Scholars Program

Scholars Program
Institution
New Futures
State
District of Columbia
Academic Level
Community-Based Organization
Issue Area
Retention
Key Personnel
Program Focus
Career/Workforce,
Scholarship

Overview

New Futures’ mission is to create educational opportunities for rewarding careers. They are the only regional organization supporting systematically excluded young people as they leverage the opportunities of shorter-term postsecondary credentials to pursue lasting careers and financial stability. Latino(a) students represent over 50% of the Scholars. It is critical for the organization to serve the Latino community as they are one of the growing communities in the Washington DC region and are still critically underrepresented in higher education and in degree completion compared to their white counterparts. As a social justice organization, they strongly believe in serving communities of color, specifically black and brown students as they are among the most disenfranchised populations in our country. The program's goal is to close gaps in resources, privilege, and education that perpetuate generational inequity.

Program Description

New Futures originated as a scholarship organization and for the first 10 years, they solely provided scholarships to students. After 2011, they began incrementally incorporating programming, starting with a couple of skill-building workshops and community experiences. By 2018, they formalized and grew their Scholars program. Programming includes financial support in the form of a scholarship, 1:1 advising and coaching, providing academic and career skill-building workshops, and launching an alumni community engagement and support program. To intentionally serve Latino(a) students, they partner closely with other Latino-serving organizations and schools to refer scholars and create a robust pipeline of Latino students.

Outcome

In the last five years, as they formalized their program, New Futures has been more proactive in developing a more robust data system and practices.

  • The program defines success rates as persistence + degree attainment/all students. In the most recent years it has had the following rates 85% for 2016-2020 and 88% in 2021-2022. When disaggregating the success data by race in the last 5 years (2017-2022) the Latino student rate was 88%.
  • The financial well-being and career success of alumni was measured by a financial measure/scale used by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). New Futures found their rates are higher than the national average for adults within the same demographic categories. For New Futures Latino Alumni the score was 57 versus the national Latino average of 51. New Futures Alumni with Some College or Associates had an average of 55 compared to 52 nationally. New Futures Alumni with Bachelor's Degree had a score of 56 versus 51 nationally.
  • An alumni survey from 2022 showed that 70% of alumni are satisfied or very satisfied with their current job and 63% reported that they are working in their desired career field.

2024 Call for Nominations: Nominations are open from February1 to March 15