Public School Partnerships

Meaningful partnerships lie at the foundation of the work that we do. In recognition that we all benefit by forming one community of learners, our partnership with the New Haven Public Schools is founded on the goals of promoting access, communication, shared resources, and mutual learning.

In 2010, the University announced a commitment as the primary sponsor of the New Haven Promise, a visionary scholarship and support program that promotes college education for New Haven students. This partnership now serves as a model for similar programs around the country. Following a meeting at the White House, during which National Economic Council Director Gene Sperling prompted discussion about the New Haven Promise, Yale President Peter Salovey remarked, “I am delighted to report that there was a high level of interest in what we are doing here in New Haven. If we can be a model for other universities and public school systems in developing innovative programs and pathways to educational achievement, I’m all for it.” Through New Haven Promise, eligible New Haven public school students receive full scholarships for tuition to any Connecticut public college or university, or a partial scholarship towards a private university education.

Public School Partnership Programs

  • Cancer Research Opportunities For Youth

    Cancer Research Opportunities for Youth (CROY) provides New Haven Pathways to Science high school students with hands-on experience, mentoring, and collaboration within the cancer research pipeline. These laboratory internships embed students within research teams engaged in all aspects of cancer research including immunology, prevention and control, genetics and epigenetics, radiobiology and radiotherapy, developmental therapeutics, and more. 

  • Celentano Biotech, Health, and Medical Magnet School Partnership

    Yale’s partnership with Celentano School is designed to supplement the school efforts in implementing a new biotech, health, and medical magnet theme. In the first year of the partnership, teachers participated in professional development workshops to delve into biotech curriculum and, with the support of Yale’s Marsh Botanical Gardens, constructed a school community garden as a tool for hands-on science instruction.

  • Citizens-Thinkers-Writers

    Citizens-Thinkers-Writers is a two-week summer residential program for students from New Haven public schools who are interested in exploring fundamental human questions in a college setting. In small seminars led by Yale professors, students gain invaluable experience in close reading, analytic writing, and college-level discussion. During the program, students actively participate in a long-running philosophical conversation that dates back to ancient Greece and Rome and link this conversation to their own experiences. After completing the summer program, students become CTW Fellows and continue to work with the faculty, undergraduate residential teaching assistants, and graduate coordinator throughout the academic year.

    For more information, click HERE

  • Code Haven

    Code Haven is an undergraduate student organization at Yale University dedicated to introducing students to computer science starting at a young age. Every week, Yale students teach computing lessons at five schools in the New Haven district, engaging middle school students with online lessons, group activities, and class-wide demonstrations.

  • Code Haven TeachTech

    TeachTech is Code Haven’s one-day conference for middle and high school teachers interested in incorporating computer science curriculum into their classrooms. Teachers learn about computer science fundamentals, how to demonstrate these concepts to students in an engaging way, and basic software that they can implement in their classrooms to make CS more appealing to students.

  • Cooperative Arts & Humanities High School Partnership

    Now in its sixth year, Yale’s partnership with Cooperative Arts and Humanities High School aims to enrich the artistic and educational experiences for Co-Op High School students and faculty by developing meaningful collaborations between the Yale and Co-Op communities. Flagship partnership programs include the O’Neill Playwriting Program, the Yale Co-Op Dance Collaborative, and the Artist-In-Residence program. The partnership is supported by various stakeholders including the Beinecke Library, the Yale School of Drama, the Yale University Art Gallery, the Yale Center for British Art, the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History, and Dwight Hall at Yale. 

  • Design for America

    Design for America (DFA) is a national organization with chapters in universities throughout the country. DFA Yale is a diverse group of undergraduate and graduate students who use design to change lives in ways both big and small. The group focuses on teaching design thinking through hands-on projects that aim to improve the New Haven community. DFA also holds workshops for local students focused on human-centered design, where they work in groups to design and build product prototypes.

  • Dwight Hall at Yale, Center for Public Service and Social Justice

    Dwight Hall is an umbrella community service organization featuring more than 90 student-managed member groups that engage Yale University students in contributing more than 150,000 hours of direct service each year, in tutoring, mentoring, youth development, and advocacy. 

    Please visit for more information. 

  • Engineering Explo

    At Engineering Explo, GradSWE (Graduate Student Women Engineers) invites middle school students to discover the marvels of engineering. At this fair-like event, Pathways students and families grab a “passport” and explore mechanical, electrical, biomedical, chemical, and environmental engineering through hands-on activities and demonstrations.

  • Flipped Science Fair

    The Flipped Science Fair, hosted by Yale Science Diplomats, flips the traditional science fair format on its head: middle school student judges evaluate graduate students and postdocs presenting their current research. Middle school students learn about cuttingedge research from real Yale scientists in a small-group setting, with plenty of opportunities to ask questions and participate in hands-on demonstrations. The presenters learn how to tailor their research pitch to a general audience, with emphasis on keeping things exciting, understandable, and relevant.

  • Graduate Student Women Engineers

    GradSWE at Yale is part of the Society of Women Engineers, an international organization committed to promoting women in engineering. Together with Pathways to Science, GradSWE runs numerous Engineering Days for middle and high school students throughout the year. The goal of Engineering Day is to show attendees that learning a new skill to a level that lets them build a real robot or conduct a true scientific experiment does not need to be intimidating. You do not need to be a physician to start tinkering with medical devices nor do you need to be a programmer to automate a small task in your daily life. Past projects include programming a self-watering garden and building an air quality monitor.

  • Hill Regional Career High School Partnership

    The Yale partnership with Hill Regional Career High School, a health sciences magnet school in New Haven, provides more than 200 high school students with the opportunity to spend time on Yale’s campus in classes, laboratories, and structured internships during the school year. Each year 20 Yale faculty members and 50 Yale undergraduate, medical, and nursing students support eight different courses, including Human Anatomy and Physiology, that are offered for credit at the school. 

  • MedSci

    MedSci is a student-run organization that teaches elementary school students interesting and useful health skills using a scientific lens. In MedSci sessions, fourth and fifth-grade students are introduced to biological concepts using health examples they can relate to, such as fevers and allergies. The program is free for participants and is currently available in the New Haven area.


  • New Haven Promise

    Yale is a founding and primary sponsor of the New Haven Promise, the only scholarship program of its kind in Connecticut. Promise provides scholarships for New Haven residents who are graduates of New Haven Public Schools and selected charter schools. Students meeting certain achievement, attendance, community service, and disciplinary requirements are eligible for full tuition for in-state public colleges or up to $2,500 annually for in-state private colleges. In the first four years of the program, nearly 600 students are now pursuing higher education with a Promise Scholarship. A key to New Haven’s future, Promise is revitalizing the city of New Haven by increasing educational attainment, cultivating a culture of college-readiness, and promoting community and parental engagement. Yale University contributes up to $4 million annually to provide Promise Scholarships to New Haven graduates. 

    For more information, visit

  • Pathways Discover Chemistry Day

    At Discover Chemistry Day, Pathways high school students take part in hands-on chemistry experiments, including experimentation with a gas chromatographer, chemical separation of caffeine from tea, simulations of receptor binding molecules that give rise to our sense of smell, and more. This annual event is hosted by the Department of Chemistry and the graduate student-led Chemistry Education Group.

  • Pathways Environmental Café

    The Environmental Café brings Pathways high school students to the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies to listen to short talks about new and exciting work in the department. Graduate students from FES also provide hands-on workshops related to the café talks. Previous topics include how scientists use X-rays to study plant evolution, how to 3D print a flower, and how drones are used in forest management. Students are also invited to attend the annual School of Forestry & Environmental Research Day.

  • Pathways Exploring the Intersection of Physics, Engineering, & Biology

    An annual event for Pathways middle school students, Exploring the Intersection of Physics, Engineering, & Biology allows students to interact with Yale scientists working at the intersection of these fields. Students learned how to build a balloon powered car and watched demonstrations such as “Fluorescence: Glowing in Science” and “Viewing the Nanoscopic World.”

  • Pathways Ophthalmology Day

    Aimed at increasing interest in ophthalmology, Pathways students are invited for a full day of hands-on learning about the eye. Students travel into the eye using virtual reality devices, are trained on slit lamp machines, and try their hand at cow eye dissection. This event is hosted by the Yale Department of Ophthalmology and the Yale League of Black Scientists.

  • Pathways Play Cafés

    Hosted by the Yale Center for Health & Learning Games and the play2PREVENT Lab, Pathways middle and high school students are invited to explore how video games can be used to change the way people think and act. Students learn how games are created, why they are important, and how doctors, mathematicians, and scientists use them for their jobs. Students also play games created by the play2PREVENT lab.

  • Pathways Reproductive Physiology Day

    Pathways high school students are invited to discover the science of reproduction with Yale Medical School Faculty. Students use microscopes to identify different cells of the reproductive tract, as well as learn the differences between human and other mammalian reproduction.

  • Pathways Summer Scholars Program

    The Pathways Summer Scholars program brings 100 high school students from New Haven, West Haven, and Amity Public Schools to study science for two weeks on Yale’s campus. The goal is to prepare motivated and academically promising students for success in college and to strengthen their ability to pursue science majors and careers. Summer Scholars provides an intensive, hands-on science curriculum that emphasizes discovery, critical thinking, and problem solving. Rising seniors have the opportunity to live on campus during the program and engage in a variety of college prep enrichment activities. The curriculum is designed by Yale University faculty, graduate, and professional students, and teachers from local public schools. Yale students serve a vital role as teaching assistants and mentors.

  • Pathways to Science Festival @ West Campus

    Pathways middle and high school students are invited to this annual festival at Yale West Campus for a full day of lectures, hands-on demonstrations, student panels, science exploration games, and tours of the stateof-the-art West Campus facilities. The event invites 150 Pathways students to explore Yale West Campus with the guidance of over 50 Yale scientists and students. Past themes for the festival include “Microbes - The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly” and “Colors & Dyes in Science.”

  • Pathways Wright Laboratory Tour

    Pathways students get a behind-the-scenes look at the Wright Laboratory and undertake hands-on activities that reveal how Wright Lab researchers can make the invisible visible. The Wright Lab is advancing frontiers of physics through a broad research program in nuclear, particle, and astrophysics. Wright Lab has been transformed to house a unique combination of state-of-the-art research facilities, technical infrastructure, and interaction spaces.

  • Play2Prevent Lab - ForAGirl Program

    Part of the Yale Center for Health & Learning Games at the Yale School of Medicine, play2PREVENT focuses on the use of videogame play for the purposes of health promotion, risk reduction, social good, and educational interventions. ForAGirl engages female Pathways high school students in a two-week, summer research training in developing effective videogame interventions that target improving areas in which girls and women are disproportionately impacted. Female Yale faculty members provide guidance and mentorship.

  • Research Experience For High School Students (REHS)

    The CRISP (Center for Research on Interface Structures and Phenomena) High School Research Fellowship provides rising high school juniors and seniors with the opportunity to conduct team-based interdisciplinary materials science research. Participating students conduct a four-week research project as members of a research team that also includes university faculty, graduate, and undergraduate students.

  • STEM Mentors

    Stem Mentors is a graduate student organization that aims to promote interest among female and underrepresented students in pursuing STEM careers. STEM Mentors connects students with college and graduate students at Yale pursuing STEM majors to challenge common misconceptions about the sciences and about the people who study them. STEM Mentors hosts a variety of events throughout the year, including a panel discussion on choosing the right college, a college application workshop, and a health sciences career fair.

  • Yale Center for Analytical Sciences

    The YCAS Young Scholars program brings together a collaborative group of eight to ten high school students primarily from the greater New Haven area. For two weeks in the summer, students participate in an intensive introduction to biostatistics, learn the statistical modeling program R, and explore aspects of public health. Young Scholars provides an intensive, hands-on science curriculum that emphasizes discovery through lab tours, critical thinking and problem-solving, lunch lectures, and faculty-led programming sessions. scholars/index.aspx

  • Yale Physics Olympics

    The Yale Physics Olympics brings more than 100 high school students to compete in teams on a variety of physics-related tasks, focused on getting students to practice the skills of experimental physicists. Each year, 50 teams guided by a high school teacher, compete. Awards are given to the best three performing teams.

  • Yale Reading Corps at Wexler-Grant School

    Through the Yale Reading Corps, two dozen Yale undergraduates serve directly as teaching assistants in classrooms at Wexler-Grant School—they are a teacher’s right hand in the classroom for several hours per week. Fully integrated into the educational environment, students support the teacher’s activities by helping prepare class materials or working with individual or small groups of students. In addition, the program supports the school’s literacy efforts by hosting Family Literacy Nights and sponsoring book fair events for students to expand their home libraries. 

  • Yale Summer Science Research Institute

    The Yale Summer Science Research Institute (SSRI) connects highly qualified New Haven high school students with science research internships at Yale. During the summer, students participate in a series of workshops and activities to supplement their internship experiences and enhance their scientific research skills. Students are paired with Yale undergraduate mentors, who provide oneon-one guidance throughout the six-week internship experience.

Yale University: Contributing to a Strong New Haven