In 2017, Rocking the Boat received a generous donation from the D’Agata Family Foundation. Rocking the Boat engages over 200 teens per year in a series of STEM-based programs that
last throughout their high school careers and into college. All participants receive social services provided by licensed social workers. The organization offers students comprehensive support and helps them graduate from high school, apply to college or trade school, overcome obstacles to attaining a college degree or professional certification, and map out a path for reaching their long-term goals. Participants may arrive at Rocking the Boat not knowing how to read a ruler and having never used tools, but they work together to build full size traditional wooden rowing and sailing boats from scratch. Boat-building students and apprentices study the plans and create and assemble all of the components from stem to stern, fasten the planks and frames, paint, and then launch their boat into the Bronx River. The program has impressive statistics. One hundred percent of alumni have completed high school or the equivalent. Furthermore, tracking alumni six years later finds that 80 percent of them are either currently attending or have graduated from college.