Op/Ed By Mark Lee –
My name is Mark Lee, and I attend University Preparatory Charter School for Young Men, where I will be a senior in a few short weeks. I have been enrolled at UPrep since the seventh grade. In my time at UPrep, I have been active in sports, and other school activities, along with attending school everyday, and receiving good grades. I am not sure if this would be the case if I attended any other school!
In September 2016, the start of my junior year, UPrep opened a new Career & Technical Center next door to the main school, at the corner of Lake Ave. and Seneca Parkway. The UPrep Career & Technical Center offers programs in the areas of Facilities Maintenance, Culinary Arts, Information Technology and Machining. I chose to enroll in the Facilities Maintenance Program, where I learned all about plumbing, carpentry, welding and electrical. We also took many field trips to different trade union halls and various construction sites through Habitat for Humanity.
Through a RochesterWorks!/UPrep program, I was able to extend my learning throughout the summer by working with Habitat for Humanity. I currently report to various Habitat projects throughout the city of Rochester on a daily basis. I really enjoy working with and helping people. I am learning so much, such as landscaping, framing houses, building gates, pouring concrete, etc. The experience has also taught me that physical labor is very hard work, but seeing the end result has made it all worth it.
If I did not attend UPrep, I really don’t think I would have been able to get the education which has prepared me for both college and a career. UPrep has provided me with experiences that have kept me focused and successful. If I had to do it all over again, I would choose University Preparatory Charter School for Young Men as my middle and high school. This has been an amazing journey!