apply as a student

The 2017-2018 btny application is now open!


Thank you to all of the teachers, counselors, parents, and 6th grade students who have reached out to learn more about our program.

Any 6th grade student in NYC who meets the eligibility requirements below is now able to apply to BTNY through our FormAssembly Application. Part I of the BTNY Application is due by Friday, December 22nd at 11:59PM EST.

BTNY Information Sessions

Do you and your family want to learn more about Breakthrough before applying? Still not sure if it's the right fit for you? Come to one of our Information Sessions across the city in November to learn more about the admission process, the services we offer to students and families, and meet some of the BTNY staff!

need help on your application?

Do you have a question about how to complete our application? Below you'll find our Guide to the Breakthrough Application. Reference it while you complete your application for tips on how to complete it to the best of your ability!



 Breakthrough New York (BTNY) is currently seeking exceptional 6th grade students to select the next cohort of 100 students to become the Class of 2028! We are excited you are interested in our program and look forward to supporting you throughout the application process.

In order to learn more about our programs, click here to download our 2017-2018 Student Recruitment Packet (Spanish version available here!)


The Application Process

 As of November 6th, our application will be open to the public for interested candidates to apply at

 Our application process will consist of three rounds:

·       Round 1 – Submit Part 1 of Application (Biographical / Demographic, Academic, Family Information, including Household Income)

·       Round 2 – Submit Part 2 of Application (includes Application Essay, Short Responses, Guardian Responses, Writing Sample, Teacher Recommendations)

·       Round 3 – Invitation to Interview

 After each round, an applicant’s submitted material will be reviewed and evaluated by BTNY Admissions and a decision will be made as to whether or not the applicant will advance to the next round. Our admission process is holistic, which means that all parts of an application will be considered before making a final decision.

Application TimelinE

  • October 16th – November 3rd: Early Nominations accepted, BTNY application open for early nominees
  • November 6th: 2017-18 BTNY Application is open to the public
  • December 22nd (Extended from December 8th!): Part I application deadline at 11:59pm EST
  • December 15th: Eligible Part I applicants invited to Part II (if application was completed by December 8th)
  • December 29th: Eligible Part I applicants invited to Part II (if application was completed between December 9-22)
  •  January 19th: Part II application deadline at 11:59pm EST
  • February 19th: All Part II applicants are notified and finalists are invited to interview
  • April: Finalists participate in an Admissions Interview Day
  • By May 4th: All finalists are notified and the 100 6th graders are admitted to the program.

BTNY Eligibility Criteria

We use the below standards to determine eligibility for BTNY.  Our eligibility terms are designed to best identify students who come from underserved backgrounds, yet have proven themselves to be capable of achievement at the point of sixth grade.

To be considered eligible for Breakthrough New York:

A student must meet all of the terms below: 

·       Be a current resident of New York City (reside in one of the five boroughs)

·       Be enrolled in the 6th grade in a NYC public, charter, or parochial middle school at the time of application

·       Have proven citizenship status (either a U.S. Social Security or Green Card number)

·       Have an 80% or better in ELA, Math, Science, and Social Studies on their most recent report card

·       Have score a 3 or better on their 5th grade state ELA and Math tests

·       Be able to attend all programming dates, including 6-week summer program (Monday – Friday 8am-4pm) and after-school program (Monday and Wednesday 4:30pm-6:30pm)

·       Come from a household whose income is less than $20,000 per person

A student must meet at least two of the terms below:

·       Identify as an English Language Learner

·       Will be the first in family to attend four-year college in the U.S.

·       Qualify for Federal Free or Reduced Lunch program

·       Live in a single parent household


Frequently Asked Questions: 

My student is not in 6th grade this year.  Are they still able to apply? 

Students may only apply to Breakthrough New York when they are currently enrolled as a 6th grader in a NYC-area public, charter, or parochial school.  If your student is younger than 6th grade, please keep us in mind for the future!  If your student is older than 6th grade, click here for a list of other NYC-area programs you may want to consider.  

My student is not able to attend all of the programming dates.  Are they still able to participate?  

Students must be able to attend 100% of our programming once they are admitted. It is important that your family can support this commitment before you choose to apply.  

My student is applying to Breakthrough New York, and prefers to be placed at one site more than the others.  Can I apply to only one site?  

All applications submitted to BTNY are reviewed by our admissions team at our network office.  Applicants are asked to submit their site placement preference, which we take into account in making our final decisions. 

Breakthrough New York Site Locations:

Manhattan – The Town School, Upper East Side, 540 East 76th Street and York Avenue

Brooklyn – Bishop Loughlin Memorial High School, Fort Greene, 357 Clermont Avenue

Bronx – Bronx Center for Science and Mathematics, Bronx, 1363 Fulton Avenue

If you have any other questions about our program, admissions process, or your application, email us at [email protected]