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Application must be received by March 1, 2018.


Grants from The Ellis Trust are awarded to girls entering grades nine through twelve who meet the following criteria:

  • Live in Philadelphia
  • Live in a household where one or both parents are absent, or mentally or physically disabled
  • Meet the family income eligibility requirements for reduced-priced lunch under the National School Lunch Program
  • Have grades of “C” or better in major school subject
  • Are making academic progress toward timely graduation
  • Can prove their dependency status (name appears on their family’s tax return or DPA document).
  • Are in a family that does not own property other than their primary home

Please note: Single parent households are defined as households with one adult, over the age of 18, living in the household. This does not include adult children or grandparents claimed as dependents on tax returns.

Income Guidelines

Families of girls need to meet the income eligibility requirements for reduced-priced lunch under the National School Lunch Program. Gross family income (income before taxes) must not exceed the amounts listed below. Gross family income includes wages, salaries, Department of Public Assistance (DPA) payments, disability payments, worker’s compensation payments, Social Security payments, child support payments, etc. earned or received by the student and other family members living in the household during 2017, as well as any contributions from family members not living with the student.

 Family Size Maximum Income 
1 $22,311
2 $30,044
3 $37,777
4 $45,510
5 $53,243
6 $60,976
7 $68,709
8 $76,442
Add $7,733 for each additional person in a family with more than eight members.

Please note:

  • Applications are evaluated on a rolling basis.
  • The deadline for all required application materials is MARCH 1, 2018.
  • Mailed documents must be received by MARCH 1, 2018.
  • Application decision notifications will be released by MAY 15, 2018.

Launch the Online Application or Download PDF Application

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Mentor Application

First Name

Last Name

Date of Birth (mm/dd/yyyy)

Home Address

Home City

Home State

Home Zip

Personal Cell No.

Home Phone

Employer Information



Work Address

Work City

Work State

Work Zip

Work Phone

Cellular Phone



Preferred Mailing Address:

Preferred Contact Number:

Clearance Information
Do you have a valid driver’s license?

Do you have car insurance?

Have you ever been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor?

Are you under current indictment or has a distric/county
attorney accepted an official complaint for any criminal offenses?

All applicants will be asked to complete Child Abuse and Criminal Record Clearance Applications.
Name of Reference(1)

Phone Number

Email Address


Name of Reference(2)

Phone Number

Email Address


Personal Profile
College(s) Attended:

Degree(s) Attained (B.A., M.S., etc.) and Year(s) Graduated:


Volunteer and Community Activities:

Please check the activities and interests that apply to you:

Sports you play:

Sporting events you attend:

Other Interests:

Personal Profile Continued
When you were 15, what did you want to be when you grew up? Why?

Who or what was the biggest influence on your decision to attend college? Please briefly describe this influence and its impact on you.

What do you specifically hope to offer a high school student in a mentoring relationship?

Please describe any limitations or restrictions to the time you are available for mentoring responsibilities.

Do you have any transportation restrictions? (If yes, please explain.)

What are three special talents, skills or areas of expertise that you would like us to know about you?

Do you have any specific strengths (language skills, math skills, reading skills, etc.) that would be helpful for us to consider in matching you with a student?


I understand that the Sponsor-A-Scholar (“SAS”) mentor expectations include the following key points:

  • My official commitment to the SAS mentoring relationship begins when I am matched with my student and continues until my student completes his or her first year of college.
  • The SAS Program requires that I complete an orientation and requests that I attend at least two training sessions/mentor roundtables during the year.
  • SAS mentoring involves at least a weekly phone call and a monthly visit with the student.
  • I give Philadelphia Futures permission to use my name and photograph in its publications.
You must check this box before submitting your information.

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Para Padres y Guardianes

Padres de SAS y Guardianes

Parent 2

Philadelphia Futures está orgulloso de trabajar estrechamente con los padres y guardianes de los alumnos de nuestro Sponsor-A-Scholar (SAS) Programa para ayudar a su hijo/a a alcanzar su pleno potencial. Su participación activa en la vida académica del estudiante SAS es sumamente importante para el éxito de su hijo/a.

El Programa SAS sirve a estudiantes muy motivados que asisten a las escuelas secundarias públicas de Filadelfia. SAS comienza a trabajar con estudiantes en el 9no grado y les proporciona las herramientas y la orientación necesaria para tener éxito en la escuela secundaria, ser admitidos a la Universidad y obtener sus títulos.

Usted puede obtener más información sobre los criterios de elegibilidad SAS y ayudar a su niño a aplicar para el programa SAS.

For Parents and Guardians

Parent 2

Philadelphia Futures is proud to work closely with the parents and guardians of students in our Sponsor-A-Scholar (SAS) Program as you help your child reach his or her full potential. Your active participation in the academic life of your SAS student is extremely important to your child's success.

The SAS Program serves highly motivated students who attend Philadelphia's public high schools. SAS begins working with students in 9th grade and provides them with the tools and guidance needed to do well in high school, be admitted to college and earn their degrees.

You can learn more about the SAS eligibility criteria, and help your child apply to the SAS Program. 

For Educators

For Educators

For Prospective SAS Students

SAS Prospective Students

Your Path to College Starts Here.

Do you want to excel in high school, go to college and earn your college degree?

Do you see yourself succeeding in a career that you love?

Sponsor-A-Scholar students have an extraordinary record of success:
98% of SAS students go on to college immediately after high school.

Success in college and in life doesn't just happen. It takes vision, planning, commitment and a support team. Philadelphia Futures' Sponsor-A-Scholar (SAS) Program provides highly motivated Philadelphia high school students – just like you – with the resources and opportunities to make a successful journey to — and through — college. We begin working with students in 9th grade and provide them with the tools and guidance needed to do well in high school, be admitted to college and earn their degrees. When you are an SAS student, Philadelphia Futures is with you every step of the way.

The SAS Program offers students:

  • Individualized staff support through high school and college
  • Year-round academic enrichment: after-school classes, SAT preparation and summer programs on college campuses
  • The support of a mentor
  • Personalized college counseling and guidance activities, including college visits
  • Individual tutoring and use of an onsite computer lab
  • Career awareness activities
  • Extracurricular activities: Speech & Drama Club, Book Club, Stock Market Club, Performing Arts Writing Club, Robotics Club, Young Women Rising and National Parks Service Internship. 
  • Young Men's Initiative support
  • $6,000 for college-related expenses
  • Eligibility for scholarships to Philadelphia Futures' partner colleges
  • White-Williams Scholars Incentive Awards

"Step Up to Your Future": Philadelphia Futures Sponsor-A-Scholar Student Video from Philadelphia Futures on Vimeo.

The benefits of the Sponsor-A-Scholar Program extend into college. Our College Success services continue to provide students with individualized academic and personal support, and help with preparing for graduate school and careers. When SAS students graduate from college, they are prepared to succeed in the workplace and in graduate school. Being a Sponsor-A-Scholar student gives you the foundation you will need for a rich and rewarding life. 

SAS High School Program Components

Beginning in the 9th grade, Sponsor-A-Scholar (SAS) students participate in an extensive array of activities developed to prepare them for the demands of college. Key components of the Program include:

For Prospective and Current Mentors

Mentor 1

Mentor one student. Change two lives.

Philadelphia Futures' SAS Program is grounded in the belief that a caring and committed adult can make a significant difference in the life of a student. We recognize the profound impact that a mentor can have on a student's chance of graduating from high school, completing college and becoming economically self-sufficient.

What it Means to be an SAS Mentor

A mentor in the Sponsor-A-Scholar (SAS) Program is a supportive adult who serves as a role model, advocate and cheerleader to one college-bound high school student.  A mentor opens doors to new social, cultural and educational experiences and provides professional networks for a student.

Each mentor is matched with an individual SAS student and asked to commit to that student through, at least, the critical first year of college. Mentors are an integral part of our students' success.

Learn more about this opportunity by watching our video about mentoring in the SAS Program, and reading our mentoring materials

What it Takes to be a SAS Mentor

SAS Mentor 3Being a mentor in the SAS Program requires a profound belief in the power of education. Our mentors are all college graduates. Effective mentors need to be willing to take on the ups and downs, joys and challenges of a teenager's life. To their relationships, mentors bring:

Mentors make a long-term commitment to their students. Mentors are matched with students in 10th grade and work with them through, at least, the first year of college. Many relationships last a lifetime.

Mentors communicate with their students once a week and see their students at least monthly. They go on outings with their students to sporting events, cultural venues, restaurants and museums. They visit colleges, study for the SAT together or simply sit and talk.

Mentors provide opportunities. They help students create a vision for their future. Mentors are willing to make a place in their lives for their students. They listen, guide and inspire.

Mentors also:

  • Regularly communicate with Sponsor-A-Scholar Program staff
  • Participate in Philadelphia Futures' program activities and events
  • Attend mentor training, including semi-annual mentor roundtables
  • Provide exposure to professional work environments, networking or potential opportunities

We Are Here to Support You

Each SAS mentor and student is carefully and thoughtfully matched. Once you are matched with a student, the Philadelphia Futures staff is with you every step of the way. Our mentors receive training and are provided with guidance and encouragement from the Philadelphia Futures staff throughout their relationship with their student. All mentors also receive a comprehensive Mentor Handbook specifically designed for SAS mentors. 

The Young Men’s Initiative


Philadelphia Futures takes seriously its commitment to improving educational and life outcomes for the young men we serve. Launched in 2006, our Young Men's Initiative (YMI) provides gender-specific resources and support to our male Sponsor-A-Scholar (SAS) and College Connection students as they navigate high school and prepare for college and to lead fulfilling lives.

YMI offers targeted activities designed to:

  • Expose boys to male role models
  • Develop leadership potential and career awareness
  • Strengthen academic and personal skills
  • Recognize achievement and offer academic and cultural enrichment 
  • Create a positive peer group of college-bound young men
SAS High School

The Sponsor-A-Scholar (SAS) Program provides highly motivated Philadelphia public high school students with the tools, resources and opportunities necessary to succeed in high school, be admitted to college and earn their degrees. Philadelphia Futures begins working with students in ninth grade and continues to support students through college completion.

Since 1989, SAS has made the dream of college a reality for more than 1,000 first-generation-to-college students. Philadelphia Futures provides an array of comprehensive and personalized services, resources and programs to help students meet academic goals and become college ready.

Key components of the SAS Program include:
• Long-term, one-on-one mentoring
• Individualized staff support through high school and college
• Year-round academic enrichment: after-school classes, SAT preparation and summer programs on college campuses
• Personalized college counseling and guidance activities, including college visits
• Educational resources, including individual tutoring and use of an onsite computer lab
• Career awareness activities
• Gender-specific programming: Young Men's Initiative (YMI) and Young Women Rising (YMR)
• Extracurricular activities
• $6,000 for college-related expenses
• White-Williams Scholars Incentive Awards for high school sophomores, juniors and seniors who meet high academic standards