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High Jump

High Jump’s mission is to bring equity to education for Chicago middle grade students who have exhibited academic ambition and potential, and who are of limited economic means. Since its founding in 1989, High Jump has set over 2,900 students on the path to thrive in middle school, high school, college and beyond. With an evidence-based approach that focuses on the second most important time for youth brain development, High Jump invests in Chicago’s next generation of leaders, connecting them with the people and resources they need to take risks, create opportunities, and achieve their dreams.

High Jump does this through a two-year, tuition-free academic enrichment program which consists of five weeks of daily instruction in the summer and two Saturdays each month during the school year. At three campuses and two pilot programs, High Jump annually serves over 500 middle school students, representing 48 zip codes across the city. These students – 98% of whom are youth of color, 95% of whom attend public schools – receive academic enrichment, social-emotional skills training, and high school counseling in a positive and resource-rich environment with the goals of attending superior college preparatory schools, thriving while they are there, and then gaining admission to highly regarded four-year colleges and universities.

To understand High Jump’s impact, look no further than college graduation rates. While 41% of all academically strong low-income students and 74% of all academically strong high-income students graduate from college within eight years of high school, 87% of High Jump alumni graduate from college within six years of high school. High Jump alumni go on to the best high schools in Chicago. Nationally, students graduate from some of the nation’s most esteemed colleges and universities, including the University of Chicago and Yale University, and go on to be engaged, impactful citizens and leaders in their fields.

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