BUFFALO, N.Y. — Before the school year ended, there was something positive happening between Buffalo Police officers and students at Math Science Technology Prep, formerly known as Seneca Vocational in Buffalo.
On the court, a science tech prep squad having fun as part of health and wellness day.
Buffalo Police school resource officer Moe Badger told 2 On Your Side: "We see the hard work that they put in, and it is not easy. After the pandemic we saw the things they had to go through just to get back to normalcy, so we celebrate them, and we're honored that they allow us to protect and serve."
Badger was on the court, playing basketball and off the court handing out gifts to top achievers.
It was a day of celebration, but it was also a way to break down stereotypes that is often seen between young people in inner cities and police.
MST senior Jaquan Rosenthal told 2 On Your Side: "We can trust cops more with, you know, everything happening in the world, so with them coming to our school they're gaining more trust both inside and outside. It's just helping us to academically pass and to focus, you know, keep things in motion."
Rosenthal said he credited Officer Badger with helping him through high school.
Lieutenant Todd McAlister wants to see long-term relationships and connections established.
"I think it's important for our youth to see us in a different light. Everything we're doing right now is to foster relationships for the future," he said.