Rising sixth-grader Jasyn Truitt just wrapped up his first year at Wilmington’s Nativity Prep, calling the experience “awesome.” His schoolmate Christian Mezquita-Medina was so impressed with his seventh grade math class that he remarked, “I learned about things I used to believe only a genius could learn.”
This spring, Nativity Preparatory School of Wilmington, a tuition-free Catholic middle school for boys, graduated nine boys like Jasyn and Christian who, inspired and propelled by their experience at Nativity, have been accepted at prestigious local private schools including Archmere Academy, Sanford School, Tower Hill School, St. Mark’s and Salesianum.
Another eight Nativity alumni graduated from local high schools this year and will be heading to college in the fall, joining 27 Prep alums who are already there.
Given those results, Nativity may be one of Wilmington’s most extraordinary educational success stories.
Founded by the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales (of Salesianum School), the school educates and develops students who have not been afforded many opportunities in life, doing so regardless of a boy’s faith. Nativity’s incoming president is former Head of Tatnall School Dr. Eric Ruoss.
One school alum, Ryan Washington, was a leading member of the Sanford School class of 2017 and will be attending Franklin and Marshall College in September. Below, Ryan reflects on his formative experience at Nativity Prep and how its “unique mission” and talented, caring teachers helped him build confidence and achieve great success both in and outside of the classroom in high school.
Investing in Success by Building a Foundation at Nativity
Nativity Prepatory School provided me with many academic and cultural experiences which I embraced, and I am now looking forward to the many exciting opportunities that are coming my way.
My Nativity teachers worked so hard to challenge me academically. I remember Ms. Vernon who would sit outside and listen while I read books aloud to her, Ms. Valk who would spend extra time helping me with my independent reading and math, and Mr. Winchell who recommended that I apply for A Better Chance, a program that helps students of color attend top high schools. Working with A Better Chance and using the resources at Nativity, I was afforded the opportunity to attend Sanford School on a full scholarship.
Sanford was challenging in so many ways, and it was only because of Nativity that I was prepared to success socially and academically there. Nativity also empowered me to explore my talents beyond the academic ones. That is why at Sanford I was able to thrive as a vocalist, actor and orator. Recently, I ranked in the top six in the state for poetry recitation in Delaware’s Poetry Out Loud contest. I performed in numerous musicals, including Titanic the Musical, All Shook Up, Mame and just recently, Anything Goes. I am also the fourth ranked tenor in the state.
Nativity has continued to invest in my success even after I graduated. This year, for example, they connected me to TeenSHARP, an organization that helped me and other Nativity students gain admission into top-tier colleges. As a result, I am thrilled to have been admitted to the Class of 2021 at Franklin and Marshall College.
I am extremely humbled to have utilized all the resources that Nativity Prep and its generous supporters have provided. I look forward to continue to build upon this foundation as I begin my journey as an undergraduate student pursuing a degree in business with a dream of becoming a real estate business owner.
Nativity is a unique school with a unique mission. It is in the business of giving a chance to talented students to realize their full potential. I am excited to see the community of Nativity alumni grow and expand and hope to one day give back to the institution that set me on the right path!
Nativity Prep Class of 2017
Mashon Tiller Jaeden Fitzhugh Andrew Deloatch Nysamere Ridley Brian Carbajal
Zyairr Bissoon Jordan Burden-Patrick Sahaj Singh Daniel Nelson
2017 High School Graduates
Daniel Adams (DH Conley) – National Guard/East Carolina University
Justin Campbell (Salesianum) – University of Delaware
Hunter Coverdale-Sams (AI du Pont) – Wesley College
Elijah Hailey (Salesianum) DeSales University
Tywann Harrell (Sanford School) – University of Delaware
Emmanuel Martinez (Thomas McKean HS) – US Marine Corps
Abdul Ogembe (Tatnall) – Stevenson University
Ryan Washington (Sanford) – Franklin and Marshall College