San Francisco Achievers is a community-based non-profit organization providing college scholarships and mentoring services to African-American young men in San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD) high schools. The mission of San Francisco Achievers is to reduce the opportunity gap of African-American young men in San Francisco high schools through support, mentoring, and college scholarships.
San Francsico Achievers provides a holistic approach to serving the needs of Black male students in San Francisco high schools. Currently, we offer the following programs to support students and help them gain the skills needed to compete in today’s competitive academic and social environments.
High School Support Program
The High School Support Program offers four-year academic enrichment to students beginning in their freshman year. The program is designed to engage the students with members of the business, professional, academic, and local community to learn practical life-forming skills needed to succeed in a variety of settings. The program is also designed to create and establish a brotherhood environment in which the students are able to confine in the SFA Staff and their peers. This component of the program helps to support the students both socially and emotionally.
The College Program is currently open to eligible African-American male students within any San Francisco school, awards scholarships to those with a GPA of at least 2.5 and can demonstrate financial need on a yearly competitive basis. In addition to receiving a scholarship, each accepted applicant will be matched with a mentor to help be the support system they need throughout their college career.
In addition, SF Achievers provides the following resources:
- Field Trips Scheduled visits to local, cultural, and community events, including a 7 day over-night outdoor trip to Yosemite National Park.
- Mentoring Program Mentoring and tutoring help for program participants to assist with the goal of graduating high school and becoming empowered for the future.
- Beginning and End of Year Dinners Dinner and awards ceremony for students, families, tutors, and school faculty to kick-off the year and celebrate the end-of-year achievements.
- Individual Sessions Individualized meetings with students and their parents (or guardian) to help foster participation and academic program success.
- Summer School Program Specialized assistance for students who need extra help completing coursework and other requirements for graduation.
Dr. Henry Safrit, who created Meritus College Fund, founded San Francisco Achievers in 2008 to help in reducing the opportunity and social gaps of young Black men in San Francisco high schools. Studies show that Black men make up about 5.5% of all college students with only one in six graduating with a college degree. San Francisco Achievers helps to address some of these inequalities by providing the college scholarships and individual support.
African-American high school seniors too often face barriers to college access and success. Through a competive application process, San Francisco Achievers awards seniors with a 2.5 GPA or higher, upon high school graduation, a college scholarship worth up to $3000 per year for a student attending a four-year college and up to $1500 per year scholarship for scholars attending community colleges. The scholars’ progress is reviewed and their mentors are encouraged to reach out to students often to assist with providing support during those college years.
Since its inception in 2008, San Francisco Achievers has provided hundreds of college scholarships, with a significant amount of the funding provided by individual donors. The San Francisco Unified School District recognizes the San Francisco Achiever program as a significant partner in its efforts to close the opportunity gap, which, according to a former superintendent, is the single greatest social justice issue facing our nation today.
In July 2011, SF Achievers became a fully-formed 501(c)(3) organization – including an experienced Board of Directors made up of teachers, counselors, administrators and members of the business, medical, legal, and non-profit communities.
Amber Childress: firstname.lastname@example.org