Photo by Clay Banks on Unsplash

100 high school students to participate in mentoring support for younger students through the Library’s unique Teen Reading Ambassadors program

The New York Public Library is excited to announce the expansion of its NYPL After School program for the 2023–24 academic year from 32 branches to 50 locations in historically marginalized areas throughout the Bronx, Manhattan, and Staten Island. The program is scheduled to start on Monday, October 2.

NYPL After School, a Tisch Youth Education Program, offers free drop-in after-school support for students aged 6–12. Operating Monday to Thursday after regular school hours, the program provides a diverse range of engaging resources and services. Students will receive guidance from skilled tutors and near-peer support from the Library’s Teen Reading Ambassadors, a unique initiative that fosters job readiness and leadership skills for New York City teens.

Students will receive homework assistance at select locations, as well as reading suggestions, creative writing resources, programs that feature STEAM activities, and enriching workshops. The full list of participating branches and new locations opening is available here.

Complementing NYPL’s After School growth is the expansion of the Library’s Teen Reading Ambassadors program, which will this year add an additional 30 teens to the program, increasing the number to 100. Participating high school students are recruited as paid part-time staff by the Library to act as mentors and role models for younger students, as well as serving as advocates for the Library’s mission to support a lifelong passion for reading and learning. Teen Reading Ambassadors also write and edit Portal, a magazine for children published annually by the Library.

“The growth of NYPL After School and the Teen Reading Ambassadors program represents the extraordinary support our neighborhood libraries provide communities across the City. We are proud to offer meaningful opportunities to develop a love of learning for both children and teenagers. And we remain committed to creating and offering widespread access to resources and services that engage New York City’s students and allow them to advocate for their own success and development,” said Brian Bannon, the Merryl and James Tisch Director of Branch Libraries and Education at The New York Public Library.

For more information about back to school support provided by the Library—including NYPL After School and the groundbreaking Teen Reading Ambassadors program—please visit

The Teen Reading Ambassadors program is part of the Library’s Teens 360º initiative, also a Tisch Youth Education program, which aims to provide holistic support for teen patrons through an expanding range of programs, services, and resources as teens continue to deal with the socio-emotional and educational impacts of the pandemic. This support encompasses college and career prep, learning resources, and access to welcoming spaces at the newly enhanced Teen Centers at select locations across the city, which offer access to facilities including 3-D printers, photo and video equipment, and audio recording capabilities. 

The Tisch Youth Education Programs are part of the Library’s overall commitment to lifelong learning and education, led by the Merryl and James Tisch Director of Branch Libraries & Education, a position established with a gift from James Tisch and Dr. Merryl Tisch. That investment builds on, expands, and strengthens the Library’s robust work in the areas of early literacy, summer learning, adult literacy, digital equity, and technology training by developing innovative, cohesive programs coordinated across the Library’s network of branches and research libraries ​to educate learners of all ages. 

Major support for educational programming is provided by Merryl H. and James S. Tisch.

Major support for children’s and young adult programming is provided by the Andreas C. Dracopoulos Family Endowment for Young Audiences. 

Major support for youth education is provided by Arthur W. Koenig; the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF); Mr. and Mrs. Timothy R. Barakett Endowment for Children’s and Young Adult Programs and Services; The Gottesman Fund; the Best Buy Foundation and the Joly Family Foundation, Mr. and Mrs. Evan R. Chesler;, Robert A. and Elizabeth R. Jeffe Foundation; and Michael ByungJu Kim and the MBK Educational Foundation. Lead support for Teens 360º is provided by the City of New York. 

About The New York Public Library

For over 125 years, The New York Public Library has been a free provider of education and information for the people of New York and beyond. With over 90 locations—including research and branch libraries—throughout the Bronx, Manhattan, and Staten Island, the Library offers free materials, computer access, classes, exhibitions, programming and more to everyone from toddlers to scholars. To offer this wide array of free programming, The New York Public Library relies on both public and private funding. Learn more about how to support the Library at 

Leave a Reply