Bryn Mawr Strengthening Partnerships with Norristown Elementary Schools

Posted October 6th, 2011 at 3:15 pm.

CEO Staff recruiting for GASP at Customs Week Cambrian Row Open House

GASP! The Bryn Mawr College Civic Engagement Office is developing a new community partnership program with Gotwals Elementary School in Norristown, PA. The program, Gotwals After School Program, or GASP, puts Bryn Mawr volunteers into the established Gotwals Elementary after-school program that is designed to build the literacy skills of first- and second-graders.

Bryn Mawr students will act as mentors, tutors, and teachers to the Gotwals students. With a one-to-two ratio of college students to Gotwals students on any given day, volunteers will have the opportunity work closely with their students and develop rewarding, long-term relationships.

“GASP will give Bryn Mawr students a large amount of responsibility in planning and running the after-school program,” says Margo Schall, the graduate-student partnership coordinator for GASP. “Volunteers will also work with Gotwals students, staff, and parents to develop and shape the future of the after-school program, which is very exciting.”

Gotwals is a K-4 elementary school that serves approximately 360 students. It is one of  many community partners that work with Bryn Mawr through the Civic Engagement Office. Many Bryn Mawr students taking Praxis courses have completed their field placements at Gotwals Elementary, and the CEO administers a “Playground Pals” volunteer program at the school. Other partnership schools that the CEO works with are the Belmont Charter School in Philadelphia, Roberts Elementary School in Wayne, Overbrook Elementary and Overbrook High School in Overbrook, and Parkway West High School in West Philadelphia.

For more information on volunteer opportunities at Gotwals, or more information on the Civic Engagement Office, contact Margo Schall (
— Ellie Rhymer ’12

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