Service. Partnership. Community.
In 1993, Bridges was founded at St. Paul’s School with the goal of turning summer into a time of growth rather than a time of regression for motivated, but underserved students in East Baltimore. What started as a four-week summer academic enrichment program for 18 fourth and fifth grade students at a Title I School in East Baltimore has evolved and expanded over the last 19 years into a 13-year year-round experience with 185+ volunteers serving 300+ students.
Bridges seeks to ensure that all students who enter the program have the support and guidance necessary to become the young leaders our society needs. Gilman opened its own Bridges site in 2014 and now serves 36 public school students in fourth through sixth grades. In addition to hosting a five-week summer institute, Gilman provides a year-round after-school program for fourth and fifth grade students from Yorkwood Elementary, Leith Walk Elementary, Govans Elementary, and Cecil Elementary Schools. Sixth graders participate in monthly Weekend Learning Adventures throughout the school year.
“When I think of the Bridges impact, I think of developing young people,” said Director of Bridges at Gilman David Menard. “Developing Baltimore City Public School students to find consistent academic success from elementary through high school, to graduate from high school and college, and to find fulfilling career paths that lead to financial security. Developing independent school students of all backgrounds to build caring relationships with Baltimore City School students, to learn about issues of unequal access and opportunity in Baltimore, and to be part of building a more inclusive and equitable society. Creating a shared space where both groups can develop together is the magic of Bridges.”
Check out the 2021-2022 fall recap of the Bridges at Gilman program below.