Harlem Junior Tennis and Education

40 West 143rd Street
New York City, NY
  • 212-491-3738
Site: hjtep.org
  • 145th Street (900 ft) IRT Lenox Av
  • 135th Street (2000 ft) IRT Lenox Av
  • Harlem – 148th Street (2200 ft) IRT Lenox Av

Two Harlem residents and tennis enthusiasts, Claude Cargill and Bill Brown, started HJTEP in1972 at the local 369th Regiment Armory.

One of the first African-American policemen in New York, Cargill retired as a youth patrolman in 1962. He had organized and coached Police Athletic League basketball programs and had privately supported youngsters by buying tennis equipment, paying tournament entry fees, providing room and board and securing private coaches for talented players.

While the two founders gave tennis lessons and subsidized the fledgling program, former Knicks player Earl ("the Pearl") Monroe helped them attract outside funds. He and Bill Holloway, another tennis instructor, teamed with Mutual of New York (MONY) Financial Services to sponsor an annual invitational tournament to benefit the program.

In 1979, they launched a Homework Club to provide tutoring and academic counseling. Their early emphasis on education has only grown in recent years. The founders would be gratified to know that 60% of our program graduates go on to college.

Executive Director — Katrina Adams.

Harlem Junior Tennis and Education, фото 1
Infrastructure
Tennis courts
  • 212-491-3738
Training facility for
  • boys
  • girls
  • young men
  • young women
  • men
  • women
Sport classes
Tennis
  • 212-491-3738

Our programming is broken into three distinct levels Grassroots & Futures, Tournament Leveland The Tournament Team. 

Programs:

  • Grassroots I (ages: 7-10 yrs old) — It is our beginners' class. These students use the larger, softer and slower tennis balls referred as the Red Ball - enabling them to see them clearly and diminishing fears of treacherous faster, higher bouncing balls. The emphasis here is on understanding the game and acquiring basic skills. We focus on preventing frustration by keeping it as simple and enjoyable as possible. Grassroots I meets twice weekly for a total of 3 hours total;
  • Grassroots II (ages: 7-10 yrs old) — It is our advanced beginners' group. This group begins to transition from the larger, softer and slower Red Ball tennis balls to the Orange Ball and begins to focus on developing the hand-to-eye coordination skills needed for the next stage. They also start to play recreational games, competing with each other. Grassroots II meets twice a week for 3 hours total;
  • Futures (ages: 7-10 yrs old) — Formally known as "Munchkins". Group accepts 12 to 15 students who have the skill sets to play on a more regular basis. Focusing on specific areas of their game, these players transition from purely recreational to competitive recreational play taking part in tournaments with kids from other areas. Futures meet 3 times weekly for a total of 4 hours;
  • Tournament Level (ages: 11-14 yrs old) — Tournament Development Stage (TDS) I group, usually 20-24 students, isn't age limited, but typically works with kids ages 11-14 who are still playing recreational tennis but trying to get into competitive play. The workload is more intense and expectations are higher. Physically, they are stronger than Munchkins but need more knowledge and skills for infrequent tournament play. TDS I meets Wednesday, Friday and Saturday;
  • Tournament Development Stage (TDS) II (ages: 15-17 yrs old)  — This group is similar to TDS, except players are older and their play is more competitive. TDS II groups usually number 20-24 players. Focusing on high school tennis, they play against students from different schools. Schedules are set by the public school system and our players learn to manage their time effectively. Classes meet Wednesday, Friday and Sunday;
  • Tournament Academy Stage (TAS) I (ages: 11 - 13 yrs old) — Admits a dozen students to play competitive tennis only. They have developed beyond recreational play and are trying to achieve a USTA ranking to allow them to further their game, with an end goal of winning college tennis scholarship. In addition to training, TAS I players play a maximum of 2 tournaments per month;
  • Tournament Academy Stage (TAS) II (ages: 14 - 18 yrs old) — This group shares the same goals as TAS I but compete on an even higher level. Their goal is to win a scholarship at a NCAA Division I university. Division I schools include Ivy League Colleges, leading West Coat schools, traditionally Black colleges like Howard and Hampton University and nearby Fairleigh Dickinson and Fairfield University. TAS II students play a maximum of tournaments per month to earn a ranking and have program play 5 days a week;
  • Tournament Team — The Tournament Team represents our top-level players aiming for higher academic and tennis achievement. This select group of high potential players, across all ages, demonstrate an ability and desire to pursue higher academic and tennis achievement. Members of the team receive financial assistance for private coaching, HTJEP programming, tournament costs and more. Players train 4 days a week and compete in 24 tournaments per year;
  • Outdoor Season (Summer Programs) — HJTEP offers Summer programming for beginning players and high performance tournament level players. The Beginners Day Camp is offered at Howard Bennett Park and the Tournament Training Camp location is TBD.

Esu Ma'at — Tennis Consultant. Mr. Ma'at is a graduate of our program. Now a USPTA and USTA High Performance-certified teaching professional, he joined our staff in 2002 to ensure effective training of coaches and to develop intermediate and tournament level players. Since 2002, his coaching philosophy has produced over 100 section-ranked, 20 nationally ranked and 24 varsity student athletes on college tennis teams. Mr. Ma'at attended Farleigh Dickinson University on scholarship, where he played #2 Singles for 4 years; the last 2 years he was an All-American. He holds a Masters in Sports Management from Columbia University.

Simone Spigner — Assistant Manager of Tennis Programming. Ms. Spigner, a graduate of HJTEP, is a head coach of entry-level programs for our youngest players. She is a PTR-certified teaching professional with more than 10 years of experience in coaching. She attended South Carolina State University on a 4-year tennis scholarship. Simone was promoted to Assistant Manager of Tennis Programming in 2017.

Coaches:

  • Ben Johnson;
  • Sam Fumi;
  • Patricia Zapata;
  • Joel De Los Santos;
  • John Fumi;
  • Brandon P.
Sport class for
  • boys
  • girls
  • young men
  • young women
  • men
  • women
Harlem Junior Tennis and Education