SOURCE: Sylvan Learning

Sylvan Learning

April 13, 2011 15:56 ET

Sylvan Learning Recruits Graduates to "Make a Difference" in Their Communities

Leading Supplemental Education Provider's New "Sylvan Stars" Website Allows Alumni to Share Stories of Personal and Professional Success With Current Students

BALTIMORE, MD--(Marketwire - Apr 13, 2011) - The nearly two million graduates of Sylvan Learning programs nationwide can now use their experience at Sylvan to help make a difference in their communities. Through a new Sylvan Stars alumni program, Sylvan aims to build a network that allows alumni to connect with each other and to share their personal success stories as a way of inspiring current Sylvan students to achieve their own personal best.

According to Dr. Rick Bavaria, Senior Vice President of Education Outreach for Sylvan, many former Sylvan students feel that the confidence and academic skills they gained at Sylvan represented a turning point in their lives. Sylvan is asking these "Sylvan Stars" to come forward and share their stories at in an effort to harness the power of these graduates in helping today's -- and tomorrow's -- students believe in their own ability to achieve personal and professional success.

"It's free, and it takes only a few minutes of time to share your story on our new Sylvan Stars website," says Dr. Bavaria. "If you're a graduate of a Sylvan center who has gone on to success as a cool mom or dad, a successful business person, a favorite teacher to your own students now, or someone making a difference in the world as a doctor, lawyer, clergy person, law enforcement member, farmer, or associate in a business, we'd love to hear from you. Your story could make a real difference in the life of a struggling student."

Retired NFL player Robert Tate is one of the first Sylvan stars to share his story on Tate credits the Sylvan Learning Center in Harrisburg, PA, that he attended during his high school years, with giving him the confidence and skills to succeed -- academically and in life.

"Sylvan helped me be a better man and taught me how to handle life-long experiences as far as dealing with my peers and people who tell you that you are nobody," says Tate. "I attended Sylvan Learning Center my sophomore year of high school and it made all the difference in the world for me academically. My grades improved significantly and for the first time, I felt good about myself in school."

Tate played for a total of nine years with the Minnesota Vikings, Baltimore Ravens and Arizona Cardinals before retiring in 2008. Today, Tate is a motivational speaker, author, and founder of a foundation that helps children with dyslexia.

"At Sylvan, we know that quality, effective tutoring can truly be life-changing for students and their families. During the past 32 years, we have worked with over two million students, enabling them to discover the joy of learning and to reach their goals," says Jeffrey Cohen, President and CEO, Sylvan Learning. "Sylvan Stars is an opportunity for all our former students to reconnect with the Sylvan community, and through their personal and professional success stories, inspire the thousands of Sylvan students currently enrolled in our centers throughout North America," he said.

Eighteen year old Cory Joyce from North Carolina is another Sylvan graduate, and a rising star in the world of stock car racing.

"While racing knowledge may have come naturally to me, that wasn't the case with math and reading as I made the transition to junior high school," says Joyce. "Sylvan took a hands-on approach I was used to seeing in my racing, and helped make learning fun again. Over time, both my grades and confidence went up."

To join the Sylvan Stars alumni program or read testimonials from Sylvan Stars, visit

Editor's Note: To speak with a Sylvan Star, or for more information on the program, please contact, Rabab Pettitt at or by calling 410-843-8928

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About Sylvan Learning
Sylvan Learning is the leading provider of tutoring to students of all ages, grades and skill levels. With 30 years of experience and more than 900 centers located throughout North America, Sylvan's proven process and personalized methods have inspired more than 2 million students to discover the joy of learning. Sylvan's trained and Sylvan-certified personal instructors provide individualized instruction in reading, writing, mathematics, study skills and test-prep for college entrance and state exams. Sylvan helps students develop the skills, habits and attitudes needed for lifelong success. Visit to share your personal academic experiences and comment on academic trends. For more information, call 1-800-31-SUCCESS or visit