Chicago nonprofit and the NBA Foundation partner to coach students through college admissions

Bottom Line announced it has received a significant multi-year grant from the NBA Foundation to support its strategic investment in innovative organizational, programmatic and partnership improvements to bring equity and economic inclusion to more first-generation students, including thousands of black and African American, to promote. recognize young people.

Bottom Line works with first-generation graduate students from low-income backgrounds with trained 1:1 advisors to get into college, graduate and go far in life through career empowerment. The organization’s evidence-based model has been delivered to more than 19,000 students throughout Massachusetts, New York and Illinois since 1997 with unprecedented success. The historic college graduation rate of 75% is double the national average, and the bottom line is that students are earning almost twice their family average in their first job.

While Bottom Line serves more than 7,000 high school and college students each year, only 30% of attendees identify as Young Men of Color (YMOC). To address this discrepancy, Bottom Line has identified improved recruitment and services for black and brown male students as one of its top organizational priorities in the coming years.

“We are proud to partner with Bottom Line, who have consistently demonstrated the impact of their programs in addressing racial disparities in wealth, employment and education,” said Greg Taylor, executive director of the NBA Foundation. “This grant furthers the foundation’s continued commitment to driving economic progress in the black community, and we are excited about the growth of Bottom Line’s reach.”

According to data from the NBA Foundation, among high school graduates, only 50% of black students have completed post-secondary education, compared to 67% of white students. Only 40% of black students who attend four-year universities graduate, compared to 64% of white students. In addition, the middle white family owns more than 10 times the wealth of the middle black family.

Bottom Line CEO Steve Colón commented, “Evidence shows that first-generation graduate students from low-income families are more likely to graduate from college when they receive personalized guidance and mentoring. But despite the crucial difference this support can make, young people of color are less likely to receive it than their peers. This generous grant from the NBA Foundation will allow us to fill that gap, resulting in higher college graduation rates for YMOC and greater earning power throughout their careers.”

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