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We guide, connect, finance, and engage students to achieve their dreams of career success!

EVERY student is connected to a great career!

We guide, connect, finance, and engage students to achieve their dreams of career success!

EVERY student is connected to a great career!

We guide, connect, finance, and engage students to achieve their dreams of career success!

EVERY student is connected to a great career!

OUR MISSION

Set Students Up for   Success

Opportunity Scholars CONNECTS families, schools, and businesses to create a LOW COST career pathway to high paying jobs for low/middle income high school students; creating economic mobility in underrepresented groups, while building a pipeline of professional and technical workers to grow LOCAL businesses.

By connecting students, families, educators, and businesses, Opportunity Scholars builds a pipeline of professional, career, and technology workers to invigorate local economies.

EVERY student — regardless of life circumstance — will be empowered for success!

Scholar  Success Stories

Valentin

“Opportunity Scholars has helped me a lot with selecting a career path that was correct for me.  I am currently studying  Accounting and Opportunity Scholars has helped me a lot with college because they gave me hope to know that it is possible to go to college, to find and work and study the thing that you love.
OS helped me with filling out the basics when one goes to college.”

Josue

“Opportunity Scholars is giving me the guidance and resources to be succesful and achieve my goal in getting a job as a drafter”

Tihany

“My dream is to be an ESL teacher—to help others like I was helped. Thank you, Opportunity Scholars, for supporting my dreams!”

Olivia

” The coaches, they are absolutely amazing. They have guided me through every process, they have answered any questions – and if they didn’t know the answer, they got it and got back to me. They check on me every so often to make sure I’m doing ok with the transition.  And just everything. They’ve been there every step of the way with every single question I’ve had and it really helped me.”

Ivan

“Opportunity scholars has helped me reach the academic goals my parents hoped for me to achieve. Their assistance has and will continue to help me pursue the future careers I have always admired!”

Hazel

“Opportunity Scholars has changed my educational life drastically. I have been able to dual enroll in all of my classes, not worry about possible fees, and even introduced me to possibly getting my associates in science during high school.”

Valentin

“Opportunity Scholars has helped me a lot with selecting a career path that was correct for me.  I am currently studying  Accounting and Opportunity Scholars has helped me a lot with college because they gave me hope to know that it is possible to go to college, to find and work and study the thing that you love.
OS helped me with filling out the basics when one goes to college.”

Josue

“Opportunity Scholars is giving me the guidance and resources to be succesful and achieve my goal in getting a job as a drafter”

Tihany

“My dream is to be an ESL teacher—to help others like I was helped. Thank you, Opportunity Scholars, for supporting my dreams!”

Olivia

” The coaches, they are absolutely amazing. They have guided me through every process, they have answered any questions – and if they didn’t know the answer, they got it and got back to me. They check on me every so often to make sure I’m doing ok with the transition.  And just everything. They’ve been there every step of the way with every single question I’ve had and it really helped me.”

Ivan

“Opportunity scholars has helped me reach the academic goals my parents hoped for me to achieve. Their assistance has and will continue to help me pursue the future careers I have always admired!”

Hazel

“Opportunity Scholars has changed my educational life drastically. I have been able to dual enroll in all of my classes, not worry about possible fees, and even introduced me to possibly getting my associates in science during high school.”

OUR PROGRAM

3 Steps to   Success

PHASE 1

High School

  • Academic preparation
  • Job training
  • Part-time employment
  • Dual Enrollment
  • Connect with Student’s Families
  • Career Coaching

PHASE 2

Education and Skills Training

  • Direct to Employment
  • Assist Students and Families with program guidance in career and technical education, and 2-year or 4-year degrees
  • Coach Students and their families to minimize educational costs

PHASE 3

Employment

  • Obtain a high-wage job
  • Begin repayment of education costs
  • Fill much needed skilled & professional workforce
  • Continue Scholar & Family Connections

Support Our Program

DONATE

OUR IMPACT

The Theory of   Change

  • We engage the families as part of the team
  • We continuously support students from high school to career education to high-wage employment
  • We offer holistic emotional support, coaching and financial resources to low and middle income students and families through culturally aligned coaches
  • We connect local students and families with local training to work in local businesses in their community
  • Opportunity Scholars is efficient, affordable, sustainable and scalable
  • Opportunity Scholars targeted outreach successfully engages families and students that are difficult to reach
  • Our coaches compliment school personnel in area high schools
  • Our diverse coaches work with students and their families to support their career pathways
  • Opportunity Scholars Education Fund finances up-front pathway costs for our scholars
  • Supports socio-economic equality
  • Building Trades: Placement in Earn & Learn Apprenticeship Program – On the job training and mentorship
  • Degreed Program: Placement in desired degree program and compatible local job and access to financial resources through Opportunity Scholars Education Fund
  • Develop life skills through transformational learning pathway
    • Greater confidence, competence and hope
    • Readiness to succeed in desired field (hard and soft skills)
  • Increase in income allowing students to focus on the life they want to live and impact others lives including decrease in social services needed
  • Educated and diverse students with skills to work in their field of choice
  • Replenish Opportunity Scholars Education Fund
  • Students: Meaningful careers that create social mobility
  • Families: End generational cycles of poverty
  • Communities: Skilled workforce to support local businesses and economic vitality
  • Society: Reduction of inequality and socio-economic division
  • Opportunity Scholars is efficient, affordable, sustainable and scalable
  • We engage the families as part of the team
  • We continuously support students from high school to career education to high-wage employment
  • We offer holistic emotional support, coaching and financial resources to low and middle income students and families through culturally aligned coaches
  • We connect local students and families with local training to work in local businesses in their community
  • Opportunity Scholars is efficient, affordable, sustainable and scalable
  • Opportunity Scholars targeted outreach successfully engages families and students that are difficult to reach
  • Our coaches compliment school personnel in area high schools
  • Our diverse coaches work with students and their families to support their career pathways
  • Opportunity Scholars Education Fund finances up-front pathway costs for our scholars
  • Supports socio-economic equality
  • Building Trades: Placement in Earn & Learn Apprenticeship Program – On the job training and mentorship
  • Degreed Program: Placement in desired degree program and compatible local job and access to financial resources through Opportunity Scholars Education Fund
  • Develop life skills through transformational learning pathway
    • Greater confidence, competence and hope
    • Readiness to succeed in desired field (hard and soft skills)
  • Increase in income allowing students to focus on the life they want to live and impact others lives including decrease in social services needed
  • Educated and diverse students with skills to work in their field of choice
  • Replenish Opportunity Scholars Education Fund
  • Students: Meaningful careers that create social mobility
  • Families: End generational cycles of poverty
  • Communities: Skilled workforce to support local businesses and economic vitality
  • Society: Reduction of inequality and socio-economic division
  • Opportunity Scholars is efficient, affordable, sustainable and scalable

OUR TEAM

Dedicated   Change-Makers

Get to know the people who lead our effort to create pathways for every student.

Our  Partners

We are deeply grateful to the many partners who support Opportunity Scholars as we work with students to find and finance their pathways to career success.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are the most frequently asked questions to help you get started.

Opportunity Scholars provides pathways for career success to low and middle income students who wish to pursue a career in Healthcare, Education, Accounting, Information Technology or Building Trades and Construction. Students must be authorized to work in the United States, maintain passing grades, seek local training and education pathways. View Student Eligibility Checklist

The program provides three primary areas of support:

  • A life success coach who is a liason/connection between the student, their family, their school, education, and employment.
  • Financial support to fund education expenses.

Parents and guardians are engaged in one-on-one conversations with Opportunity Scholars program staff/coaches as well as periodic group discussions. On occasion, Opportunity Scholars staff may engage pastors, coaches, family friends, and school staff. These people may be asked to participate in the family discussions to offer additional support.

Opportunity Scholars works hard to assist students in identifying career pathways which fit their interests and abilities but understands that sometimes students change their minds. We work with each student to determine if the new career pathway aligns with Opportunity Scholars. If it is aligned, we’ll continue to assist them in their new career choice. If it is not a designated Opportunity Scholars pathway, we will refer them to resources that can guide them in their new direction.

The Opportunity Scholars program reduces the cost of post-secondary education by at least 75% of traditional four-year residential university expenses. Of the 25% not covered by grants, earnings from career-related work, scholarships, and other forms of student financial assistance, most students will repay the remaining balance through an Income Share Agreement (ISA). Only AFTER students have completed their course of study AND are earning a good-paying job will students be required to pay a small percentage of their new salary until repayment is complete. This amount will vary according to each student’s situation. If a student’s annual income is less than the level of income defined as a “basic sustainable living income,” the student’s ISA payments are deferred until their income reaches or exceeds that level. The basic sustainable income level will be adjusted periodically to reflect changes in cost of living and other factors. (Note: Some Opportunity Scholars business partners have agreed to pay student education/ISA debt back if the student works for them. You can ask your counselor for a list of these employers.)

Students who join the Opportunity Scholars program agree to obtain their training and subsequent employment in the Shenandoah Valley or Northern Virginia. If the student moves outside of the Shenandoah Valley or Northern Virginia area, in most circumstances, they will have to leave the Opportunity Scholars program. If an Opportunity Scholars partner employer is paying the ISA repayment obligation on behalf of the student (now that the student is an employee), the employer will normally cease to pay the student’s repayment obligation once the student ceases to work for them. Students who leave the area during their educational pathway will leave the Opportunity Scholars program and will repay their education/ISA debt back to Opportunity Scholars.

CAREERS

Would you like to   join our team?

If you are interested in joining our team, please send resume to: kari@opportunityscholars.org.

Open Positions: