Dolphins, City Year partnership creates graduation explosion
The Miami Dolphins, along with City Year Miami, are poised to make a huge difference in two inner city Miami high schools. The Dolphins have pledged a whopping, $1 million donation to help keep students on track to graduate from Miami Carol City Senior High and Miami Norland Senior High, which are two predominantly black schools in Miami Gardens. City Year Miami is an education-focused nonprofit organization that partners with public schools to help keep students on track to graduate. The Dolphins are amidst the third year of a four-year commitment to donate the $1 million dol- lars to help out the students and schools.
Last month, proceeds from the Dolphins' annual "Fins Weekend," the team's signature charity event, went towards the donation.
Fins Weekend, which is the Dolphins signature charity for its foundation, was a huge success again this year, and Dolphins and executives as well as staff are proud to contribute a sizable amount raised during the weekend, towards their $1 million donation to the schools.
Thus far, the multi-year commitment is making a big difference at both schools. Miami Carol City Senior High School's graduation rate was 62.9% in 2011 and increased to 80.6% by 2016. This is an increase of 17.7% in the time that City Year has partnered with this school. Miami Norland Senior High School's graduation rate was 72.2% in 2011 and increased to 88.2% by 2016. This is an increase of 25.3% in the time that City Year has partnered with this school.
“Fins Weekend is about the Dolphins as an organization coming together -- all of the players, coaches, staff, alumni and cheerleaders -- to support education,” Miami Dolphins Foundation Executive Director Jennifer Jehn said. “City Year Miami is making a difference in the lives of young people in Miami Gardens, and we’re proud to support this community. Amid the golfing, fishing and parties, the event is centered around a greater cause of making a true impact in education."
“We appreciate the time, talent and treasure generously donated by the Miami Dolphins, which demonstrates their commitment to City Year Miami’s important mission,” City Year Miami Executive Direc- tor & Vice President Keith Fletcher said. “The Dolphins investment in our work at Carol City and Norland Senior high schools has helped City Year support teachers and bolster student achievement over the past three years. It is an all-in commitment for the Dolphins. Not only are they our hometown team, but they're rolling up their sleeves and getting it done. The Dolphins get it that education is the great equalizer." They're helping young people achieve what they didn't think was possible."
Jason Jenkins, Senior Vice President of Communications and Community Affairs, said choosing the two schools was a natural. "When we looked at the collaboration, we chose two schools nearby that could use our help. It was a natural fit for us." Jenkins also said the players are involved as well.
"Overall our players are very involved in our community programs. Some have even toured one of the schools. They want to be actively involved. I would implore others to get involved with such programs and with youth to see that they are inspired, engaged and have a bright future. The Dolphins are happy to have done that."
Fins Weekend Golf Tournament raises funds to support their four-year million dollar commitment.
Dolphins golf tournament participants check in on game day.