The mission of the Boston Scholars Program is to Open Doors Through Educational Opportunities. To achieve our mission, Boston Scholars provides educational opportunity to disadvantaged Boston-area students through scholarships to tuition-based high schools and one-on-one mentoring. We also provide access to leadership development opportunities. The Boston Scholars Program was founded in 2003 by a group of Boston-area young professionals, who desired to become more involved in their community.
Boston, though an established business and social hub of New England, has some of Massachusetts' poorest performing students as measured by the Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS). These disadvantaged students are typically raised in inner city neighborhoods and have a difficult time getting the opportunities available to more fortunate children. Unfortunately, even if motivated to succeed, many of our young citizens lack an equal opportunity to secure a better future for themselves and their families. The Boston Scholars Program acts as a critical element in breaking this cycle by providing these disadvantaged children with tuition scholarships and mentoring relationships during their critical and formative years.
During our initial year of operation, the 2004-05 school year, the Boston Scholars Program is providing scholarships and mentoring services to eleven disadvantaged students who have been accepted to private high schools. In addition to receiving financial assistance, these "Boston Scholars" are assigned qualified mentors who help guide them through the challenges of high school and prepare them for success in their college years and beyond. Both the financial award and the mentoring program last the term of the Boston Scholar's high school education.
In order to reach those who can most benefit from the Boston Scholars Program, we partner with select junior high or middle schools as well as key organizations that have a substantial involvement in these communities. Our Junior High Partner Schools are located in Dorchester and Jamaica Plain and include Epiphany, Mother Caroline Academy, and Nativity Preparatory School. Our partner mentoring organization, Big Brothers of Massachusetts Bay, has an established presence in these inner city communities. The Boston Scholars Program continues to seek additional partner schools and organizations to most effectively reach Boston's disadvantaged children.
Boston Scholars are selected based on four criteria: 1) individual achievement and enthusiasm 2) academic potential and integrity 3) financial need 4) leadership and community involvement. All Boston Scholars are expected to exercise academic integrity, demonstrate leadership skills, participate in community service, meet frequently with their mentors, and attend fall and spring program events. Our hope and expectation is that all Boston Scholars will continue on to reputable four year colleges and universities. We ask Parents, Scholars, and Mentors to make a written commitment to comply with the expectations of our Program.
Generous donors to the Boston Scholars Program provide the funding that enables us to continue our mission. Donations are welcome by credit card through our website, or by credit card or check by mail. We encourage donors to commit to funding a student for a period of four years, but we welcome one-time donations of all sizes. The Boston Scholars Program is a non-profit organization operating under the laws of the state of Massachusetts and the Internal Revenue Service code. We have received 501c3 nonprofit tax status, so donations are tax deductible to the extent provided by law.