Youth Leadership and Success Project

The Youth Leadership and Success Project (YLSP) is the first program of its kind in Newark that intentionally blends a cohort of traditional and opportunity youth (disconnected from school and work) in support of college and career planning and development. Newark has an estimated 7,000 young people classified as opportunity youth. YLSP utilizes a social justice curriculum to support the development of youth voice and empowerment, enabling young people to develop a global perspective on justice and citizenship. The ultimate aim is to assist each YLSP Fellow in mapping a path to college and/or career. YLSP Saturday Academies include life planning activities, exercises on self-awareness, and seminars on leadership, the city's history, and youth advocacy. NCLC works closely with its partner, the Opportunity Youth Network (OYN) to strengthen and support critical program components.

Program Goals

  • Provide exciting workshops that aim to transform Newark's youth into socially engaged leaders with a focus on local to global social justice issues; build a foundation for an informed global citizenry.
  • Provide students with opportunities for service learning and cross-cultural experiences.
  • Encourage and support student voice, ensuring young people can advocate for themselves and share their ideas.
  • Provide timely college readiness supports to ensure a pathway to and through college and/or a post-secondary option.
  • Provide ongoing social supports through mentorship and peer-to-peer accountability. 

For more information on YLSP, please contact Kimberly Ledgister, YLSP Project Manager, at