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New York Life to Fund Schomburg Center Children's Program

NEW YORK, December 18, 2001 — The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture and New York Life Insurance Company jointly announced today a grant of $1.16 million from the New York Life Foundation that will fund a new educational program offered to schoolchildren between the ages of 11 and 17. The program will be conducted on Saturdays throughout the school year.

Howard Dodson, director of the Schomburg Center, said, "This multi-year grant is the largest ever provided to Schomburg for nurturing young people, and the funding will allow us to present the histories and cultures of African and African-American people in a more comprehensive and inspiring way than we've ever been able to achieve. New York Life is to be commended for recognizing the need, and for joining hands with us to produce such a meaningful educational experience for children."

Sy Sternberg, chairman, president and chief executive officer of New York Life, said, "The Schomburg Center's reputation for excellent cultural programming is now teamed with the New York Life Foundation's focus on programs that help at-risk young people learn and grow. Together we've developed an innovative program that we know will empower many young people by helping develop their leadership potential and encouraging them to have a positive impact on their community."

New York Life's four-year funding will establish a program called The New York Life/Schomburg Center Junior Scholars Program. The program will initially recruit a pilot class of 100 youths of African descent between the ages of 11 and 17, with a special emphasis on males in this age group. In the pilot program, participants will attend all-day Saturday sessions from February 2002 through June 2002. In addition to sessions on history and culture, the program will also offer workshops, special events and forums featuring successful African-Americans. During this pilot phase, the Center will test and evaluate a variety of learning methods and resources.

Beginning in October 2002, and continuing for the next three years, the program will offer an annual series of weekly programs over the eight-month period from October through June for 200 students in Year II, and 300 students in succeeding years.

Mr. Dodson said the reason the program will focus on nurturing young black males is that studies have shown that is the most at-risk group in the African-American community. "With a better understanding and appreciation of African and African-American history and culture, we believe our young black people can be inspired to move ahead in American society," he said.

The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, located in Harlem, in New York City, is a national research library devoted to collecting, preserving and providing access to resources documenting the experiences of peoples of African descent throughout the world. One of four research centers of The New York Public Library, the Schomburg Center is the permanent repository of resources that, in many instances, were at risk of being hidden away, destroyed or lost forever. Its collections are shared with the public through exhibitions, publications and educational, scholarly and cultural programs.

The New York Life Foundation, established in 1979 by New York Life Insurance Company, is the major vehicle through which the company channels contributions to national and local nonprofit organizations. Through its Nurturing the Children initiative, the Foundation supports organizations, programs and services that target young people, particularly in the areas of educational enhancement, mentoring, and safe places to learn and grow.

New York Life Insurance Company, a Fortune 100 company, is the largest mutual insurance company in the United States. Founded in 1845 and headquartered in New York City, New York Life and its affiliates offer life insurance, annuities and long-term care insurance. Through New York Life Investment Management, the company provides institutional asset management and trust services and an array of securities products and services, such as institutional and retail mutual funds, including 401(k) products.

Contacts:

Harold Anderson
Schomburg Center
212-491-2259

William Werfelman
New York Life
212-576-5385

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New York Life to Fund Schomburg Center Children's Program

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