At Pittsburgh Hardball Academy, we use the game of baseball as a conduit to develop well-rounded young men and increase future academic and professional success. A significant focus of our organization is ensuring our student-athletes are given the tools they need to succeed both on and off the field.
We do this via our FOCUS program, Facilitating Opportunities for College & Universal Success. The FOCUS program is designed for our for middle school, high school, and young adult participants. Please see information below on the three pillars of the FOCUS Program:
Career Readiness & Workforce Development
Social Enrichment & Civic Engagement
The ACT and SAT play a huge role in the college application process. However, studies show youth from underrepresented and underserved communities, particularly minorities, face an unfair bias when taking the test. We partner with academic organizations, including Fund for Advancement of Minorities through Education (FAME) and Goldstein Test Prep to help combat these biases via ACT/SAT Prep courses.
COLLEGE FAIRS & TOURS
To ensure our youth are aware of the many different types of colleges and universities they can attend, we conduct college tours on a group and individual basis. In addition, we work with partner organizations to ensure our student-athletes are able to attend local college fairs to further increase their awareness.
COLLEGE APPLICATION AND FAFSA CONSULTING
Our team assists students and their families navigate the college application and FAFSA process, providing hands on guidance and resources.
STEM, STEAM, AI, Robotics offerings
Via a partnership with the Boys and Girls Clubs of Western Pennsylvania, all of our members have free access to BGCWPA STEM, STEAM, AI & Robotics offerings.
While our youth are student-athletes today, they are also the region's future business leaders, doctors, engineers, entrepreneurs, etc. Our goal is to expose our student-athletes to many career paths by visiting companies in the region and shadowing professionals in different industries.
Nearly 25% of Americans have no savings and 40% do not have a budget. These statistics are even worse in underserved and minority communities. Through partner organizations, we provide financial education to our student-athletes and their parents in order to buck this trend and prepare them for a healthier financial life.
Pittsburgh Hardball Academy has a network of employers that we connect our graduates / college participants with. To date, participants have received opproutnties with several Fortune 500 Comapnies. In addition, we provide in house internship opportunities within our organization.
Paying it forward. We will ensure that our student-athletes learn the importance of giving back to the communities they are from through structured service learning projects.
Our student-athletes will have access to mentoring via the following channels:
Unofficial mentoring from our alumni & college-aged student-athlete-mentors
Official mentoring program through partner organizations, including Boys and Girls Clubs of Western Pennsylvania.
SEXUAL VIOLENCE TRAINING
Through partnerships with PAAR and Coaching Boys into Men, we will introduce Sexual Violence prevention and awareness into our programming to provide student-athletes, coaches, and staff with age-appropriate training around Sexual Violence.
SOCIAL MEDIA TRAINING
Social media has become a major part of all of our lives. While social media has many benefits, there are several pitfalls that can negatively impact quality of life and potential next-level opportunities. Our staff and partner organizations will provide training for our student-athletes on how to avoid these pitfalls and use social media appropriately.