2020-21: Challenges, Perseverance, Success!
It wasn’t easy, but it certainly was impactful. With a lot of perseverance, our students overcame remote learning challenges and made significant improvements in their job readiness skills, confidence, and more. We awarded $26,000 in scholarships and redesigned our program into a 7-year model. And we just launched our ‘21-22 program in which we return to in-person mentoring!
96% of our students are better prepared to persevere or overcome obstacles.
Our New 7-Year Model, Built for Success
In response to an increased need to help high school and college students overcome challenges, we have retooled our Workforce Prep program into a seven-year multi-channel model. This revised model engages students early in their high school experience and throughout their college years while providing flexibility with in-person and virtual programming.
87% of our students improved their job readiness skills.
Our 2020-21 Impact Was Impressive, Despite COVID
To say this past year was a challenge would be a gross understatement. Yet, despite all the difficulties our students and mentors faced, our impact was impressive, especially when considering our students did not have in-person schooling. 96 percent of our students improved their perseverance and ability to overcome challenges, 87 percent improved their job readiness skills, and 92 percent gained direction in their career interests.
96% of our students completed the first step towards their education or career goals.
Durell Thomas, Jr., Sports Photographer in the Making
When it comes to iconic sports photos, Detroiters often recall the pic of Kirk Gibson, roaring and leaping after he belted a heroic dinger in the ’84 World Series. Or maybe it’s the pic of Ben Wallace, leaving defenders six feet below as he got major air and attacked the rim in the ’04 NBA Finals. Durell Thomas, Jr., wants to be a professional sports photographer and take pics like these. With help from his mentor, Clarence Martin, Jr., president of Eypex Corporation, he has a vision, goals, and a plan to make it real.
77% of our students gained skills to improve their grades.
Talene Sarkissian, the Next Cyber Security Sleuth
Talene Sarkissian is a graduate of our Workforce Prep program at Warren Mott High School and current undergrad at Tiffin University where she is studying for a degree in cyber security with a minor in homeland security and terrorism. With help from her College Success Mentoring (CSM) coach, Beth Wagner, Talene overcame COVID-related challenges and is on track to graduate an entire semester early.
92% of our students gained direction in their career.
$26,000 in Scholarships Awarded
Our annual Awards Celebration was live and in-person this year! While we still practiced COVID safety protocols, the energy and excitement was undeniable. Some students met their mentors face-to-face (not on a Zoom call) for the first time! In recognition of their hard work and accomplishments, 19 students were awarded a combined total of $26,000 in scholarships.
91% of our students have an improved positive view of their future.
Empowering, Zoom Conquering – These are our Mentors
Our mentors come from every nook and cranny in the Metro Detroit business world. From small mom and pop shops to large international corporations, you’ll find in our ranks everything from entrepreneurs to presidents. One thing they all have in common is this – they’re making a real and meaningful difference, not just for the students they’re empowering, but for their families, their communities, and for the companies at which they will eventually work. And this past year, when most of the world was dealing with Zoom burn out, they showed up, every week, without fail.
90% of our students developed skills required to succeed at a career.
Thank You to our 100+ Partners and Board of Directors
We have an outstanding team of partners and board members who believe in our mission and support our students! With their help, we empowered hundreds of local students this past year, helping them get excited about their future and prepare for life after school. Learn more about our partners or Board of Directors and ways you can get involved!
89% of our students increased their self-confidence.
It’s Important. It’s Needed. Get Involved!
Volunteers are critical to our student’s success. With help from local business professionals, we engage students in a multi-year experiential curriculum that includes mentoring, life skills development, goal setting, job readiness training, career exploration, and college success coaching. Students leave the program informed, motivated, and better equipped to overcome challenges. Check out these opportunities to get involved.