Beginning June 7th, the YMCA in Cambridge, MD will play host to the J Noah Skills Academy, a unique mentorship program for high school student athletes.
The J Noah Skills Academy is a nonprofit organization founded by Jordan Pearlstein, a college basketball player and longtime mentor who received his Certified Associate in Project Management designation from the Project Management Institute. Pearlstein combined all of these experiences to develop an innovative approach to mentorship.
The Academy provides student athletes with a free, fun way to learn practical project management skills that are highly desired by employers. The project management concepts are taught through the lens of basketball to help these students better relate to and understand the material. Exposing high schoolers to the principles of project management provides them with knowledge, self-awareness, and self-assessment to enable them to start and finish projects in all aspects of their lives. Possessing post-college level skills before they even graduate high school increases a J Noah student’s likelihood of both personal and professional success.
The curriculum is based on frameworks provided by the Project Management Institute. Each student enrolled at the J Noah Skills Academy works with their mentor to create a personalized Mentee Action Plan. The student uses project management skills to identify and achieve academic, athletic, and personal goals, and the action plan establishes processes for requesting any help and resources they need.
While Pearlstein started his program nearly a year ago, he had difficulty identifying a steady location that had basketball courts, study space, and the technological capabilities that would enable him to teach the full curriculum. After meeting with Pearlstein about this unique program, Executive Director Shania Gregory offered him space at the Pauline F. and W. David Robbins Family YMCA.
“I am very excited,” Pearlstein says. “The YMCA has everything we need for our students to get the most impact from our program. I am so grateful to Shania for giving us this opportunity to change young lives for the better.”
As a nonprofit organization, the J Noah Skills Academy is a free service for student-athletes. Once enrolled in the Academy, students will participate in three sessions per week throughout the summer – Tuesday and Thursday from 6:00 – 8:30 pm, and Saturday from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm. To learn more, enroll your child, volunteer, or make a donation, visit jnoahskills.org or contact Jordan Pearlstein at firstname.lastname@example.org or 608-208-3919.
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