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About Our Areas of Work
We organize our work into three areas to help low-income youth & adults:


Thursday January 17, 2013
How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity, and the Hidden Power of Character
Paul Tough’s new book, How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity, and the Hidden Power of Character, is about the importance of character in preparing students for success in education, employment, and life. Specifically, he describes the critical role of developing executive functions for young people to succeed in college. Executive functions, according to Mr. Tough, combine both emotional and cognitive impulse control that help students regulate their thought and emotions. He quotes a Harvard psychologist who describes executive functions as “a team of air traffic controllers overseeing the...
Tags: Dropout Recovery
Monday January 7, 2013
The Chronicle of Higher Education recently interviewed Byron Villagran a former high school dropout who then enrolled in and graduated from a school run by the Los Angeles Conservation Corps. At LACC, Byron’s educational aspirations were reignited and today he has not only earned a diploma, but is well on his way to complete community college and transfer to a four-year college. There are millions of Byrons across our country who, for a variety of reasons, are not doing well in traditional school settings or have entirely dropped out of school. Byron was fortunate enough to find the LACC...
Tags: Career Pathways, Dropout Recovery, Opportunity Youth
Wednesday November 14, 2012
Youth Weigh In On Solutions to Their Own Economic Challenges
In the contentious debate about how to fix America’s problems or even which problems to fix, the National Council of Young Leaders has offered a youth perspective. The Council is a diverse group of young people from all corners of the country who recently released their Recommendations to increase Opportunity and Decrease Poverty in America. This group came together on the recommendation of the White House Council on Community Solutions, and was assembled by six sponsoring organizations including JFF, YouthBuild USA, Opportunity Nation, Public Allies, Year Up, and Youth Leadership Institute...
Tags: Opportunity Youth
Wednesday November 7, 2012
A newly released FSG publication, Collective Impact for Opportunity Youth proposes how communities across the country can improve the life trajectories of the nearly 20 percent of our 16- to 24-year-olds, who are not connected to either education or the workforce. The White House Council on Community Solutions dubs this group of 6.7 million young adults “opportunity youth” both to highlight their aspirations to realize their full potential and to remind us that collectively these young adults represent an enormous opportunity to improve the economic and social health of our nation. The...
Tags: Opportunity Youth, Dropout Recovery
Wednesday May 2, 2012
Education is hailed as the greatest equalizer in American society. The fact is for entire generations of Americans, access to good and meaningful educational opportunities has historically been a ticket to well-paying jobs, greater participation in civic life, strong families and communities, and for all of us a stronger and more prosperous United States of America. Yet for a large portion of African-Americans (males in particular), the promise of education as a way out of poverty into a productive life of work and active civic participation remains largely unfulfilled. The statistics are...
Tags: Dropout Recovery, State-Local K-12 Policy