On any given day, Edwin Scott can be seen playing mathematical and word games with the youth of the Phipps Neighborhood P&J Beacon, offering support and guidance to his staff, and showing extreme sensitivity when addressing parents and their concerns. As Beacon Program Director, Edwin goes beyond the call of duty to ensure the well-being of his students, staff, parents, and community members. He is a role model, mentor, father, brother, teacher, and friend to all who know him.
Mentored by some of the pioneers of youth development, Edwin has dedicated his life to the field and has been affiliated with the New York City Beacons programs since their inception 25 years ago. When Edwin entered the P&J Beacon when it was near closure. Edwin revitalized and reenergized the program, transforming it into a critical hub for the Throggs Neck Community. The children that walk through the doors of the P&J Beacon consider it to be a second home, as Edwin ensures that it is a place where children are respected and are able to be themselves.
Edwin promotes leadership through coaching and educating his staff from a strengths-based perspective, and in turn, his staff model the same behavior with the youth in their programs. He is known for being innovative, responding to the needs of his community with a wide variety of activities that help children to thrive, including robotics, STEM, chess, theatre, dance, and more. He spearheaded the renovation of the school yard of the I.S. 192 campus, where the P&J Beacon is housed. Once an empty space, it is now a lively space with trees and a garden where students socialize on benches, sit in the gazebo, or walk the track.
One of Edwin’s proudest achievements is the creation of the Buddies Program, a program designed to bridge the gap between senior citizens from the community and the youth from P&J. This creative intergenerational program has already received the Program of Distinction designation from Generations United. This designation, developed and launched in 2010 with support from the New York Life Foundation, serves as the U.S. benchmark for intergenerational programs.
“I do not think that there has been an idea for a program Mr. Scott has not entertained,” said a parent of a student at the P&J Beacon. Generous, kind, and thoughtful, Edwin has impacted many. In his own life, he has witnessed how the people beyond home have enriched his life. As he recognized the value of afterschool, he felt that he had “no choice” but to come back and to teach.
Edwin earned his bachelor’s degree from Hamilton College, and a Master’s in Public Administration from Audrey Cohen College (now Metropolitan College).