Vassar Education Collaboration

Vassar English Language Learners Outreach Program (VELLOP)

The Vassar English Language Learners Outreach Program (VELLOP) provides tutoring services to ELL students throughout the Poughkeepsie City School District. Our focus is on literacy improvement, the importance of bilingualism, and dropout prevention.

The ELL population in the Poughkeepsie school district is made up primarily of Spanish speaking students, with a few from other countries as well. VELLOP offers tutoring for these students at the Early Learning Center and Poughkeepsie High School. VELLOP offers programs to support young ELL students at a time when they are vulnerable to increases in the achievement gap. We believe that tutoring with VELLOP connects Vassar students directly with the community they inhabit and the social issues they study in theoretical settings. Finally, as an outreach program, our hope is to connect low-income immigrant families to Vassar resources.

Early Learning Center

  • VELLOP focuses on acquiring the fundamental literacy and arithmetic skills that will carry students through the rest of their educational careers.
  • Tutors from Vassar are paired directly with young ELLs and follow their students’ progress through the semester.

Poughkeepsie High School

  • Our mentors work one-on-one and in small groups with ELLs in their content classes throughout the school day to help them complete their coursework.
  • We teach learning strategies that will make the students better learners in all classes, as well as improve their reading skills and develop academic and career plans.
  • At least once per semester, VELLOP high school students can attend a field trip to Vassar College for enrichment activities such as touring the Vassar art museum or watching a student drama performance.

Together, VELLOP serves over 150 students in 15 different classrooms, with over 30 Vassar mentors per semester.

To become a part of this initiative or for answers to any questions you have, please contact John Bradley.

More information on the program can be found at

Vassar​ ​College​ ​is​ ​grateful​ ​to​ ​United​ ​Way​ ​of​ ​the​ Dutchess-Orange County region​ and The Mindich Fund for the support of VEC​.