Chester City Mayor John Linder to Speak at “Roots to Branches” Tap Garden Reception on June 15, 2013

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Celebration of TAP’s Third Graduating Class; Honoring of Past and Present TAP Board Members and Volunteers

Chester City Mayor John Linder will be the keynote speaker at a Garden Reception entitled “Roots to Branches” for The Achievement Project (TAP) on Saturday, June 15, 2013. TAP is an academic and educational advancement program that works with young people of the city of Chester, PA. This year-round program operates after school and during the summer. It includes tutoring, coaching, classes and enrichment experiences. The students are recruited in the 8th grade and participate in the program through their four years of high school and through the college application and admission process.

“(Mayor) John Linder is currently a retired Professor of Social Sciences at Delaware County Community College, Media, Pennsylvania. He holds a B.A. degree in Behavioral Sciences from Widener University, a Certificate of Training in Family Therapy from Catholic University, Washington, D.C., and a Master's degree in Higher Education and Counseling from Kutztown University. His special skills in individual and group counseling, alcohol and drug education, and marketing and resource development, have led to extensive consulting initiatives in these areas. He has written and co-authored a number of publications relating to student development, the helping relationship and peer pressure,” according to his office.

TAP is the brainchild of Nicola Tollett Jefferson, a former practicing attorney turned child-education advocate. Nicola first tutored Harlem students as a law student at Columbia Law School in New York City. She watched with great joy as a young woman made the transition from underperforming in a less-than-stellar school, to eventually becoming a college professor in Florida and author of two books. “It’s absolutely amazing,” says Ms. Jefferson, “What the power of education can do for a young person who faces formidable social, economic and educational challenges. Those of us who hail from more economically privileged backgrounds can easily fail to comprehend what kids of poor to modest means have to go through, not just to survive, but to thrive and be successful. These young people, just as young people everywhere, have tremendous gifts, attributes and talents. TAP’s mission is to help them realize their gifts,” says Jefferson.

“We are thrilled to have Mayor Linder give our keynote address,” says Nicola Jefferson. “The Mayor truly understands the needs of the children of Chester. He strives each day to make this city a better place for them; a place where they can grow and learn, with the hopes of sending them off into the world to help others achieve their goals.” One such graduate is John Miller. John is a graduate of TAP’s first “cohort.” John looks back on his experience and cites TAP for making a difference in his life, “TAP was very influential in directing me towards higher education. It encouraged me to receive degrees and pursue my doctorate in higher education.” TAP graduate Tanaya Payne agrees, “TAP prepared me not only for regular high school, but also for college. It made me more mature and more responsible.”

Rounding out the event will be a grateful citation to past TAP officials and a special announcement regarding a substantial grant, which TAP has received from the Fordham Street Foundation.

This event will take place at The Swarthmore Presbyterian Church, 727 Harvard Avenue, Swarthmore, PA. The reception will begin promptly at 2:00 p.m. on June 15, 2013 with a brief program at 2:30 p.m., and close at 3:30. Join us for gracious-living refreshments with a “Southern Afternoon Picnic.” Delicious delicacies indigenous to our southern neighbors will abound. Admission is free of charge, but an R.S.V.P. is required for admission to this event. Kindly R.S.V.P. to staff(at)tapofchester(dot)org. Tax-deductible donations are not required, but enthusiastically accepted.

This event is made possible through the kindness of our sponsors, Ms. Nicola Tollett Jefferson, The Williams Group and other generous individuals and businesses. To find out more about TAP, please visit their website at TapOfChester.org or call Nicola Tollett Jefferson at 484-995-0828.

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For more information on this release, contact Melinda Williams at The Williams Group, 610-518-4888 or visit http://www.thewilliamsgroup.info. For event information and reservations, please contact TAP at TapofChester.org or 484-995-0828.

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Kirsten McCurdy

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