Why are we Masa?

We are Masa because we advocate for one of the largest communities in New York.

We are Masa because we believe that helping children reach their full potential will transform an entire community.

We are Masa because we are pursuing a common goal together.

We are Masa because we believe in connecting families to the power of education and community action.

We are Masa because we want to nurture tomorrow’s leaders.

We are Masa because we believe that every child can learn, and deserves that chance.

Our Challenge

New York City’s Mexican community has grown faster than any other major ethnic group over the past two decades — to nearly half a million people — while the drop out rate is far too high.

In 2010, some 41% of New York City’s sixteen- to nineteen-year-olds of Mexican descent have not graduated from and are not in high school. That’s the highest proportion of any major ethnic group in the City.

Masa, founded in 2001 as the Mexican American Students’ Alliance, wants to reverse these alarming trends. Our network of dedicated volunteers helps us support the academic achievement of underserved students, especially those of Mexican descent. They also help Masa foster community engagement and leadership among our students and their families.

To learn more about the educational needs of New York City’s Mexican community, read Kirk Semple’s New York Times article, “In New York, Mexicans Lag in Education.” Key members of MASA’s leadership were interviewed for the piece.

Our Mission

The mission of Masa is to promote educational attainment, committed leadership and civic engagement among underserved students living in New York City, with a particular focus on those of Mexican descent. Through a variety of civic and educational partnerships, Masa provides positive guidance and support for underserved youth and their families. We encourage program participants to strive to their fullest potential by setting and achieving academic goals in our tutoring and mentoring program. Furthermore, by fostering cultural and civic awareness, we empower a future generation of active and involved citizens.