UPLIFT Program

Contact Us

For more information about UPLIFT and/or for a program application, please contact the Program Coordinator, Denise Rawles-Smith (drawles-smith@norwalk.edu | 203.857.7361)

West Campus 
Room W117

The UPLIFT program at Norwalk Community College is designed to recruit, retain, and graduate men of color from NCC.  UPLIFT provides academic support and guidance to help students improve their academic performance and self-confidence. NCC will maximize the involvement of participants by increasing their knowledge and understanding of themselves, promote leadership skill, and encourage educational pursuits.


UPLIFT, through a holistic approach, will empower, educate, provide leadership, and motivate male students of color through active engagement by promoting an inclusive, supportive, and welcoming environment to increase student success by creating a culture of high achievement and high expectation for men of color.


There has been national attention focused on men of color.  Research has shown that male students of color particularly African American and Latino males are completing college at a much lower rate than their white peers. As part of Norwalk Community College’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, the college launched a Men of Color Initiative in February 2021 called UPLIFT.  The program is designed to empower, inform, and encourage men of color to reach their highest academic potential.

Our Services

One-on-one Academic Advising & Coaching

To ensure academic success, students will meet with the Program Coordinator on a regular basis.

Mentoring Program

The Mentoring program pairs students with professionals and alumni to help students with their educational and career goals.

UPLIFT Talks/Workshop Sessions

The program will offer a variety of virtual workshops to expose students to the necessary skills to succeed in college.

Referrals to On Campus Resources

All students will be properly referred to different campus resources to ensure they have all the resources they need.

Our Open-door Policy

The UPLIFT Program has an open-door policy. Student are encouraged to stop by the office and meet with a staff member.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Registered at NCC for the fall 2021 semester
  • Self-Identify as a Man of Color (i.e. Black/African American, Hispanic/LatinX, Asian, Indigenous, Pacific Islander etc.)
  • Commitment to participate in program offerings

UPLIFT Internships

Paid on campus internship opportunities up to 10 hours a week are available for interested students. Students will have the opportunity to learn valuable work experience in various areas of the college.