Our Mission

Comprehensive Youth Development partners with NYC public high schools to prepare young adults, ages 14- 24, to secure a successful future for themselves and their families. Through this partnership, our students develop the capability to graduate from high school and make informed decisions on higher education and careers.

Responding to COVID-19

Comprehensive Youth Development is rising up to meet the challenges Covid-19 has left in its wake. We are working remotely to provide the same intensive, individualized assistance that we provide in person when onsite at our schools. Our students share their own words how they’ve been impacted – and how they’ve been helped.

A message from Michael Roberts, Executive Director:

Forging paths to success

Since 1995, Comprehensive Youth Development (formerly Comprehensive Development, Inc.) has worked with and for underserved youth ages 14-24, dismantling the barriers to high school graduation and paving the way to pursue further education or a career with future potential.

In partnership with three public high schools, Comprehensive Youth Development provides college and career exposure and preparation, financial aid and scholarship assistance, tutoring, test preparation, and connections to legal guidance, housing assistance, financial support and more, all free and personalized to each student’s specific needs. We currently serve nearly 4,000 students and alumni each year.

Congratulations 2020 Student Essay Contest Winners!

CYD asked students what they thought about COVID-19, the shutdown, job loss, the protests after George Floyd’s death, and remote learning. Here is what the top three essayists told us.

First-prize winner:
Dayanna Ceron Quito, Manhattan Comprehensive Night & Day High School

The Positive Side
Could you imagine being in quarantine for six months with your eight family members in one apartment? Well it happened to me. My name is Dayanna and I live with all my family, three younger siblings, my mom, my stepfather, and my grandparents. When New York shut down in March, me and my family were unemployed, which meant that there was an abundance of … Read more >>

Dayanna Ceron Quito

Second-prize winner:
Javaria Rehman, Manhattan Comprehensive Night & Day High School

Finding Peace in Chaos
My life changed drastically, and never would I have imagined that such isolated days were coming. On March 16, 2020, schools and colleges in NYC closed down, and at first I was glad that I didn’t have to go to school anymore. The stress from going to school suddenly disappeared and the heavy weight was quickly lifted off my shoulders. But those around me didn’t feel the same way … Read more >>

Javaria Rehman

Third-prize winner:
Sneha Roy, The High School for Health Professions and Human Services

The Voyage to Restore Hope
With the launch of COVID-19 in mid-March, everyone appeared to describe it as unprecedented and unforeseen. Though undisputable, it indeed is something beyond comprehension. My encounter with COVID had negatively introduced despondence. As uneasy as I was with my health and education, time compelled me to believe that there was no better time to … Read more >>

Sneha Roy

Youth at the Center of the Story:

Our Students Adjust to Remote Learning


“I check in daily with CYD to stay focused. They’ve helped me apply for unemployment and plan best ways to work as soon as it’s possible. Setting deadlines and managing my time has been challenging. But I’m motivated! I still plan to graduate next year and study computer engineering and climate science.”

Charles Michael

“I’m proud to be a first responder as an EMT during this crisis. When I graduated from CYD’s Career Academy last year, I never expected this. I got amazing training so I’m prepared. I won’t deny that it’s scary and that I come home exhausted, but I focus on making sure my patients get to the hospital safely, and their families know they are in good hands. Stay safe everyone.”


“Distance learning is different! In school, time is managed for you. At home it’s on you. But I’ve been managing and even helping my 11-year-old sister. I’ve been accepted at Syracuse University. The only reason I’m not stressed out right now is because of CYD. They helped me plan my applications and financial aid in advance.”


“My dad lost his job and I took a couple weeks off from food delivery because I was nervous. I’m back at my job because we need the money, but I wear a mask and am careful. I talk to my CYD advisor a lot. I’m studying my hardest so I still graduate in 2021. Then college for business or criminal justice.”

Our Partner Schools