A Legacy of Learning: From KIPP Student to KIPP Parent
We recently sat down with Nicole Britton-Snyder, a dedicated mother, attorney, and proud alum of KIPP Academy in New York. Nicole’s journey spans multiple generations and brings to light the transformative impact of education on her own life as well as her son’s. From a KIPP student in the Bronx to a dedicated KIPP parent in the Bay Area, Nicole’s story is a testament to the enduring power of education and community.
Becoming a KIPPster
Nicole’s journey with KIPP began in 1995, when she joined the first class at KIPP Academy in the Bronx, New York. Nicole’s family instilled in her a strong commitment to education and higher learning. She was excited at the opportunity to attend KIPP Academy and appreciates the structure and values it instilled in her, which continue to guide her to this day.
KIPP continued to support Nicole after graduation as she pursued higher education and her dream of becoming an attorney. After she finished her undergraduate degree at Cornell University, the KIPP Through College (now KIPP Forward) program played a pivotal role in helping her navigate the complexities of law school applications. Nicole shared, “KIPP was helpful for me as I was navigating law school applications. I applied to law school and social work school at the same time. When I needed help studying for the LSAT to apply to law school, KIPP supported me to do that.” Nicole ultimately attended Northeastern University School of Law where she received the prestigious Public Interest Law Scholarship, a full tuition scholarship.
“When I needed help studying for the LSAT to apply to law school, KIPP supported me to do that.”
She now works as a managing attorney in Oakland at a non-profit that specializes in domestic violence advocacy where she oversees the agency’s legal department. Her commitment to social justice, women’s rights, and her familial connection to domestic violence is a driving force in her career.
Finding the right school for Nicole’s son
Nicole is now a parent to a son on the autism spectrum. Her family faced ongoing challenges while her son was enrolled at a traditional public school, where support was lacking and services were difficult to receive. This experience left Nicole and her husband feeling overwhelmed and worried; however, they knew that with the right resources and support, their son would be able to thrive at school.
Nicole happened to see a local news segment on television highlighting a student with autism’s positive experience at KIPP Bridge and she knew that she wanted to enroll her son immediately. She submitted an application and her son was able to join KIPP Bridge for the new school year.
After an Individualized Education Program (IEP) meeting with her son’s teacher, Nicole shared, “…the IEP meeting was amazing. They are going to give him a paraprofessional full-time for the whole year… I was just so floored and so grateful. Kids are able to succeed because there’s staff who’s dedicated and there are multiple resources available.” The impact of KIPP on her son’s life became evident within weeks. Nicole saw positive changes in her son, from his eagerness to go to school, to minimal meltdowns during the day, to his newfound love for math.
“I was just so floored and so grateful. Kids are able to succeed because there’s staff who’s dedicated and there are multiple resources available.”
She loves the welcoming and inclusive atmosphere she encountered at KIPP Bridge. The sense of community and dedication to every child’s success, regardless of their needs, is a cornerstone of KIPP’s mission.
Fulfilling KIPP’s promise
Nicole’s remarkable journey from a KIPP student in the Bronx to a dedicated KIPP parent in the Bay Area highlights the enduring impact of KIPP’s mission. Her story is a testament to the power of education, resilience, and the unwavering belief that every child deserves the opportunity to thrive. As KIPP continues to support students across generations, Nicole and her son’s experiences serve as inspiring examples of the positive change that can happen when students are given the tools and resources they need to succeed.