Students Rising Above helps low-income, first-generation students successfully enter the workforce and break the cycle of poverty. SRA’s award-winning program identifies promising students, helps them afford college, provides emotional support and guidance, and provides job training, summer internships, and job mentoring.SRA helps students achieve the American dream.
Students are selected the summer before their senior year in high school, and SRA makes a 5+-year commitment, guiding students through college and into the workforce. 90% of SRA students graduate from college—three times the national average for low-income first generation students.
SRA recognized early on that a college degree is only the first step to economic advancement. Students need to obtain the skills and experience that employers seek. According to a recent study by McKinsey & Co. almost 40% of employers say lack of skills is the main reason for entry-level vacancies.
SRA’s College2Careers program ensures its students are job-market ready by providing real-life work experience through summer internship placements; opportunities for networking and job shadowing; and job readiness workshops in resume writing, interviewing, dressing professionally, and workplace etiquette.
All SRA students are low-income and typically the first in their families to go to college. Over 65% are African American, Latino, and Native American, communities traditionally underserved by higher education. Without SRA, most would not have had access to college. All would have had far lower job prospects.
Through the College2Careers program, SRA students acquire many of the same opportunities and connections that most children from upper class and educated families take for granted. SRA’s career development program, like its college completion support, is tailored to the individual. It works.