Kiah Tate (center), Social Work Intern, KIPP NYC College Prep High School
Hunter College, Candidate for MSW (2022)
SUNY Albany (2018)
KIPP NYC College Prep (2014)

Although she just graduated from KIPP NYC College Prep High School in 2014, Kiah Tate is already on her second role at KIPP NYC! Based on the impact she’s had on students over the past three years, we hope this is the beginning of a long-term career at KIPP for this alumna.

Coming out of Suny Albany, Kiah was recruited to be in the first cohort of KIPP Through College and Career’s College Success Fellows, who provide alumni in their first two years of college with academic and financial aid advisory services. In that role, Kiah was most excited about the counseling she provided to her advisees:

“When the program ended this past June, I was able to see how much my advisee grew. Once she had a plan set for school, she reached out to me. She took the initiative. She was self-advocating and showing agency – it was a big win. She still checks in even though I’m no longer part of the program.“ 

Kiah’s advising skills compelled her to pursue a career in social work because it made her realize the importance of supporting and advocating for people in her community. She is now in her first year of graduate school at the Silberman School of Social Work at Hunter College. She is also interning with the Social Work team at KIPP NYC College Prep High School. She is supporting the school’s Fairness Committee, a panel of students that are trained to adjudicate non-safety-related incidents involving their peers to determine alternative consequences for the student(s) involved. She will also co-facilitate a group of female students that convene to devise strategies for overcoming social phobias and mitigating anxiety. Based on Kiah’s experience at the High School, she may have found her calling:

“I want to make services available to the community – to talk through issues and problems they are facing, especially since mental health is so stigmatized in our communities. The internship is giving me insight into what I want to do going forward. It’s a rewarding feeling to be a strong mentor for other students; I just want to be able to help students realize that it will all be worth it in the end.”

Kiah believes she’s more effective in her internship because she’s a KIPP alumna:

“Being an alum helps me connect with students more. I want them to talk about their own experiences, but when issues arise I provide insight into how I was struggling. One of the students I work with, we talk about why she’s feeling stressed and anxious. We talk about ways to insert yourself in class, talk to other students, put yourself out there. I let her lead the conversation. I always had teachers I could turn to. Now that I’m back, I hope I’m the staff member that students can turn to.”