Breakthrough New York Names Beth Onofry Executive Director

Breakthrough New York serves 500 New York City students from low-income families, annually, shepherding them from middle school to and through college and into careers

Beth Onofry

(New York, N.Y.) — Breakthrough New York (BTNY), a New York City-based college success nonprofit, has named Beth Onofry its next Executive Director. Ms. Onofry brings more than 15 years of leadership experience in both the higher education and nonprofit sectors, helping students access outstanding educational opportunities and reach their full potential. Selected following a national search, Ms. Onofry will start at BTNY on March 1, 2018.

“Beth’s vast experience and expertise in the college access field, along with her thoughtful leadership style, make her the perfect fit for our organization,” said Bonnie Litt, BTNY’s Board Chair. “She is uniquely suited to hit the ground running and guide our families, staff, and Board of Directors to new heights.”

BTNY transforms the lives of talented kids from low-income backgrounds by providing educational support from middle school through college and into careers. The organization also inspires talented young people to enter careers in education through its unique students-teaching-students model.

Ms. Onofry has spent the last 11 years at The TEAK Fellowship, a college access and success non-profit in New York City that helps bright and motivated students from low-income families. At TEAK she served in a variety of roles, including dean, college counselor, and director of a six-week academic program for middle school students. Most recently as TEAK’s Deputy Director of Academic Programs and Student Support, Ms. Onofry served on the senior leadership team and managed program staff and student programming and support.

“I am delighted to join such a caring and dedicated community of Breakthrough New York students, staff, families, board members, and school partners to help more talented students achieve their potential, break the cycle of poverty, and effect positive change in the world around them,” Ms. Onofry said.

Prior to joining TEAK, Ms. Onofry worked in Admissions at Dartmouth College. She earned a Bachelor’s degree at Dartmouth, a Master’s degree in Education at Harvard, and a Master’s degree in School Counseling at Long Island University. Originally from upstate New York, Ms. Onofry now lives in Harlem with her partner.

Ms. Onofry succeeds Rhea Wong, who served as BTNY’s executive director from 2005 through the end of 2017. During her successful tenure, Ms. Wong grew BTNY’s annual budget from $250,000 to $2.7 million; added new program sites in Brooklyn and the Bronx; and, greatly increased both the number of students served and the scope of support they receive.

BTNY was founded 19 years ago at The Town School on the Upper East Side, and originally was called Summerbridge. In 2012, it opened a second site, at Bishop Loughlin Memorial High School in Fort Greene, Brooklyn, and then three years later, launched at a third site in the Bronx.

Students in the program receive rigorous summer academic programming, after-school tutoring, test prep, high school and college admissions guidance, financial advisement, internship placements, and more. As a result, 100% of BTNY students go to college prep high schools and four-year colleges. In 2015, the organization expanded services beyond high school, to help students all the way through college graduation.

Demand is steep for BTNY’s services. Most recently, the organization selected 90 new students from 294 applications.

About Breakthrough New York

Breakthrough New York (BTNY) transforms the lives of talented kids from low-income backgrounds by providing educational support from middle school through college and into careers. BTNY also inspires talented young people to enter careers in education through its students-teaching-students model. The organization’s goal is to create leaders who break the cycle of poverty in their families and effect positive change in their communities. Learn more at www.btny.org. Follow BTNY on social media: Facebook – Instagram – Twitter @BreakthroughNY

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