From Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg to pop icon Lady Gaga, the Center for Talented Youth (CTY) at Johns Hopkins University has nurtured some of the world’s top minds, and this year, is setting its sights on students from the territory’s public schools.
Approximately 83 students from Addelita Cancryn (31), John H. Woodson (14), Elena Christian (9) and Arthur A. Richards (2) junior high schools, along with Bertha C. Boschulte Middle School (21), and the Julius Sprauve School (6) on St. John took the test Friday to qualify for CTY’s summer program, which offers a firsthand look at the college environment and the opportunity to participate in actual classes.
Each student taking the exam was hand-selected by their principal and, according to Education officials, scored in the top 5 percent in reading and math on the 2011 VITAL (V.I. Territorial Assessment of Learning).
“”These students are trailblazers,” Education Commissioner Dr. LaVerne Terry said Friday. “They are taking a path our public school students never had the opportunity to follow before, and they are showing a tremendous degree of courage by stepping outside the box and jumping at this opportunity.”
Terry led the charge for a partnership with Johns Hopkins after a donation from an anonymous benefactor made it possible for the students to participate in the CTY program. Officials from the department and Johns Hopkins met with the students and their parents for the first time in mid-January, after the selections were made, and Terry said Friday that there was a great amount of enthusiasm for the effort.
Johns Hopkins representatives were also on hand Friday to administer the qualifying tests, which had students sitting down to solve another set of challenging math and language questions. Students were given a practice test beforehand to stretch their mental muscles, and had the opportunity to get some guidance by the university’s visiting staff.
“We see this is a great opportunity for us, and we are very excited about getting these students involved in the program,” said Karen Bond, CTY’s senior director of external eelations. “Our goal is to identify bright children throughout the U.S. and globally, and we think it’s wonderful to have so many exceptional young men and women sitting with us here today.”
The Center for Talented Youth (CTY) is a gifted education program for school-age children, founded in 1979 by Dr. Julian Stanley at Johns Hopkins University. It was initially a research study of the rate at which gifted children can learn new material, but became the first program of its kind to identify academically talented youths and provide learning opportunities. CTY offers numerous programs around the world and online but is best known for its fast-paced summer programs, which are held on many university campuses throughout the United States and the world and serve over 10,000 students each year, according to an entry on Wikipedia.