Daily Classroom Instruction

Elevate New York incorporates 13 vital character qualities and life skills into our daily classroom curriculum through a variety of writing exercises, reading materials, and group discussions. These qualities and skills are designed to develop the personal character and capabilities needed for success. On the most immediate, practical level we aim to increase school attendance and improve academic test scores.

Seven Character Qualities
For Success

  • Vision

    Thinking and dreaming of your future

  • Courage

    Standing up for what you believe in

  • Respect

    Treating yourself and others well

  • Caring

    Being kind and helping others

  • Responsibility

    Doing what you need to do

  • Positive Work Ethic

    Working hard and doing a good job

  • Integrity

    Honesty, honor, and keeping your word

Six Skills
For Success

  • Career-Mindedness

    Preparing for your career, based on your skills and interests

  • Communication

    Speaking clearly, listening carefully, and making sure that you understand

  • Leadership

    Influencing a team to accomplish a goal

  • Problem-Solving

    Developing effective solutions for difficult situations

  • Decision-Making

    Making good choices

  • Goal-Setting

    Making plans and taking steps to reach your dreams


Volunteers, along with trained staff members, community members and business professionals provide invaluable mentoring and support services to Elevate students beyond the classroom through a variety of educational after-school activities and events. Staff members in particular spend a great deal of time mentoring, because a student’s opportunity to learn should not stop at the end of the school day.

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Elevate students develop teamwork and leadership skills year-round by participating in outdoor activities after-school, on weekends, and during the summer. These programs allow students to build confidence in their own abilities by exploring experiences outside their comfort zone.

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Post-Secondary Training & Support

At Elevate we know that graduation day is just the beginning, so we provide support to students taking their next steps by assisting with the admission applications process, running interview practice sessions, and exam preparation.

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Over a six year period, Elevate New York has worked with more than 1,050 students from four Public Schools in the South Bronx.

97% of eligible Elevate seniors graduated from high school. (Compared to 70.5% in New York City and just under 60% of non-Elevate students in the Bronx. Source)

Elevate has accomplished all this with only 2 full-time staff, periodic part-time staff and several volunteers. The Colorado UpLift program, upon which Elevate is based, is designed to be effective as a team-teaching model. Elevate New York has been a pilot program to date, based on the teaching model. We are expanding to the full team-teaching model, as we increase funding.

A third-party study demonstrated that kids in programs like Elevate attend school 41% more days than their peers who are not in mentoring programs.

Your support—both at the individual as well as Corporate level—will help us implement this effective program successfully throughout the NYC school system, increasing graduation rates and improving the lives of many more young people.

In School

Every Day:

Elevate is in New York Public Schools every day of the week.

Our high school classes are taught DAILY as an elective that counts toward graduation.

Every Week:

Elevate conducts 12 high school classes and 11 elementary school classes, teaching 60 high school students and 243 elementary students.

Our high school students teach the elementary school classes each week, and are now learning to be philanthropists by mentoring the 3rd-5th graders in their neighborhood.

Every Month:

Over the past 6 years, Elevate has engaged over 100 leading professionals from different industries to join the classroom as Guest Speakers and Topical Experts. Please join us!

After School

80% of our high school students have participated in After School programming.

Almost every week since February of 2011, we have taken Elevate students to the boardrooms of Instinet, LLC, a top tier institutional trading firm. Our students have an opportunity to continue the conversation about the same soft skills they learn about in the Elevate classroom.

Since the autumn of 2010, Elevate has partnered with World Youth Alliance (WYA). Elevate students learn the high school version of the work WYA does at the United Nations, through their consultative status.

We have partnered with Harvard's Latina Empowerment And Development Conference the last two years. Our students have an opportunity to tour Harvard's campus and learn from Hispanic leaders in various fields, most of them Harvard graduates, who came from similar backgrounds as our students.


Elevate students enjoy ice-skating at Bryant Park.

Elevate students have contributed to the community by volunteering with nonprofit organization buildOn, and with Hurricane Sandy relief efforts.

Eight leading Elevate students were selected to travel internationally with members of other school organizations, where they built schools, did community service projects, and participated in academic conferences. This experience gave them the opportunity to use the lessons learned in Elevate beyond the borders of their own communities.

2012 Highlight

Elevate students enjoyed participating in TEDxHarlem.

2011 Highlight

Elevate led a women’s leadership fieldtrip to Washington, D.C., attending the the Vital Voices Awards Ceremony at the Kennedy Center where Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton was the evening’s keynote speaker.

2010 Highlight

Elevate students participated in a leadership development and team building retreat at Riverside Farm in Pittsfield, Vermont.

Post Secondary

Eighty-three of eighty-six Elevate seniors graduated from high school.

Elevate students find internships and volunteer opportunities to build and enhance their post-secondary experience.

2012 Highlight

Through our corporate partnership, one Elevate graduate completed a summer internship between her freshman and sophomore year at Syracuse University with Instinet LLC.

Kevin Singleton
Founder & CEO

Kevin Singleton founded Elevate New York in 2009. For over 25 years, as a specialist in youth development, Kevin has travelled across the United States and throughout the world, inspiring students to make a difference on their campuses and in their communities. In aggregate, Kevin has performed for and spoken to over 3 million students in 20 countries, averaging over 200,000 young people each year.

During this same period, Kevin has performed, consulted and administered up to five conferences each year and has often been the keynote speaker for various national and regional conferences conducted by organizations including Student Council, Future Business Leader of America, Distributive Educational Clubs of America, National Honor Society, Mothers Against Drunk Driving and Students Against Drunk Driving.

Executive Board

Scott MacGregor — Board Chair

Jennifer Kang — Vice-Chair

Oliver Glenn — Treasurer

  • Denise Clements

    Physicians Rehab Solution, Co-Founder
  • Phil Clements

    Physicians Rehab Solution, Co-Founder & CFO
  • Oliver Glenn

    Bank of the West
    Principal Senior Credit Officer
  • Philippe Hoerle-Guggenheim

    Hoerle-Guggenheim Gallery, Dir.
  • Marques Johnson

    Corporate Cousel
  • Jennifer Kang

    Merrill Lynch
    Wealth Management
  • Scott MacGregor

    SomethingNew LLC
    Founder & CEO
  • Kevin Singleton

    Elevate New York Founder & Executive Director
    International Motivational Youth Speaker

Development Board

  • Daniel Donnelly

    Donnelly Mechanical
    CEO & Founder
  • Jonathan Kellner

  • Kim Chanin

    Chanin Art Advisory

Advisory Council

Aia Tulepbergenova — Advisory Council Chair

Heather Atria — Advisory Council Vice-Chair

  • Bryan Abreu

    Berklee College of Music City Program
    Advisory Board Member
  • Chuck Becker

    Becker Ventures
  • Jeff Cappon

    Elegran Real Estate
  • Bunnie Crichton

  • Becca Hill

    Teaching and Learning Alliance
    Education Consultant
  • Nancy E. Hill, Ph.D.

    Harvard University
    Professor, Graduate School of Education
    Suzanne Murray Professor
  • Israel Houghton

    Power of One Foundation
    Founder & CEO
  • Angela Johnson

  • Brett Jones

    Four-J Ranches
  • Roger Key

    Suntrust Bank
    Sr. VP Private Wealth Management
  • Ray Lee

  • Carl Lentz

    Lead Pastor
  • Larry Levy, Esq.

    Greenberg Traurig, LLP
  • Stacy Marson

  • Jeff McCall

    Head of Strategy
  • Danny McDaniel

    Advocare International
  • Diane McDaniel

    Advocare International
  • Jeff Millard

    Northwestern Mutual
    Marketing + Relationship Manager
  • Sean Myers

    Pure Potential International
  • Montes Piard

    General Atlantic
    Vice President
  • David Simula

    EPIC Platforms
    President & CEO
  • Jennifer Stevenson

    Abbott Nutrition
    Therapeutic Nutrition Specialist – Acute Care
  • Aia Tulepbergenova

    Morgan Stanley
    E-commerce Analytics
  • Kene Turner

    EpiLife Consulting
  • Domingo Zapata

    Fine Artist

Elevate New York is a high-quality youth development program accredited by the NYC Department of Education. Within school, our daily class is an elective teaching character quality and life skills to high school students who, in turn, teach neighboring elementary students the lessons they have learned. Our after-school mentoring program is a continuation of the relationships that begin in the classroom.


Based on the award winning model of the Colorado Uplift program, Elevate New York has made a visible and positive impact on the lives of more than 1,050 students since its beginnings in 2009. Over 97% of our students graduate from high school and over 70% pursue post-secondary education.

Elevate New York maintains outside evaluations from independent third parties. For the 2015 evaluation, read the Elevate New York Evaluation Report.