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NEW YORK – May 12, 2011 –Students and faculty members at Brooklyn’s Bushwick Leaders’ High School celebrated the opening of its new state-of-the-art library and multimedia center today due to a gift from JPMorgan Chase and its extensive network of strategic partners.
During the past eighteen months, a team of JPMorgan Chase employees, led by Chief Administrative Officer Frank Bisignano, worked with a number of strategic partners to completely redesign the east wing of the high school, which had been abandoned and deemed unfit for student use. The space now boasts a state-of-the-art library, including a multimedia theater, wireless laptops with connectivity in two lounge areas, four additional computer workstations for internet use, scanners to check-out books, and 23 bookcases stocked by the Robin Hood Library Initiative – a nonprofit program that provides underfunded New York City Schools with reading materials.
Bisignano got the idea for the project after serving as “Principal for a Day” at the school through PENCIL, a nonprofit that teams business leaders with Principals to improve New York’s public schools. Since partnering with the school in 2006, Bisignano and PENCIL have helped modernize the school by donating 75 laptops for its computer lab, in addition to renovating this new space. He has also worked with the school’s principal, Catherine Reilly, to develop college preparedness and after-school support programs for students, and provide technology and financial literacy training for students and parents.
“Technology is an essential part of everyone’s education,” said Bisignano. “Gone are the days when libraries only housed books and card catalogues. Technology is changing the way students learn and libraries need to be updated to reflect that. JPMorgan Chase is proud and honored to work with our partners to help Bushwick Leaders’ be a model for what a modern library should look like.”
“When our school moved into this beautiful old building nearly five years ago, we had almost no technology and were the only high school in Bushwick without a library,” said Catherine Reilly, Principal of Bushwick Leaders’ High School. “Thanks to the generosity of JPMorgan Chase and its large network of partners, we are now a model for new technology in New York City’s school system.”
Admission applications at Bushwick Leaders High school has more than tripled since 2006.
“Bushwick Leaders’ new library and multimedia center will give students the critical tools they need to succeed in the 21st Century,” said PENCIL President Michael Haberman. “As one of nearly 400 PENCIL Partnership throughout New York City, the collaboration between JPMorgan Chase and Bushwick Leaders High School is a shining example of the truly transformative impact that can be achieved by leveraging the talent, expertise, and resources of the private sector on behalf of our public schools.”
The JPMorgan Chase team was assisted by these strategic partners: Architectural Flooring Resource, Inc.; A-V Services, Inc.; Capital Moving & Storage Co., Inc.; Cosmopolitan Decorating Co.; DFB Sales Inc.; DSI Video Systems, LLC; Eagle Master Signs & Awards Inc.; Gensler; Highland Associates; J.A.D Contracting, Inc.; Klearview Appliance; Knoll Inc.; Milrose Consultants Inc.; P.E. Stone Inc.; Robin Hood Foundation; Thornton Tomasetti; Turner Construction Company; Video Corporation of America.
About JPMorgan Chase & Co.: JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM) is a leading global financial services firm with assets of $2.2 trillion and operations in more than 60 countries. The firm is a leader in investment banking, financial services for consumers, small business and commercial banking, financial transaction processing, asset management and private equity. A component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, JPMorgan Chase & Co. serves millions of consumers in the United States and many of the world’s most prominent corporate, institutional and government clients under its J.P. Morgan and Chase brands. Information about JPMorgan Chase & Co. is available at www.jpmorganchase.com.
Michael Fusco, (212) 270-5089,
PENCIL inspires innovative solutions to the challenges facing public education by providing results-driven opportunities for the private sector to actively participate in transforming public schools. Our programs share a common premise: by bringing together the best ideas, talent, and resources across sectors, we can create real change in our schools. To learn more about PENCIL or to get involved, visit or call 646-638-0565.
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