About Us

Program Background

Since 1993, Hopkins School has provided an academic enrichment program to students from New Haven public and parochial schools. Formerly known as Summerbridge New Haven (1993-2005), and Breakthrough New Haven (2006-2016), Pathfinder Hopkins School provides an academically rigorous after-school and summer program to academically motivated middle school students in grades 5-8.  

Program Overview

Pathfinder Hopkins School is a tuition-free, four-year, after-school and full-time summer program serving students from the summer before 6th grade until the summer before 9th grade. Pathfinder students attend New Haven public and parochial schools and want enrichment above and beyond what their schools already offer. 

Pathfinder provides a tuition-free, four-year program of comprehensive, rigorous academic preparation and high school options counseling to high potential middle school students from New Haven public and parochial schools.

Pathfinder is also a workshop in teacher education for high school and college students who serve as teaching fellows assisting professional teaching faculty, teaching non-core academic classes, and serving as mentors to students.

Pathfinder prepares students with the academic confidence, knowledges, and skills required for academic success at the highest caliber college preparatory high schools and high school programs. 

At the Pathfinder Program...

  • it is cool to be smart!
  • teachers are passionate about their subjects and excited to work with the students! 
  • four square is a big deal! 
  • science is hands-on and Shakespeare comes alive!

Summer Program

  • 5 weeks in July & August
  • Schedule: Monday - Friday, 8:00am–4:00pm
  • Hours of homework per night: 2-2.5
  • 5th–6th grade Subjects studied: Humanities, Math, Latin, Reading/ELA, computer programming, plus enrichment classes
  • 7th–8th grade Subjects Studied: English, Math, History, Science, SSAT prep & enrichment classes
  • Summer Fun Stuff: field trips, extracurricular activities, surprises, celebrations

After-School Program

  • January - May
  • 6th – 8th grade: Thursdays, 4:15pm–5:50 pm
  • Hours of homework per week: 1-5
  • 5th–6th grade Subjects studied: Humanities, Math, Latin, Reading/ELA, computer programming, plus enrichment classes
  • Subjects studied: math, creative writing, chemistry, robots, computer programming, SSAT prep

Who are Pathfinder Students?

The program serves students who currently attend and have demonstrated success in New Haven public and parochial schools.

Students who enjoy Pathfinder are

  • motivated to do well in school and proud of their grades;
  • kind and considerate to their classmates and teachers;
  • curious about lots of different things; and
  • very interested in going to college.

Additionally, most of our students are

  • would-be first-generation college students;
  • from underrepresented minority groups;
  • come from families that speak languages other than English at home;
  • immigrants or first-generation Americans; or
  • students whose families qualify for free or reduced lunch at school.

Teaching Fellows

Pathfinder offers a limited number of paid Teaching Fellowships each year. Teaching Fellows are expected to work full time for six weeks in support of our Summer Program. 
These positions are intended for college students who are considering entering the field of education. Hopkins School students entering their Senior year with a proven track record as a volunteer in the School Year program may also be considered. 
Pathfinder Alumni and New Haven Promise Recipients are encouraged to apply.

Meet Our Team

List of 5 members.

  • Photo of Errol Saunders II

    Errol Saunders II 

    Executive Director of Pathfinder / Pathfinder Admissions Coordinator / History
    Read Bio
  • Photo of Dante Brito, Jr.

    Dante Brito, Jr. 

    Pathfinder Dean of Students / Athletic Department Associate / English
    203-397-1001 x647
    Read Bio
  • Photo of Jennifer Geel

    Jennifer Geel 

    Pathfinder Director of Operations / Science
    203.397.1001 x790
    Read Bio
  • Photo of Joshua Young

    Joshua Young 

    Science / Pathfinder Co-Director of Summer Program
    203.397.1001 x606
  • Photo of Keely Garden

    Keely Garden 

    Pathfinder Co-Director of Summer Program


General FAQs

List of 8 items.

  • Who is eligible to apply for the Pathfinder Program?

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  • When should I apply to the Pathfinder Program?

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  • What kind of commitment is the Pathfinder Program?

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  • Does the Pathfinder Program make it easier for my child to get into Hopkins School?

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  • Can my child participate in only one part of the program: after school only or summer only?

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  • When should we take our family’s summer vacation?

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  • How will the program communicate with me?

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  • What is expected of my child if they are accepted and attend the program?

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After School Program

List of 3 items.

  • When does the After School Program begin?

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  • Does the After School Program Provide transportation?

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  • What are my child’s responsibilities during the After School Program?

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List of 5 items.

  • When is my child eligible to apply to Pathfinder?

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  • What is the admissions process?

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  • How does my child apply to the Pathfinder program?

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  • When will I be notified about the admissions decision?

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  • My child was placed on the waitlist. Now what?

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Summer Program

List of 6 items.

  • Is Pathfinder a summer camp?

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  • Does the program provide transportation during the summer?

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  • Does Pathfinder provide meals for my child?

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  • What school supplies does my child need to buy for the summer program?

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  • Will my child be assigned homework?

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  • Is there any outside time during the Pathfinder day?

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    • Voted #1
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Hopkins is a private middle school and high school for grades 7-12. Located on a campus overlooking New Haven, CT, the School takes pride in its intellectually curious students as well as its dedicated faculty and staff.