YMCA of the Triangle

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Lightner Y Achievers

Excelling through Access, Exposure and Opportunity

Lightner Y Achievers is truly an experience everyone should soak up. It's a program that helps teens understand and learn who they are at critical times in their lives. 

The best part of the program? It's a safe haven, a blessing and at the end, teens feel good about who they and everything they can accomplish in life.


Register For Y Achievers

The Clarence E. Lightner YMCA Achievers program introduces teens in grades 6 - 12 to adults of color who guide them through experiences that prepare them for life after high school. Through civic engagement, community service projects, and academic enhancement programs, students make new friends, learn healthy lifestyle choices and prepare for their future.

Teens attend meetings where they are divided into small age-appropriate groups called clusters and are exposed to a variety of education and career options. Lightner Y Achievers also take part in volunteer opportunities and group outings. During our spring break college tour, high school students visit area universities and learn more about higher education options. 

2022 - 2023 Program Kickoff

Our 2022-23 Program Kickoff event is scheduled for August 27 at the YMCA of the Triangle Association Resource Center. You and your teen are invited to come and learn more about the program! Come prepared to learn about:

• College Tours
• Program Summits
• Robotics Teams
• Girls & Boys Empowerment
• Youth & Government Program

Middle School teens and their parents should attend from 9 - 10 a.m.
High School teens and their parents should attend from 10:30 - 11:30 a.m.

This is a free event! For more information, contact Jasmine Gilchrist.


  • Provide role models whose success and knowledge will inspire youth to set and reach their goals
  • Help youth develop individual talents, a positive sense of self and leadership ability
  • Motivate participants to raise academic performance, succeed in school and gain marketable skills.


  • Clarence E. Lightner YMCA Achievers Banquet
  • NCYAG Conference
  • Annual College Tour
  • End-of-Year Celebration


Y Achievers can participate in a STEM FIRST robotics program for grades 6 - 12. The program encourages kids to learn robotics through kits and Legos. Grade-based teams form to design, build and test their robots during the year. Competitions are held and participants may have the opportunity to travel to other competitions. 

Annual College Tour

Annually, during traditional Spring Break times, Y Achievers hosts college tours to schools across the Southeast. This gives students the opportunity to meet staff, learn more about schools and gather information for making post-graduation decisions.

Community Engagement Night

Join us on Saturday, August 27 from 7 - 10:30 p.m. at the Southeast Raleigh YMCA for an evening of fun and fellowship, including food trucks ,music and a showing of the Dreamworks movie “The Bad Guys.” Be sure to RSVP using the QR code below and bring a chair or blanket to sit on. It's a free event.! Sign up today!

Family Camp Weekend

We are hosting a Family Camp Weekend at YMCA Camp Seafarer on Oct. 7 - 9 for all Y Achiever families. Camp Seafarer is an overnight camp in Arapahoe, N.C., on the coast of the Neuse River. Activities include ziplining, canoeing, paddleboarding and more. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are provided and families stay in open-air cabins. 


YMCA Camp Seafarer


Friday, October 7 - Sunday, October 9


$102 per person
Cabins: $50 per family
Air-Conditioned Cabins: $100 per family (limited availability)
Payment plans are available at signup.

Register for Family Camp Weekend


Want to keep up with everything we're doing and learn about volunteer opportunities? Visit the link below to stay in contact with us!

Connect with Lightner Y Achievers


Adult Achievers are key to the program's success and growth. These volunteers serve 12 hours per month as committee members, cluster leaders and/ or role models.  Find volunteer opportunities.


The Lightner Y Achievers program is funded through the YMCA's Annual We Build Campaign. Please consider a donation.


For more information about Lightner Y Achieves, contact Jasmine Gilchrist, Program Director or call 919-719-9622.