Insights from thought leaders working to improve the lives of America’s Youth

Gabrielle Mathis

Communications Associate, America's Promise Alliance
When I tell people I’m graduating in May, the first question they ask is “What do you want to do?” or “What’s next?”   I don’t know the answer, and I’ve come to terms that it’s OK not to know. For the second time in 22 years, I get to decide what to do with my life. It’s not something I should be afraid of or nervous about. I should be excited because I know I can get through it because I’ve done it before.
President & CEO, America's Promise Alliance
President & CEO America's Promise Alliance
Every day, my colleagues and I share and read studies, news reports and op-eds written by experts in the field, and I love reading them. And yet, I often find myself learning the most from pieces written by young people themselves—the real experts not just on education, but on all the issues that concern them and have an impact on their lives.
LaShawn Massenberg

LaShawn Massenberg

Student Choice Award Winner Project Soapbox and Mikva Challenge DC
“What set you from?” “What hood you wit?” “What you doing around here?”
Tanya Tucker, Vice President of Alliance Engagement
Vice President of Alliance Engagement
The campaign’s focus is on narrowing graduation gaps for all subgroups. This summer, we’re starting by focusing on two groups of students with a long way to go to reach 90 -- English-language learners and homeless students. And we need your help.
Anna Populourum

Anna Populorum

senior at Vernon Malone College Career Academy
“As a student, I’m told where I need to go, but not how to get there. What kids like me really need is guidance. We need a community that is supportive and open to students. We need a community that understands that most kids are very eager to learn and are desperately waiting for inspiration to ignite within themselves.”
President & CEO, America's Promise Alliance
President & CEO America's Promise Alliance
Adults are used to being experts. Too often, they’re certain they know what young people need. Though often well-meaning, these adults don’t stop to ask young people if a new building or block scheduling or new technology or exit exams will help motivate them to achieve.
Tonya J.  Williams

Tonya J. Williams

Manager, Media and External Relations
On Tuesday, April 26 America’s Promise staff members Eboni-Rose Thompson, Erica Turner and I  attended the College Signing Day event, featuring  First Lady Michelle Obama as part of the Reach Higher initiative.
Keren Agurcia

Keren Agurcia

Senior Aquinas High School in the Bronx
I never imagined that I’d be in the same room as First Lady Michelle Obama—but that’s exactly what happened at College Signing Day last month. I’ll be attending New York University in the fall, and t
Janiel Richards
Digital Commerce Design Developer IBM
I was born in Trinidad and began my life in America at the age of two. Like many families, my parents came to New York seeking the American Dream and a better future for me and my sisters.
Odunola Ojewumi
Trustee America’s Promise Alliance
Often times, it’s older adults speaking about what’s best for young people. But America’s Promise passes the torch to youth for us to decide what’s best for our future.
President & CEO, America's Promise Alliance
President & CEO America's Promise Alliance
In 2015, the Citi Foundation and America’s Promise selected 12 organizations as inaugural grant recipients of the Youth Opportunity Fund.
Rachael Tutwiler Fortune
Director of Alliance Engagement
A few weeks ago, 175 young people in grades 5 through 12 attended Youth Day at the Capitol in St. Paul, asking well-researched questions and offering clear opinions on the availability of before- and after-school programs for students from low-income families, voter turnout, access to quality data, and high school graduation requirements.