spotlight stories

spotlight on social work: tutoring

While dynamic Boatbuilding, Environmental Science and Sailing Programs are Rocking the Boat’s main gigs, our overall goal is to holistically support our students as they move through high school and help them make plans for their next steps. For the past year, a group of dedicated mentors and tutors has worked one-on-one with interested students, helping them improve in a particular academic subject, read their draft college essays, or prepare for Regents.  The program is becoming more popular with our students and more volunteers are needed!  Explore the Q&As below, and please reach out to Liz Lindgren,This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., if you would like to apply.


Q: How much time is required?
A: Just one hour per week, plus travel time. Both students and volunteers commit to working together for a semester, which lasts 13 weeks in the fall and spring and seven weeks in the summer.  At the end of each semester, our social workers will sit down with the pair to talk about next steps.

Q: Do you offer training?
A: Rocking the Boat offers frequent orientations that go over volunteer roles, boundaries with students, and the overall Rocking the Boat Youth Development programming structure. We want this process to be as supportive as possible for volunteers, and our social work team will always be here to back you up.

Q: When and where does tutoring take place?
A: Tutoring takes place at Rocking the Boat’s Hunts Point headquarters, 812 Edgewater Road, between the hours of 4:30 and 7:30 pm Monday through Thursday during the spring and fall, 10 am to 4 pm during the summer.

Q: Do you need help in any particular subject?  Do I need to be an expert?
A: Students come in looking for help in a wide range of subjects—algebra, geometry, trigonometry, physics, chemistry, biology, global and U.S. history, English—and at levels from survey to advanced placement.  We will take good care that you are matched with a student whose needs correspond to your abilities.

Q: What have volunteers gained from being tutors?
A: Volunteers have shared that they love making a real and immediate impact on their tutees, and being an adult they can count on.  Volunteers have also enjoyed attending our community-wide events like weekend Community Rowing and Sailing and Spring Fest boat launches (the next one is June 3!).

“Tutoring has been helpful to me by helping me understand the history of the United States. My relationship with KC is pretty close when it comes to learning.  Tutoring has benefited me by helping me see that I understand the subject more than I thought.”

Bryant Jara is in his fourth semester in the Sailing Program

"Tutoring at Rocking the Boat appealed to me because I wanted to volunteer in a way that allowed me to connect with the participants.  I never expected how much I would learn from my student or the sense of pride I would feel seeing his progress over the past year."

KC Skolnik, Senior Manager of Operations at Success Academy Charter Schools, is Bryant’s tutor

kids don’t just build boats, boats build kids

rocking the boat
812 edgewater road
bronx, ny 10474
phone: 718.466.5799
fax: 718.466.2892