At the Y, teens can work on leadership skills, prep for college, play a sport, and give back through programs designed for them. We’re committed to empowering youth around New York City, and many of our teen programs are free for qualified participants.

In addition to our programming, the Teen Center at the West Side Y also provides young people with a safe space to socialize, seek support, and participate in activities.

Teen Center membership is free with active program participation. Programs run October-May. For more information on how to sign up and any program questions, contact our Teen Center team.

Education, Leadership, and College Prep

Rowe Scholars

High school students have the opportunity to participate in a workshop series on college prep and career readiness. Advisers provide guidance in navigating the intricacies of applying for college and preparing to join the workforce.

Sophomores: Wednesdays 4:30-6 PM
Juniors: Thursdays 4:30-6 PM
Seniors: time determined by student

Leaders Club

This program provides club members with opportunities for leadership training, personal growth, community service, and social development. Young people meet on a weekly basis in a small group of peers and advisors to map out career and educational goals, seek information, and share experiences related to self-improvement.

9-12th Grade
Mondays 4:30-6 PM

Junior Leaders Club

Middle schoolers meet on a weekly basis in a small group of peers and advisors to map out career and educational goals, seek information, and share experiences related to self-improvement. Jr. Leaders Club offers exciting opportunities for leadership training, personal growth, community service, and social development, and to engage with other Y teen groups in the northeast.

6-8th Grade
Wednesdays 4:30-6 PM


Our program introduces young people to technical fields, spurs their interest, and shows them that they can transcend socioeconomic barriers to have rewarding futures.

Teens Take the City

By working alongside local political leaders, teens have the chance to see how political decisions are made, and learn how to become effective agents of change. Writing legal memoranda, resolutions, and press releases gives teens hands on experience, and exposure to how the democratic process impacts NYC communities.

6-12th Grade
Fridays 4:30-6 PM

Y Global Teens

YMCA Global Teens is a leadership development and service learning program that engages teens in a year-long empowering international experience culminating with a summer service abroad experience.

Career Readiness


9th-12th Grade
Tuesdays 4:30-6 PM

A career development program that provides 10th-12th graders an opportunity to gain job readiness skills through a 12-week workshop series. After the workshop series, teens are placed at an internship for 3 months. Participants in this programs receive a stipend for their completion of the program.

Teen Career Connection

TCC is an eight-week comprehensive internship program, providing NYC youth an unparalleled opportunity. Teens first go through two weeks of intensive professional development, followed by six weeks of hands-on learning experience at an organization/business matched to the student's career aspirations. In addition to the training and internship experience, teens get linked to a professional who serves as their mentor, supporting them throughout their time in the program.

Applications for open in January. For more information on how to apply and any program questions, contact our Teen Center department.

Swim & Sports

Coaching Hours

Questions about fitness, healthy habits or how to use a machine? Stop by coaching hours for guidance from our coaches.

Ages 11-19
Wednesdays 4-7 PM

Swim Lessons

Teens can learn to swim, improve their skills, or join a youth swim team. Swimming programs are not part of the Teen Center. 

Find a Swim Lesson

Lifeguard Training and Certification

Become a certified lifeguard and help save lives.

Become a Lifeguard

Youth Sports

Teens can learn to play a sport, develop make new friends, and become empowered in youth sports programs such as basketball, soccer and martial arts. Sports programs are not part of the Teen Center. 

Find a Sports Class



Teen Tech Crew

In Teen Tech Crew, technical theater professionals teach weekly workshops in lighting, stage management, sound, costume, and scenic design. Students support Kids Company productions with their new learnings, and work backstage during Teen Theater Collective's dramatic play presentations. Teen Tech Crew is integrated fully into our Kids Company and our Teen Theater Collective productions, playing essential roles backstage, in the booth, and assisting with the building of scenery, props, and costumes. 

Over the course of the year, students also create independent study projects in their areas of interest (lighting, sound, costume, stage management, scenic design) under supervision by a designated mentor, and share out their work in a special Teen Tech Presentation. Teen Tech is free with support from the Annual Campaign. Students who register for the program must make a commitment of attendance, punctuality, participation, and effort.

Ages 12-19 years
Fridays 4:30-6:30 PM

Tech/Performances: November 10-18, December 13-15, 2018

Teen Theater Collective

In Teen Theater Collective, students rehearse and perform a classical theater production in the Marjorie S. Deane Little Theater, a unique opportunity for teens to develop their identity, grow as actors and artists, and build a community with their peers. Classes include the development of acting, improvisation, writing, directing, and performance skills, the development of original material through a series of dramatic explorations, improvisation structures, writing exercises, and more. The resulting performance presented is a product of the collective of teens, their strengths, personalities, passions, and pursuits. 

Ages 10-18 years
Tuesdays 4:30-7 PM

Performances: December 15, 2018



Day Camps

YMCA teen camps in all five boroughs are designed to immerse campers in fun activities that keep them active, learning, and engaged during the summer months. Teen campers participate in hands-on programming geared towards building self-confidence as well as activities designed to engage teens in developing educational and career goals. Campers go on field trips, and participate in swimming, dancing, singing, sports and more!

Find a Day Camp

Sleepaway, Adventure, and Sports Camps

Teens can participate in traditional sleepaway camps, adventure camps, and sports camps at YMCA Camp in Huguenot, New York, located 86 miles northwest of NYC between the Delaware Water Gap and the Catskill Mountains.

Camp Info

Contact Us

Questions about classes at the Y? Our membership team is here to help you.