Liberty City

In September 2011, FIU and Miami-Dade County Public Schools established The Education Effect, a university-supported community school partnership to improve educational outcomes in schools throughout the Liberty City neighborhood of Miami. Sparked by a three-year seed investment from the JPMorgan Chase Foundation, the partnership connects the community, Miami Northwestern (MNW) Senior High School, and its feeder elementary and middle schools, students, and parents with university expertise, resources, and research-based intervention programs to address pressing educational and social needs of students.

The program’s successes include supporting increased high school graduation rates from 64% to 82%, support in achieving a “B” grade from the state, and providing MNW students with increased dual enrollment college courses.


  • Aquaponics Lab and Organic at MNW, an integrated program for advancing STEM education and healthy living in Liberty City, in collaboration with the College of Arts, Sciences & Education and the Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management.
  • Expanding opportunities for MNW students to take college courses for college credit while in high school through Dual Enrollment.
  • Service Learning: FIU and MNW students participate in classes where academic learning outcomes are integrated with civic engagement.
  • “Panther for A Day” College Visits & Advising: strategic early college exposure and advising interventions for students from MNW and feeder middle schools.
  • College and Career Readiness.
  • Internships.


Miami Northwestern Senior High School has served as a center of pride for our Liberty City community. ‘The West’ was always known as a powerhouse for athletics - and it still is. Today, Miami Northwestern has renewed its goal - to become a powerhouse in academics as well. The Education Effect has emerged as a change agent to support 'The West' as academic champions.

Wallace AristidePrincipal, Miami Northwestern Senior High School

When I walked into Miami Northwestern, it was as if there was a sense of opportunity at that school... it was as if that school was going to take me where I needed to go... The Education Effect has brought me to places I had never thought possible. I didn't know that I was going to be in an Agroecology program at FIU and have a $26,000 scholarship. When I was younger I always dreamed of being in the medical field. Now I am actually going towards my dream.

Angie FleurissaintMiami Northwestern Senior High School, Class of 2012