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The Afterschool STEM Mentoring Program (ASMP)

Created in partnership with the Department of Youth and Community Development the Academy’s Afterschool STEM Mentoring program recruits inspiring young scientists and engineers to work with underserved elementary and middle school students in New York City and Newark. Graduate students, postdocs, and STEM professionals apply to become mentors, and those accepted into the program are paired with students for once-weekly afterschool sessions through organizations like the YMCA and the Boys and Girls Clubs. Mentors work in pairs to teach a variety of curriculum ranging from genetics to space science and can receive an Academy Mentoring Credential for completing a semester of teaching and training.

Learn more about the program in the video below.


For more information about this program, contact

Apply to Become an ASMP Mentor

We are currently accepting applications for the 2018-2019 school year.  If you are interested in becoming an ASMP mentor, don’t hesitate to apply! Additionally, if you would like to be notified when other mentoring opportunities arise, visit our Mentor Opportunities page, click on the NOTIFY ME button, and select the box for “In-Person” opportunities.

Afterschool STEM Mentoring
Afterschool STEM Mentoring

Why become an ASMP mentor?

Hone your coaching and communication skills.

Mentors receive training and hands-on experience in pedagogy and youth development 

Broaden your resume.

Mentors who complete 30 hours of mentoring and training during a single school year will receive a New York Academy of Sciences Mentoring Credential.

Make a difference!

By serving as a positive role model of a real-world scientist or engineer, you can inspire curiosity and excitement about STEM topics, and positively influence the career aspirations of students from underserved communities.

What are the requirements for becoming a mentor?

ASMP mentor applicants must be:

  • Undergraduate students, graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, or professionals in a STEM field…
  • Within commuting distance of New York City or Newark, New Jersey
  • Interested in inspiring 4th through 8th graders to love science
  • Completed applications must include a brief letter of support from the Mentor’s supervising scientist acknowledging their weekly commitment to the program. Letters should be emailed to with the subject line "Mentorship Letter of Support" in conjunction with the submission of the online application. Please contact us if you have questions about this requirement.
  • All applicants must complete a background check through the Department of Health (at no cost to the mentor), as well as submit a health form signed by a physician.

How much time is involved?

Mentors complete a one-day, in-person training session to become familiar with the STEM lessons included in each year’s curriculum, as well as a short online tutorial on youth development and pedagogy. Once the training is complete, Mentors work with afterschool program directors at each site to schedule weekly mentoring sessions at a time that suits both the mentor and mentee’s schedule. (Some travel is required, but program partners are matched based on proximity.) Mentors teach weekly 45–60 minute sessions from November through April.

How do I apply?

We are currently accepting applications for the 2017-2018 school year.  If you are interested in becoming an ASMP mentor, don’t hesitate to apply! Additionally, if you would like to be notified when other mentoring opportunities arise, visit our Mentor Opportunities page, click on the NOTIFY ME button, and select the box for “In-Person” opportunities.

Students in our Afterschool STEM Mentoring program may choose from among the curriculum options listed below. All are hands-on, dynamic, lessons designed to take advantage of the resources and technologies available in participating afterschool locations. After months of partnership and collaboration with mentors and their peers, students present a capstone project to showcase new knowledge.

(* = current curricula for 2017-2018 school year. Click this link to apply!)

STEM Bonanza *

The STEM Bonanza is an opportunity for students and mentors to share a project or lesson with parents, peers, and other mentors. The event, which concludes each year’s Afterschool Mentoring Program session, inspires leadership and a sense of pride and accomplishment for students and mentors, and allows students to show their families the result of their hard work during the school year. To find out how you can participate, email us at

Oysters and Restoration Ecology *

Aimed at restoring one billion live oysters to New York Harbor, the Oyster Restoration Ecology project is a hands-on experimental and educational program that engages thousands of students in the New York City area.  From Oyster dissection and anatomy to modeling the effects of runoff and growing live oysters, students become active participants in restoring one of New York’s vital waterways.

Innovation *

The Global STEM Alliance (GSA) of the New York Academy of Sciences has developed an Innovation Curriculum to engage teens and young adults in real-world problem solving. This unique offering provides opportunities for students to build STEM content knowledge and 21st-century skills through collaborative inquiry-based learning, that can be taught in the classroom or club settings.

DIY STEM: Sports in Science, Football *

Developed in partnership with the Victor Cruz Foundation and the Boys and Girls Club of Patterson, NJ, this curriculum focuses on fundamental principles of physics and mechanics, including how Newton’s Laws of Motion apply to the sport of football, and how weather conditions can impact a ball’s speed and trajectory.

Brain 101 *

Brain 101 is an immersive journey through the human brain. Students learn about neurons by recording electrical impulses from insects and constructing neuron models, then move into a hands-on dissection and modeling of a sheep’s brain. Additional units of study include lessons on the sensory and motor systems, as well as memory, learning, and sleep.

Life Sciences 101 *

This lab-based program helps students develop a basic understanding of biology, genetics, and the structure of cells.

Code Club

Code Club is inspiring a new generation of computer coders around the globe by empowering volunteers to teach workshops for students ages 9-11. Students learn Scratch, HTML, and Python while designing games, building websites and creating animations.

Building 10x Solutions

These workshops encourage students to devise solutions to humanity's most difficult problems through ideas and strategies that aren’t just big—they’re exponential.  These 10x workshops tackle issues from climate change, urbanization and zero waste initiatives.


A re-created crime scene is the setting for lessons in the forensics skills used in real-world criminal investigations.  Students will learn about classic forensic lab techniques including DNA barcoding and fingerprint identification.


Students will explore how the nutrients found in food allow the body to grow and function. Through reflective journaling and free-choice activities, students gain a holistic appreciation of their food choices.