Urban Alliance, a group made up of representatives from Washington-area businesses, has an annual program where they prepare 150 D.C. public high school students for the professional world.
Each business pays $9,500 a year per student. Some of the money goes toward training workshops on issues in the business world; some goes to the student as pay for hours they have worked. Students typically work at the companies 15 hours a week during the school year and 40 hours a week during the summer.
More than 1,000 students have been involved in the program since it started 12 years ago. It has a 99 percent on-time high school graduation rate and the vast majority of students that participate go on to college.
The Urban Alliance was founded by Jeffrey and Mary Zients and Andrew Plepler, president of the Bank of America Foundation. For every program dollar the students save, up to $1,000, the Urban Alliance puts aside $3 to help defray college expenses.
The 5 Promises represent conditions children need to achieve adult success. The collective work of the Alliance involves keeping these promises to America’s youth. This article relates to the promises highlighted below:
These six platform areas are based on the collective experience and expertise of individuals at organizations engaged with young people across the country, the experience of young people themselves, and our own research. The platform areas are a statement of best practice – they are what has been demonstrated to work to improve graduation outcomes for young people.: