Big Sisters Motivate Underclassmen

By Sandy Chen’15 and Samar Syeda’15

Everyone needs a little help sometimes. The Big Sis- ter Program helps you out with your problems, so you can sail smoothly through high school.

“I want the big sisters girls who have a story to in- spire the little ones,” said Ms. Sakina Simon, the creator of the and Thursday, from 3:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.

There are never more than two little sisters and one big sister on a table, so that the little sisters can really get the individualized attention they need. The big sisters help the little ones target their main problems and improve in those areas. For many of the little sisters the problem is math and staying on task. To help them stay on task Ms. Simon separates the girls and puts them in different tables.

“Many people might just think that this is just a tutoring program, but it’s so much more than that,” said Ishmath Cellion ’15.

For many big sisters, this program is personal and intense because they are changing a girl’s life. They’re not just helping them in their education, they’re helping them make right decisions and put them on the right path to excellence. It’s like having the bigger little sister you never had. Some big sisters even see this program as their second chance.

“When I see this student I see me,” said Kristina Rodriguez ‘15, a big sister. “I used to be in the wrong path and not study a get horrible grades and I suffer now. I wish I had a second chance but I do with Willine, my little sister. All the little sisters have so much potential because they’re still maturing.”

The big sister program started and stayed in the past but this is its newest attempt to get organized and help girls. At first, there were only a few big sisters and little sisters, but as the word got around more people joined and the numbers grew to 32 big sisters and 31 little sisters in just a month.

Even Ms. Arlene Morales is noticing this success. Ms. Morales is in the library while the big sister program is taking place, and she is in awe with how she has seen the program grow.

The Big Sister Program is an after school program that offers one-on-one tutoring to freshmen and sophomores who are having trouble keeping up their grades. The tutors are the ‘big sisters’ and the freshmen and sophomores who are being tutored are the ‘little sisters.’ The big sisters are all juniors and seniors, who can lend a helping hand to the little ones. The big sisters are there to help guide the little ones since they have already been in their shoes.

“I messed up my first semester,” said little sister, Lisette Clemente’17, “but I’m glad I’m getting a second chance to clean up my act and get my grades as high as I know I can.”

Many of the little sisters were struggling with school before the start of this program, and now, they feel like they have a fresh start. Before this program most of them didn’t have the motivation to strive and achieve for the best, but now they have their big sisters keeping them on track and helping them along the way.

“I learn a lot from being here,” said Dina Alkhtry’17. “I’m definitely seeing an improvement in my grades as well.”

“I think this program is superior to any other program.”

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