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The Neighborhood Academy

Holistic college-prep education for underprivileged youth

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

The Neighborhood Academy has a unique mission to “break the cycle of generational poverty by preparing low-income youth for higher education.” The academy’s distinctive approach to education includes an extended school day, very small classes, close and ongoing communication with families, and a college preparatory curriculum that culminates in senior seminars in the humanities and sciences. To help students succeed academically, the academy also provides counseling, transportation, three meals a day, and assistance with emergency needs like medical care.

With these institutional goals in mind, our team designed a new facility with 500 square foot classrooms, a full-service kitchen, spaces for student counseling, visiting family members, and other areas for the unique challenges facing low-income students. Classrooms and labs are arranged at the perimeter of the building and include glass garage doors that allow the educational space to extend into the corridors and provide for a variety of teaching and learning modalities.

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