Figure Skating in Harlem asks students to make a commitment to themselves and the program. Girls who participate sign a Skater's Contract and are responsible for maintaining at least a B+ average in school. The organization has two core components: our off-ice education and character development classes and on-ice skating instruction and performance.
Equipped with proper skates and team attire and supported by a staff of more than 50 educators and coaches, students attend FSH a minimum of 9–15 hours per week throughout the school year in our ICE: I Can Excel program.
Before lacing up their skates each program day, our students are engaged in an exciting array of off-ice educational classes based on our Leading Edge Academic Curriculum. These classes are designed to enhance students' core academic skills and study habits, promote positive social and emotional skills, teach communication and literacy skills, introduce lessons in money management, promote good health and proper nutrition, and teach skating history and theory.
Figure Skating in Harlem uses additional components such as a Teen Leadership Circle, mentoring, and counseling to develop skills and habits that our students will carry into adulthood. We also offer exciting field trips to local museums, theater, dance, music and cultural performances to broaden our students' perspective and interests. A highlight of the year is our Career Week where students visit diverse workplaces to gain knowledge of traditional and nontraditional fields. Students have viewed live surgery, met with two Supreme Court Justices and learned from female executives at Google.
Figure skating requires an incredible amount of concentrated physical and mental discipline, hard work and dedication. When our students take to the ice, most for the very first time, for their group instruction up to four afternoons a week, they are learning the best lessons skating has to offer and are benefiting from the experience and dedication of our professional skating staff.
Students work for extra opportunities like a spot on the synchronized skating team and summer scholarships to the Lake Placid Summer Figure Skating Program and Chelsea Piers Figure Skating camp. Every student performs in at least one of our special events during the year: the Annual Ice Show, the Soul on Ice Winter Skating Party and the Skating With the Stars gala.
Throughout the year, our girls see their progress toward achieving their ice skating goals concretely measured using the U.S. Figure Skating Basic Skills test. At the end of the program year, we celebrate their achievements on and off the ice as our much anticipated Awards Banquet.