By Mike DeNardo, Erika von Teihl
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Students at Philadelphia’s new Catholic high school, Cristo Rey in North Philadelphia, were matched today with their work-study programs in an NFL draft-style ceremony.
In an intentionally over-the-top ceremony complete with a countdown clock, representatives of 20 businesses stood at the podium this morning and called the names of the Cristo Rey students they’ll be employing this school year.
In return for a day of work each week, the businesses pay part of the students’ tuition.
Jack Pierce (center of photo below), a partner at the law firm of Saul Ewing, drafted four students.
“I think this is a special opportunity for us to help the community in a very direct way, and really change the lives of these kids,” Pierce tells KYW Newsradio.
“It feels great — I’m happy for it,” says Thomas Schultz (far left in photo), among the 125 freshmen learning their new workplaces, “and I think it’s going to be a great opportunity.”
Cristo Rey runs 25 Catholic schools nationwide. The school at Broad and Duncannon Streets is its first in Philadelphia.