You have the chance to change a life

You have the opportunity to help change someone’s life, and it won’t cost you a penny. All you have to do is tell someone you know about the School Sisters of Notre Dame Educational Center for Women right here in Woodhaven.
Perhaps you know a woman who never got the opportunity to finish high school. That diploma can often be the key to a better future, it can open the door to better job opportunities or maybe even a promotion at a current job. A high school diploma can be the first step in going to college.
In less than a month, the School Sisters of Notre Dame Educational Center for Women will begin holding open registration for their tuition-free classes for the 2021-2022 school year.
To ensure the safety of all students, you must have proof of vaccination in order to attend classes at SSNDEC Woodhaven.
The School Sisters of Notre Dame Educational Center offers classes to prepare women to take the TASC (formerly the GED). To register, visit the center at 87-04 88th Avenue across from St. Thomas the Apostle Church on Monday, September 13, between 9:30 a.m. and 1 p.m.
The classes are for women 20 years or older, who are committed to working toward their high school diploma and can attend classes from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Thursday.
They should also have sufficient reading and writing skills in English to work on the high school equivalency curriculum.
If you know someone whose English skills need some work, or perhaps they cannot speak the language at all, the School Sisters also offer ESL (English as a Second Language) courses.
Again, these classes are tuition-free and offered at six levels, from Introductory to Level 5. Classes are scheduled between Monday and Thursday, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The schedule will vary depending on the level.
All women must take a placement test to determine their level. This test will be given on Tuesday, September 14, at 10 a.m. and again in the afternoon at 1 p.m.
What a difference you could make in the life of the person you share this information with. Not only will it make a difference in the life of that person, but the impact will be felt by their children and the entire family.
Changing the lives of women and their families was exactly what SSNDEC executive director Sister Catherine Feeney had in mind when she and her fellow sisters opened the educational center in 2003 in Ozone Park.
In those early days, the center had just over a dozen students and it was strictly a GED program.
In short order, they also saw a need for an ESL class so they could serve a larger segment of the community. The classes were such a hit they soon needed to find larger quarters, and that’s what brought them to Woodhaven, taking up residence in the former convent that was the home to the nuns that taught in St. Thomas the Apostle.
After the move to Woodhaven, the School Sisters had the room to expand. And with convenient access to transportation – it is near the J train and the Q56 bus along Jamaica Avenue, the Q11, Q21, Q52Ltd, Q53Ltd, and QM15 along Woodhaven Boulevard, and the Q24 along Atlantic Avenue – they were able to greatly increase the number of women they could help.
Well over 2,000 women have been helped by the School Sisters in the years since they opened their doors. And as a byproduct of these classes, their children and entire families are helped. As a result, this can only help improve our neighborhood.
I have been honored to see the students of SSNDEC over the years thrive in the warm, encouraging environment provided by the teachers there.

If anyone has any questions or would like to RSVP for the open house, the School Sisters of Notre Dame Educational Center for Women in Woodhaven can be reached at (718) 738-0588 or email at Visit their newly renovated website for more information.