Support Youth Employment Programs

Your contribution will allow for students/interns to work this summer and gain not only financial independence but also transferable skills that will last a lifetime.

 We are very grateful to all our supporters and hope to welcome you to our family. 

Where Does Your Money Go?

A contribution of $2,500 helps fund a structured summer internship opportunity for inner-city youth that are not otherwise exposed to professional resources.


 Interested in learning more about what a donation to SYEP/Ladders for Leaders looks like?

Terri Prezio
Ladders for Leaders Corporate Development Manager
[email protected]
718-268-5011 ext. 162  

Adam Fier,
WLG/SYEP Program Director
[email protected]
(718) 286-8121

The Ladders for Leaders and SYEP team has been working diligently with our neighbors/corporate sponsors to fund summer internship positions for our applicants.   

Thanks to a $30,000 donation from Cord Meyer Development, Commonpoint Queens has been able to place 12 interns for summer 2020 despite the cancellation of Ladders for Leaders and SYEP. You can help us place more interns with your support! Thanks to QNS for their coverage at

In 2019 we partnered with Ridgewood Savings Bank and Apple Bank receiving donations that funded the salaries of THREE lucky Ladders Interns this summer.  

josh torres mount sinai intern ladders for leaders

My internship at Mount Sinai this past summer was truly amazing. I had no idea what to expect going into it but I emerged with a passion for research and neurology. With the help of my mentors, I learned how to analyze MRI data, run statistics on data sets, read through research papers in depth, and present my work in a professional and concise way. My summer placement is over, but I now know that this is the work I want to keep doing in college and in the future. I am very happy that I was able to participate in this internship over the summer. I feel very proud of my work and my experiences will help me develop as a young individual venturing out into the world.


Josh Torres – Center for Excellence in Youth Education-Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai 2019

This Summer, I had the honor of working at a cancer laboratory at the Tisch Cancer Institute at the Icahn School of Medicine in Mount Sinai. It was an exhilarating experience, to be able to work at a lab that is doing research on such a deadly disease that has affected so many people all over the world. I was able to assist my mentor with a scientific research paper that will be published by next Summer. This internship has greatly influenced my interest in future career, I’ve always wanted to work in medicine and work with patients. But working at the lab made me consider lab research as a career choice. Most high schoolers do not get a chance like this, I am so happy that I was one of the few who were chosen for this very special program.

Tasmiah Akhter – Center for Excellence in Youth Education-Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai 2019

This summer, I spent my time working at a lab in Mount Sinai Hospital that focused on Cancer Genetics. Not only was the work incredibly interesting and challenging, but it also helped me realize that although science may not be as flashy or glamorous as medicine is perceived by the world, it is equally, if not more, important. This experience of being very independent allowed me to also learn a lot about how to troubleshoot and to remain resilient after failure. I learned many new cutting-edge techniques that allowed me to connect what I learned in school to real-time experiments and discoveries. Despite the great knowledge that I gained, I would say the most important part of this experience was the confirmation that science is the place for me. I have always felt that something was missing from my life and I yearned to make a difference in the world. This summer I finally felt like I was contributing. With an experiment ahead of me and a pipette in my hand, I knew that what I was doing was for the good of humanity and the progression of our knowledge.   

Ophelia Lee – Center for Excellence in Youth Education-Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai 2019