Development: Student Activities » Student Wellness Works Program

Student Wellness Works Program

Student Wellness Works (SWW) formalizes our ongoing enrichment programming and supplements our Expanded Core Curriculum to help ensure students' long-term success and promote positive mental health outcomes. Current program offerings include residencies, workshops, presentations, field trips, and career exploration opportunities. 

Greenburgh Nature Center (March - June 2023) 

Building on our longstanding partnership with the Greenburgh Nature Center, onsite programming expanded during the spring of 2023 to include gardening classes for our middle and high school students. These 45-minute sessions focused on native plants and exploring the life sciences. Program highlights included purchasing and installing a hydroponic system for students to grow and harvest strawberries. Additional activities included planting seeds, seedlings, and native plants in our greenhouse, vegetable and sensory gardens and meeting the occasional animal or two. Learn more about the the Greenburgh Nature Center here:


Entropy Dance Company (February - April 2023)

Helping our students learn about dance as an art form, Artistic Director and dancer/choreographer Valerie Green taught creative movement classes to some of our middle and high school students. These classes spanned eight weeks exploring different dance styles and techniques. Students practiced and strengthened their locomotor and motor skills through these classes while having fun and building their self-esteem. Learn more about Entropy Dance Company by following this link:


Mindfulness in Motion: Celebrating World Cultures (February - March 2023)

Owners Beth and Scott met with students to provide them with movement-based classes featuring improvised and choreographed dances, games and simple yoga poses. Focused on helping students develop a mind-body connection, reduce stress and make safer, healthier decisions, a key take-away from each class was how to use the STOP technique: Stop, Take three breaths, Observe, Proceed/Pick. Learn more about Mindfulness in Motion: Celebrating World Cultures by following this link:


Omnium Circus

Omnium Circus led activities for our summer students during a two-week residency culminating with a student performance. Advocating that a circus experience with a full spectrum of people representative of our global culture as artists, staff, and audiences leads to a truly diverse, equitable, inclusive, and accessible society, students were delighted to learn a few circus tricks of their own to the delight of their peer and teachers. Learn more about Omnium Circus by following this link:

Children’s Author Andrea Davis Pinkney (March 2024)

Andrea Davis Pinkney visited and spoke with students and staff to celebrate Women’s History Month and READ Across America 2024. The program will include Andrea’s biography, a book discussion, Reading, Women’s History, and Diversity. Featured books included Pinkney's A Poem for Peter: The Story of Ezra Jack Keats and the Creation of the Snowy Day and Let It Shine: Stories of Black Women Freedom Fighters. Learn more about Andrea Davis Pinkney by following this link:


Harlem Magic Masters 

Athletes from the Harlem Magic Masters presented an assembly for students designed to educate, stimulate, and motivate them and provide opportunities for them to practice strong interpersonal communication skills. Using a combination of dazzling basketball techniques, this assembly was delightful and fun for all involved. 

Learn more about the Harlem Magic Masters by following this link:


Mariachi Real De Mexico

Celebrating National Hispanic Heritage Month, Mariachi Real De Mexico! performed for students and staff, sharing the rich heritage of mariachi that dates back to at least the 18th century.  Considered the leading Mariachi ensemble in the North East, Mariachi Real De Mexico has been performing Mariachi music and dance and sharing their Mexican culture for over 30 years. Learn more about Mariachi Real De Mexico by following this link:


Asase Yaa Cultural Arts Foundation (February 2023) 

Artists from the Asase Yaa Cultural Arts Foundation led four classes for our middle and high school students, focusing on proper technique and posture for playing the Djembe. Through this process, students gained an understanding of the djembe's culture, purpose, and principles and were able to identify rhythms, rudiments, and three basic sounds. They also learned about the importance of empathy towards other cultures and how to use drumming to promote their self-esteem, cope with anxiety, and have fun. Learn more about the Asase Yaa Cultural Arts Foundation by following this link:


Thunderbird American Indian Dancers (2023)

Celebrating Native American Heritage Month, the Thunderbird Native American Indian Dancers performed for students and staff, sharing their history, dancing, music, and instruments and answering questions. They are the oldest resident Native American dance company in New York and are descended from the Mohawk, Hopi, Winnebago, and San Blas tribes. Learn more about the Thunderbird American Indian Dancers by following this link:



Educators from PFLAG met with students, teachers, and their families to learn about the LBGTW community and help the students explore resources they may not have known about. Learn more about PFLAG by following this link:

NYISE Alumni returned to speak about their path following graduation and professional career(s) thus far. These presentations take place over Zoom or in person and help students prepare for the transition to college. 


Topics covered included:

  • Choosing a college and area of study
  • Advocating for accommodations
  • Securing a job interview
  • Interning and Volunteering


Past Speakers are listed below:


Alison Hannigan

Graduating class of 2022

Film School 


Alvin Suarez

Graduating class of 1989

Band Director/Lead Guitar, Los Ciegos Del Barrio


Angela Villota

Graduating class of 2017 

Employment Specialist, Visually Impaired Advancement (Buffalo, NY)


Charlene Wright

Graduating class of 1983 

Owner Nell's Kitchen (food truck/catering) &  Exotic Eatz (Catering)


Christine Bharosi

Graduating class of 2015 

Currently exploring career opportunities

Fordham University, Master's Degree, Cyber Security


Daniel Ramirez

Graduating class of 2005

HVAC installation Technician


Edwin Soto

Graduating class of 1990 

New York State Licensed Bail Bond Agent


Jamal Rymer

Graduating class of 2014 



Kevin Figueroa

Graduating class of 2019



Lassana Fisiru

Graduating class of 2020

Student at Seton Hall, Communications Major, Business Administration Minor


Michael (Mike) Dinoski

Graduating class of 2012

Administrative Coordinator, New York Presbyterian Hospital


Nefertiti Matos Olivares

Graduating class of 2003. 

Voice artist specializing in audio description narration


Raven Velez

Human Rights Specialist, NYC Commission of Human Rights


Rosalind Wright

Graduating class of 1983 

Vocational Assistant, NYISE


Sarai Ramirez

Graduating class of 2017

Intern, Tomkins Square Middle School

Fordham University School of School Counseling 


Venessa Luna

Graduating class of 2015

Catholic Charities

Pursuing her graduate degree in Social Work

Thank you to our presenters, who provided students with helpful and insightful information on transitioning to college and the professional world.
We asked speakers to share one thing that they hoped students took away from their presentations. Their answers are below:
"I hope that the students realize there are so many more opportunities beyond the world they currently know and that they will have plenty of support from their community to take advantage of those new opportunities."

"What you do today will impact you tomorrow. Do your best to make good choices, and don't give up when things get hard."

"That they'll get where they're going, even if they don't know where that is yet.
The importance of self-advocating and how you need to ask for the things you need to help you be successful."

"I hope the students learn to keep an open mind and don't give up. Life will through curve balls at you, and you'll fall down sometimes, but the most important thing is that you get back up."
To learn more about how we help students explore possible careers, visit our Students: Personal & Professional Development webpage.
New York Botanic Garden
The New York Botanic Garden is less than 1 mile from our campus, and easily accessible for students and teachers to visit. Field trips to explore the garden foster students participation in a variety of activities, including learning about different biomes as part of their high school science curriculum. 
In addition to activities on-campus, we encourage students to explore virtual and in-person activities during afterschool hours, including those at the museums and cultural institutions listed below:
American Museum of Natural History
Bronx Museum of Arts
Liberty Science Center
Metropolitan Museum of Art
Museum of the Moving Image
New Victory Theater
Whitney Museum of American Art


Yoga for Teens with Adrienne (YouTube):

Yoga for Blind and Visually Impaired Sharing Community with Namaste Nadine (YouTube):


Socialization, Friendships and Teens

Student Wellness Works is made possible through a generous grant from the Mother Cabrini Health Foundation.
Named after a tireless advocate for immigrants, children, and the poor, the Mother Cabrini Health Foundation funds programs and initiatives across New York State that either provide direct healthcare services or address the social determinants of health.
For more information, visit
Mother Cabrini Health Foundation Logo