Mission: Students Rising Above helps exceptional low-income Bay Area high school students who are overcoming tremendous odds of poverty, homelessness, and neglect, to fulfill their dream of a college education. We provide the mentoring, financial assistance, and employment skills to be successful in school and in life.
Target demographics: low-income, first generation college students
Geographic areas served: the San Francisco Bay Area
Programs: college application assistance, pre-college readiness support, tuition assistance, career development workshops, paid summer internships, mentors and healthcare.
I've been involved with SRA for 1/2 dozen years, and for most of that time as a member of the Board of Directors. As a Board Member, I have been most impressed with the results of the organization. Many nonprofits are working valiently to improve access to college for underepresented youth, but this is one of the few organizations that actually get these students through college (with an amazing 90% graduation rate) and into the workforce. This requires so much more than financial support, as the SRA staff and volunteers become a new family for these students -- 65% of whom are foster care youth or even homeless. Plus, SRA has strong financial stewardship, an active Board, and stellar management by the executive team.