges Say Yes to Education’s pivotal role in achieving her goals. The financial support provided by Say Yes made pursuing a four-year program feasible, removing a significant burden on her and her family. Additionally, Say Yes opened doors to valuable opportunities, including earning credits through SUPA classes and attending cost-free SAT prep courses in high school.
Audrey shares valuable advice for high school students and young professionals: “Don’t be afraid of making mistakes, never stop learning, and know that everything happens for a reason.” Embracing life’s moments, both highs and lows, has been a cornerstone of Audrey’s personal and academic growth. She encourages others to find peace and joy in the journey rather than striving for perfection.
Audrey expresses her gratitude to Say Yes for allowing her to attend college and achieve her goals. Her story is a testament to the transformative power of education and the profound impact of programs like Say Yes on students’ lives.