Partner Merilee Meacock, who led the architectural design team at Littleton Avenue, was bestowed the honor of cutting the ribbon. See below for the official press release.
KIPP New Jersey, the New York Giants, Local Initiatives Support Corporation and Elected Officials Celebrate Opening of New KIPP Newark Collegiate Academy Facility and Athletic Field with Ribbon Cutting Ceremony
To-date, KIPP NJ has invested more than $100 million in facilities development in the Newark community
Today, as part of the newly constructed, multimillion dollar KIPP Newark Collegiate Academy (NCA) facility in Newark’s West Ward, KIPP New Jersey, the New York Giants, elected officials and community leaders hosted a ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate the dedication of the new building and its athletic field.
New Jersey State Senator Teresa Ruiz, KIPP NJ CEO and Founder, Ryan Hill, and New York Giants Linebacker and Defensive Captain, Jonathan Casillas, were in attendance and spoke at the dedication. After the ceremony, the KIPP NCA Panthers football team participated in a hands-on football clinic with several New York Giants football players.
“Strong schools build strong communities. Today was about more than dedicating a new facility – it was about coming together to celebrate as a community the hard work of our kids and teachers,” said Ryan Hill, KIPP NJ CEO and Founder. “With this new facility, KIPP New Jersey continues to invest in the community as well as in the education of future generations of leaders. This facility drastically enhances the quality of services we can provide at KIPP Newark Collegiate Academy in order to equip our kids to change the world.”
“As a New Jersey native and New York Giant, I am very proud to represent the Giants and NFL as we join with LISC to dedicate this new athletic field and building at KIPP Newark Collegiate Academy. I am excited to know that these great kids will receive a first class physical education as part of their high school experience. I believe that a healthy body is a vital component of a healthy life, and I couldn’t be more excited for the opportunity ahead of these boys and girls,” said Jonathan Casillas, New York Giants Linebacker and Defensive Captain.
U.S. Senator Cory Booker also applauded the new facility.
“As the former Mayor of Newark, I understand the critical importance of empowering our youngest students through a high quality education,” said U.S. Senator Cory Booker. “I applaud KIPP New Jersey for their continued investment in the education of Newark’s youth that will open doors, create new opportunities and foster the success of our future leaders. Today’s ribbon cutting is another milestone in the collaborative effort to improve the educational opportunities and outcomes for Newark’s youth.”
A significant project that took just over one year to complete, KIPP New Jersey invested $35 million to construct the 104,000 square-foot building, designed by KSS Architects, and 130’x120’ state-of-the-art turf field that will provide NCA students a place to practice team sports and enjoy gym classes in an open and safe environment. Senior financing for the school facility and field was provided by LISC, Prudential, and Enterprise. Additional financing was provided by Building Hope and Partners for Common Good. Funding also was provided for the athletic field by the NFL Foundation Grassroots Program, a partnership between the NFL Foundation/NY Giants and Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC).
“The benefit these facilities will have on the community is immeasurable, and will last far into the future,” said Denise Scott, LISC’s executive vice president for national programs. “A strong school in a beautiful building, and a field where students can play safely and where families can come together, are components of a healthy, vital neighborhood that everyone deserves.”
With the capacity for 900 students, grades 9-12, the new building features multiple floors of classrooms each outfitted with state-of-the-art technology, a dedicated science suite, performing arts classrooms, a large library space, and enhanced exterior lighting and CCTV cameras for added security.
Moreover, the KIPP Newark Collegiate Academy will serve as a true community institution. Construction of the school employed 36 local residents from the city of Newark and NCA will work closely with local groups to host events and develop community driven programs.
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