CHICAGO (CBS) – All 167 seniors at Urban Prep Charter Academies’ campuses in Englewood and University Village are heading to college next fall. The entire senior classes of the two schools have been accepted to four-year universities.
WBBM Newsradio’s Mike Krauser reports the students gathered in the gym of the Englewood campus, 6201 S. Stewart Av., for a celebration Thursday morning.
Lawrence Mead was making plans to head to the University of Illinois in the fall.
“I’m actually very proud; not only of myself, but of my brothers that’s here with us today,” he said. “It’s a real exciting experience right now.”
Derrick Newton is also going to college.
“I’m ecstatic for my brothers, my family, and for myself as well. It’s just a great honor to be here right now,” he said.
Urban Prep founder and CEO Tim King said “it’s a lot of hard work” to get all of the school’s seniors into college.
“It’s a combination of things, but I think most importantly it’s creating a positive school culture. From the day these guys come to us, we make sure we focus hard on letting them know that their job is to prepare for college,” he said. “And our job, as the adults, is to make sure we’re doing the right thing to help them along the way.”
Urban Prep has picked up the informal nickname “Hogwarts in the Hood,” in reference to the school for wizards in the Harry Potter books.
“There’s a little bit of Hogwarts running through the school here. Our crest has borrowed a few things from the Gryffindor Lions,” King said. “So some people joke around and say we’re like Hogwarts in the Hood, but the only magic going on at Urban Prep is the magic that these guys put in with their hard work and dedication.”
It’s the fourth year in a row the all-male charter high school has celebrated having all of its graduating seniors accepted to four-year colleges.