Academic Coaching Program


Mr. Mark Bruce
Counselor (6-8)
Academic Coaching Program Director

Program Overview

For more than sixty years, McQuaid Jesuit has served the greater Rochester area through the ministry of Jesuit education. Reflecting on the gifts we have, and recognizing our challenges, as well, the community of McQuaid Jesuit desires to stay true to our past experience by serving the needs of our neighbors in their current context.

Emerging within our community, we see the need for stronger educational opportunities for those who, although academically talented, are deficient in the skills required to actualize their natural gifts. We see this particularly among those who are financially and/or socially challenged or who live within school districts that struggle for a variety of reasons.

We at McQuaid Jesuit can make a difference in the lives of these fine young men. Through the addition of academic and personal support, we believe the benefits of a Jesuit education could be made available in areas of our community that need it most. Additionally, such a program will introduce our current student body to the needs of our greater Rochester community as well as develop an appreciation for gifts that come from a more diverse population.

To address this need, McQuaid Jesuit implemented an “Academic Coaching Program” in support of those who could benefit from additional academic help and personal support. The goal is to facilitate a successful transition to McQuaid Jesuit and ensure the development and maintenance of the necessary skill set. The coach is a member of our school community charged with the care of a small group of students who have been identified as candidates for this program. The coach enables and ensures these students will work to overcome their adversities and thrive in a culture of achievement.

The ACP is comprised of five components:

  • The Coaching Program – The coach is a member of our school community charged with the care of students who have been identified as candidates for this program. The coach ensures these students will work to overcome their adversities and thrive in a culture of achievement. He engages each individually, and interacts with teachers, counselors, coaches, moderators and parents to identify roadblocks and to develop strategies to address them. He is a facilitator, contact person, guide and mentor.
  • The Arrupe Tutoring Program – In 2014, McQuaid Jesuit introduced an Academic Center into the life of the school. Coordinated by a learning specialist, center personnel work in conjunction with teachers and counselors to identify students who would benefit from the support of longer-termed tutoring. Parents and tutors then work the relationship out, developing a tutoring plan and compensation agreements independent of McQuaid Jesuit. Students participating in the ACP have tutors available through the Academic Center, and financial aid is offered for this service through McQuaid Jesuit’s Arrupe Fund.
  • ACP Summer – All ACP students will participate in intensive summer experiences that prepare them for success at McQuaid Jesuit. New students take foundational classes in Mathematics, Reading and Writing. Current students can take classes that remediate past failures or review areas of weakness. They can also take classes in support of their academic workload in the upcoming year, or they can advance into more challenging classes if their status allows it. Additionally, ACP students who are entering their senior year at McQuaid Jesuit have the opportunity to participate in the College Essay Workshop, which provides them the ability to complete their college essay prior to their senior year under the guidance of McQuaid Jesuit faculty members.
  • Alumni Networking – Several McQuaid Jesuit alumni are invited back to discuss their professional and other life experiences with participants in the Academic Coaching Program. Alumni range in age and in profession, and volunteer their time to connect with students and help shape their futures.
  • Men with and for Others – Students involved in the Academic Coaching Program offer service to those in the community less fortunate than they. Upperclassmen serve in places like Cameron Community Ministries, an Urban Outreach Community Center in Rochester’s Lyell-Otis neighborhood. Younger students serve by tutoring their classmates, coaching in the summer session, or mentoring others in the ACP program.

Eligibility Criteria

Admittance into the Academic Coaching Program will be determined by the selection committee. This committee will be evaluating potential candidates on an individual basis. However, there are three major eligibility components that will be considered when evaluating each student. Eligible students should:

  • Be economically disadvantaged
    • The student has received a significant need-based financial aid award
  • Be from an underperforming school district
    • District statistics will be verified on the New York State Education Department website
  • Have low “Social Capital”
    • Single-parent household
    • Projects to be a 1st generation college graduate
    • Will be first to graduate from high school in family
    • From a household where English is not spoken at home
    • Student was adopted
    • Student was previously home-schooled