News Release: HAMILTON, Bermuda – “The Peer Leaders in the PeerForward Programme are a positive example of the potential of Bermuda’s youth. The Government of Bermuda is thrilled to witness the impact the programme has had on our students, empowering them to dream big and pursue their academic and professional aspirations with unwavering determination.” said the Minister of Social Development and Seniors, Tinée Furbert.
“We congratulate the Mirrors Programme and the 3rd cohort of 15 talented Bermudian students. This marked the programme’s first overseas PeerForward experience as student peer leaders embarked on an enriching 4-day residential workshop at the prestigious Nazareth University in Rochester, New York, from July 12th to 16th.”
Launched in 2020 by the Mirrors Programme, the PeerForward Programme aims to enhance post-secondary preparation and enrollment among students at The Berkeley Institute (BI) and CedarBridge Academy (CBA). Since its inception, the programme has proven to be a resounding success in fostering a college and career-going culture at our Bermuda Public High Schools.
PeerForward operates on a unique model that recruits, trains, and motivates peer leaders to spearhead schoolwide campaigns, effectively linking academics to college and career opportunities. With an overarching goal to elevate college attendance rates, the programme endeavors to ensure that every S4 student applies to a minimum of three colleges and scholarships.
Programme Manager at the Mirrors Programme, Ms Kimberley Jackson shared: “During their time at Nazareth University, our students were fully immersed in the life of a college freshman, residing in dormitories, forging friendships with peers from various east coast high schools, and actively participating in activities that stimulated both personal and academic growth. Under the expert guidance of college coaches and professional writing mentors, the students meticulously crafted their college lists and personal statements, ensuring they are well-prepared for the exciting journey ahead.
“A noteworthy aspect of the training focused on empowering students to find their voice, fostering a sense of agency, and ultimately activating their full potential. By instilling these values, PeerForward strives to cultivate individuals who excel academically and are dedicated to serving their community and contributing positively to society.
“Supporting the students on this transformative journey, four counsellors, two from each school (BI & CBA), participated as advisors, providing guidance and mentorship throughout the workshop. Furthermore, two college coaches attended the event, solidifying their commitment to supporting the students throughout the upcoming academic year.
Minister Furbert concluded: “The Government of Bermuda extends its heartfelt appreciation to all partners and participants for their dedication to the success of the PeerForward programme. Together, we celebrate the resilience, determination, and ambition of Bermuda’s youth as they shape their futures and the future of our Island.”
Peer Leader Testimonials:
“After this workshop, I feel more confident in my ability to encourage and uplift others. I also am pleased that I got further advice on my post-secondary plan.” Sanaa
“A great opportunity to learn about scholarships and college applications before I start applying. My favorite part was the huddles, when we were planning sessions with our teams.” Tyler
“My best experiences were the activities we did to make us comfortable around each other and learn more about people from different walks of life.” Tajer
“My best experience was the Tower of Power activity. I had to physically convince people to give me scholarship money to pay for college.” Alexander
“I had a great time meeting new people and hearing about their experiences in their life, how they got over it, and how they became peer leaders.” Allura
Berkeley Institute (S4)
Amya Harvey Amya Harvey
CedarBridge Academy (S4)
Allura Correia- Cupidore
Kymaree Pitt (S3)
Dr Leonard Santucci
College Coaches – Volunteers