JPMorgan Chase & Co. is proud to announce the expansion of The Fellowship Initiative (TFI) in three cities: Chicago, Los Angeles and New York City.

Originally launched in 2010 in New York City, TFI enrolls young men of color in a comprehensive, hands-on enrichment program that includes academic, social and emotional support to help them achieve personal and professional success.

The 24 Fellows who completed the program achieved remarkable results:


graduated from high school on time


accepted into 4-year colleges

$8.4 million

in institutional awards and scholarship funds awarded

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  • “Helping young black and Latino men overcome the obstacles they face is an urgent challenge that has been too long ignored. In New York City, we created a public-private partnership called the Young Men’s Initiative to confront the challenge head-on. We need more civic-minded companies and organizations to step up join this work, and I congratulate JPMorgan Chase for being a leader in this effort and for making a real difference in the lives of young men of color in our city."

    Michael bloomberg, former Mayor of new York City
  • “In Chicago our goal is 100% college-ready, 100% college-bound for every child, and that is what the Fellowship Initiative achieves for these young men who participate. Having a mentor that unlocks their potential and unleashes their talents in a constructive safe environment is the strongest tool there is for transforming lives. These opportunities not only benefit the young people who take advantage of them, they benefit our whole society, because when one young person succeeds in life, it is a win for our country.”

    rahm emanuel, Mayor of Chicago
  • “As the largest school district in the nation, we know that programs like the JPMorgan Chase Fellowship Initiative provide invaluable academic and social supports to our young men of color. I’m thrilled that The Fellowship Initiative is expanding in New York City giving additional students a chance to reach their individual potential."

    Bill de Blasio, Mayor of new York City
  • I’m pleased that JPMorgan Chase’s Fellowship Initiative will help young men of color in Los Angeles create opportunities for personal and economic success. I'm confident the academic support and leadership training offered to these students will help them prepare for college and get the skills they need to start rewarding careers."

    Eric Garcetti, Mayor of Los angeles
  • "The Fellowship Initiative has been more than just a program to me. It's been a family, a brotherhood and a challenge."

    Tafari John-King, TFI Fellow and Harvard University, Class of 2017
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    About the Fellowship Initiative

    Too many young people face daunting odds as they attempt to navigate the challenges of high school and the prospect of college and the workplace. For young men of color, particularly those from economically distressed communities, poor educational opportunities and few positive professional role models can put high school graduation and the economic promise of a college degree out of reach.

    Beginning in 2010, JPMorgan Chase launched The Fellowship Initiative (TFI) in New York City to see if the right combination of intensive academic and leadership training could help young men of color complete their high school educations prepared to excel in high quality, four-year colleges and universities. This pilot demonstrated that with a comprehensive enrichment program, these students were able to rise to the challenge, work hard and expand their own expectations of what they could achieve.

    Backpacking in the country

    Recognizing the power of TFI to change lives, JPMorgan Chase decided to continue the program in New York, expand it to two new cities – Chicago and Los Angeles – and grow the number of young men served in each city to 40.

    JPMorgan Chase is proud of its commitment to incubate and grow innovative projects like TFI that help young people from economically-disadvantaged communities gain access to the knowledge, skills and experiences they need to compete in an ever-changing global economy.

    The Need

    Many young men of color from economically disadvantaged communities do not have the educational opportunities and support systems they need to help them achieve their potential. They often lack professional role models and stable community support systems, fail to complete high school, and face high rates of poverty and incarceration. Despite the rise in high school graduation rates nationwide, the graduation rate for young men of color is far below that of their non-minority peers.footnote 1 We know that competing in today's economy requires more than a high school degree, and real economic opportunity requires much more.

    The Approach

    Our mission is to help TFI's Fellows acquire the skills, knowledge and experiences they need to succeed in high school and college. Unlocking real opportunity requires a broad-based and integrated approach – one that enhances the quality of the educational, social, emotional and economic aspects of the young men's lives. The TFI approach incorporates multiple points of interaction with the Fellows and involves the commitment of our employees' time as well as our financial resources.

    High Touch: Fellows were required to attend TFI programming three Saturdays a month, after-school sessions twice a month, and at least a month of intensive summer programming.

    Comprehensive: Programming includes academic enrichment, immersive experiential learning, leadership development, social and emotional support and college admissions coaching. TFI also educates and supports families throughout the college planning process.

    The Elements

    TFI built on the best research on youth development and partnered with leading educational organizations to support the Fellows' academic, personal and professional development.

    Academics: TFI Fellows come to JPMorgan Chase offices three times every month throughout the academic year for tutoring, which adds 300+ academic hours to the public school calendar each year.

    College Preparation: Fellows receive pre-college support including SAT and ACT prep classes, college and financial aid advice, college tours and help with scholarships, fee waivers, personal statements and college applications.

    Leadership: TFI programming includes robust leadership development and experiential learning opportunities for Fellows to test themselves and practice new skills, fostering personal growth, self-confidence and perseverance.

    Mentoring: Each Fellow is paired with a dedicated JPMorgan Chase mentor who provides regular guidance about academic issues, college planning, financial aid and other career pathways over the course of the program. Fellows also have numerous opportunities to meet successful professionals of color across a broad range of careers, from White House staff to college professors.

    Social Support and Networks: Supporting the Fellows' development outside academics is critical to setting the stage for their personal growth. This approach helps the Fellows manage the challenges of their daily lives, resolve interpersonal conflicts, maintain social relationships that reinforce their academic and personal development and boost their self esteem. It also builds communication and trust among the teachers, school counselors and TFI staff with each Fellow and his family.

    The Students


    The 24 New York City TFI Fellows who completed the multi-year pilot program began in the summer of 2010, prior to their sophomore year.

    The Fellows completed the most intensive portion of the program during their high school years, but the program did not end with their high school diplomas. TFI will continue to provide its graduates with support services and coaching through college graduation – plus the opportunity for summer internships at JPMorgan Chase.

    In 2014, JPMorgan Chase is expanding the program to serve 120 young men each in New York City, Chicago, and Los Angeles (40 in each city). By working closely with the new class of Fellows beginning in their sophomore year of high school, we will build on what we learned from the first cohort to help these new Fellows gain the knowledge, experiences and skills they need to succeed in the college and the workforce.

    The Results

    College Entrance Exams

    chart The above chart shows an average SAT score of 1536 for Fellows compared to the national average of 1500. It also shows an average ACT score of 21.7 for Fellows compared to the national average of 21.1

    College Acceptance

    envelope icon 9

    Average number of acceptance letters each Fellow received

    graduation cap icon 100%

    Fellows accepted into
    four-year colleges

    building icon 70%

    Fellows enrolled in colleges rated “Very” to “Most Competitive”

    Scholarships and Financing

    $8.4 million

    Institutional awards and private scholarships awarded to students in 2013


    Fellows who had 90% or more of college costs covered by grants and scholarships


    Fellows awarded the prestigious Gates Millennium Scholarship

    U.S. Dept. of Education, National Center for Education Statistics. Retrieved June 2014 from