Program Details

Pathfinder is a fun, challenging after-school & summer program that prepares high-achieving 5th-8th graders from families without a lot of money – to dream, learn, and succeed.

• Cost: $0

• Percentage of Applicants Admitted: 30%

• Grades Required for Admission: straight A’s

• Essays Students Must Write to Apply: 1 long essay, several short ones

• Commitment: 4 years. 5th grade through 8th grade. See below for details.

SUMMER: 5 weeks in July & August

• Schedule: Monday - Friday, 8:00am–4:00pm

• Hours of homework per night: 2-2.5

• 5th–6th grade Subjects studied: 
Humanities, Math, Latin, Reading/ELA, computer programming, plus enrichment classes

• 7th–8th grade Subjects Studied: 
English, Math, History, Science, SSAT prep & enrichment classes

• Summer Fun Stuff: field trips, extra-curricular activities, surprises, celebrations

AFTER SCHOOL: January - May

• 6th – 8th grade: Thursdays, 4:15pm–5:50 pm
• Hours of homework per week: 1-5

• Subjects studied: math, creative writing, chemistry, robots, computer programming, SSAT prep

High School Admissions Counseling is free and helps families make informed choices about the educational options available. We assist with the admissions, financial aid and scholarship application processes.

Total Prep School Scholarships Awarded to Pathfinder Alumni Since 2009: $9.7 million

Long-Term Outcomes for Pathfinder Students:

• Percentage of Pathfinder HS Class of 2013
at a School with 100% College Matriculation: 93%

• Percentage of Pathfinder Alumni Who Graduated College in 4 years: 86%



“Through Pathfinder, kids become more grounded in their dreams and have a clearer vision of how they want to go about achieving those dreams.”
~ Pete Butler, Community Dean, Elm City College Prep
“Pathfinder changed the way I interact with people. I was real shy before. After going to Pathfinder and feeling comfortable with my abilities, I started to blossom and think of myself as smart.”
~ Darrell, Pathfinder alumnus, student at Cheshire Academy
“I saw the lightbulb go on the first day my son was there and surrounded by all those folks.”
~ Darrell Draughn, parent
“People think Middle School’s not important, but what you do now really sets you up for how your life’s going to be.”    
~ JNisha, Pathfinder Alumna, student at Lafayette College
“Even though it was a very rigorous program, they also had fun. My son actually looked forward to going. It helped him develop personally. He wanted to give back more because of what he received through Pathfinder, so he volunteered throughout his freshman and sophomore year.”
~ Doreen Spence, parent
“It helped me interact with my teachers, ask for more help, or ask for more work if I needed it.”
~Maria, Pathfinder Alumna, student at Albertus Magnus College
“It definitely was the switch that turned my life into one of academic rigor.”
~ Matt, Pathfinder alumnus, student at Harvard
“It makes me feel wonderful that they have more options available to them and more doors open.”
~ Angelina Dusa, Counselor, John S. Martinez School
“Pathfinder became a match made in heaven for my son. Not only did he excel, but all these different prep schools wanted him. I’m all excited because now my son is getting ready to graduate from Princeton.”
~ Odell Cohens, parent
“Locally, it’s among the best free academic programs available.”
~ Julie Greenwood, New Haven Squash
“It’s been incredible seeing that transformation of students who started the program in 7th grade and now are in high school.”
~ Sarah Crilley, Director of Graduate Support, St. Martin DePores Academy