Access Youth Academy “Tops Off” New Squash Athletic & Academic Center in Southeastern SD

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The organization had a “topping off ceremony” at the construction site last month. Pictured from left to right: City of San Diego Deputy Chief Operating Officer Erik Caldwell; Jacobs Center for Neighborhood Innovation Community & Economic Development Officer Christie Marcella; Access Youth Academy Executive Director Renato Paiva

As part of the Town Center Master Plan, Jacobs Center for Neighborhood Innovation is proud to support Access Youth Academy as the organization works to complete its new squash athletic and academic facility in Southeastern San Diego. With the support of a $5.5 million grant from the City of San Diego, Access Youth Academy is constructing a gathering space that can be enjoyed by the entire community. This new facility is scheduled for completion in June 2021.

Founded in 2006, Access Youth Academy is a nonprofit organization dedicated to transforming the lives of underserved youth aged 12 and over through a continuous life-skill and real-world preparedness program focused on the sport of squash. The Access Youth Academy offers sports training, academic support and financial guidance to help youth reach their full potential.

The new facility will allow Access Youth to serve first-generation college students, provide services to thousands of at-risk youth, provide multi-use facilities and offer a variety of outdoor activities – all at no cost! Its impact has been phenomenal thus far, resulting in a 100% college acceptance rate for all program participants since the program began. Access Youth students have been accepted to and earned degrees from some of the best schools in the nation, including Columbia, Dartmouth, Cornell, UC Berkeley, UC San Diego and more.

The beautifully designed two-story structure will include sports, academics and business activities around a glass-walled entry and open reception and lounge area. It will include two wings, with squash courts, locker rooms, showers, classrooms, support rooms and more. Additionally, there will be a spacious courtyard with extra seating and social areas, including a 36-car parking lot. It is located in a vacant lot at 704 Euclid Avenue, which Access Youth Academy purchased from the Jacobs Center for Neighborhood Innovation.

To learn more about Access Youth Academy or how to get involved, visit: accessyouthacademy.org. Additional information can be found by viewing the organization’s fact sheets: Our Impact and Get to Know Us.

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