BRIEF HISTORY OF NATIONAL ACT-SO PROGRAM
1976: Vernon Jarrett presented his concept for ACT-SO an “Olympics of the Mind” to the DuSable Museum of African American History.
1977: The NAACP Board of Directors adopted a resolution to accept ACT- SO as an official sponsored NAACP youth achievement program that would be sponsored by local NAACP units, conduct an annual local competition and bring a contingency of gold medalists to the annual National ACT-SO Competition.
1978: The first National ACT-SO competition was held in Portland, Oregon with seven cities participating: Atlanta, Baltimore, Chicago, Kansas City, Los Angeles, New Orleans and St. Louis.
2004: Mr. Vernon Jarrett, ACT-SO founder, lost his battle with cancer at the age of 82.
Present: ACT-SO sustains approximately 200 programs nationally. Over the past 42 (forty two) years, over 250,000 students have participated in the program.
NAACP ACT-SO continues to promote growth, excellence and innovation to position ACT-SO competitors as “Leaders For Tomorrow and Beyond.”
NYC ACT-SO is a not-for-profit organization, having an IRS 501(c)(3) tax exempt designation
The mission of NAACP New York City Academic, Cultural, Technological, & Scientific Olympics (NAACP NYC ACT-SO) is to overcome the vicious cycle of low scholastic expectations and achievement that plagues Black underserved minority youth throughout New York City; to strengthen Black high school students’ academic skills and inspire the confidence they will need to succeed as adults; and, to offer individualized academic mentorship and diverse enrichment activities, of which there is short supply in the New York City public high schools.