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Grade 4 students go to college

picture of Watervliet student talking with a Sage College studentpicture of student boarding bus to travel to Help Yourself Academypicture of student enrolled in the Help Yourself Academy at Sgae College

Watervliet fourth-graders are excited to be attending their first afternoon at the Help Yourself Academy an after-school enrichment program at Sage College in Troy.

After-school enrichment program allows students to explore science, technology, engineering, art and math


“We’re going to college!” exclaimed an enthusiastic fourth-grader as a group of 25 Watervliet Elementary School students boarded a bus bound for Russell Sage College on Thursday, Feb. 5.

The grade 4 students were eager to begin their first day of a science enrichment program housed on the Sage College campus in downtown Troy. The program, called the Help Yourself Academy (HYA), is an after-school program sponsored by the Esteves School of Education that offers fourth- and fifth-grade students from nearby school districts an opportunity to build skills in science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics (STEAM) through fun, hands-on projects.

"I'm looking forward to the experiments with electricity," said fourth-grader Colton Hall. His classmate Jordan Harvey was equally excited for the chance to learn more about science in a college laboratory. "It's my favorite subject," he said.

Students attend HYA two days each week during the winter and spring and work directly with Nationally Board certified instructors, college teaching assistants and college mentors who help the youngsters explore STEAM concepts and learn how art can enhance the study of science.

Through the program, students develop new interests, skills and good study habits and can also receive homework help from college students who are training to be educators.

“Our district is pleased to have our students participate in this enrichment program with Sage College,” said Watervliet Superintendent Dr. Lori Caplan.It will provide an opportunity for our students to experience learning in a college setting, and maybe inspire them to pursue a college education in the future.

In January, Sage College educators visited grade 4 classrooms at Watervliet Elementary School to speak with students about the HYA program and demonstrate a hands-on project similar to the instruction that takes place in the after-school enrichment program. View photo gallery