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



Leadership Roundtables

YMI’s bi-weekly Leadership Roundtables provide young men with a safe forum to explore relevant cultural, social and political issues. These interactive, educational meetings offer young men the opportunity to engage in respectful dialogue, and articulate their own opinions, goals and needs.

Field Trips and Team Building Exercises

Team-building and leadership development activities include community service projects, attending sporting events, and cultural excursions such as museum visits, outings to a restaurant and experiencing new Philadelphia neighborhoods.

College and Career Awareness

College and career awareness opportunities - including our annual YMI Career Day - expose boys to the expectations and responsibilities of college and the workplace. Activities include visits to a wide range of professional settings to explore potential career paths.

Prominence Monthly Bulletin

Prominence is a monthly newsletter for the young men and their mentors. The publication highlights YMI activities and field trips, reports on Leadership Roundtable discussions and spotlights the "Man of the Month" - a student recognized for his accomplishments in school, Philadelphia Futures' Pre-College Programs and the community. Read the most recent issue of "Prominence" here. 

Invitation to the Community to Get Involved

IMG 9272

Philadelphia Futures takes seriously our commitment to improving educational and life outcomes for young men. We invite our community members to join the Young Men's Initiative to provide more resources and support to our male scholars as they navigate through high school and prepare for college.

The young men in our Pre-College Programs face many obstacles and powerful negative messages in their schools and neighborhoods. The Young Men's Initiative guides them on a positive path towards a college degree and a successful future.

Become a Mentor

Philadelphia Futures believes that a caring, committed adult can make a significant difference in a student's chance of graduating from high school and completing college. Philadelphia Futures needs male mentors who can serve as role models for young men in our Sponsor-A-Scholar (SAS) Program. Mentors open doors to new social, cultural and educational experiences and provide professional networks that our students often lack. Find out what it takes to change a life.

Facilitate a Leadership Roundtable

Share your professional expertise with the YMI Program by facilitating a Leadership Roundtable for our young men.

Host a YMI Visit at Your Workplace

Invite boys in YMI to visit your workplace to develop a network of college-educated male role models, expand their awareness of potential careers and learn about professional etiquette.

Create Opportunities

Donate tickets to a sporting event or activity that allows our young men to enjoy a special experience.

Make a Contribution to YMI

Please consider making a financial gift designated for YMI to help fund targeted programs for our young men.

Donate Now

Philadelphia Futures
230 South Broad Street, 7th Floor 
Philadelphia, PA 19102

Expand Our Network

Introduce Philadelphia Futures to your colleagues, clients and other members of your community who would be interested in supporting our efforts.

To learn more about how you can get involved, please contact Jonathan Edwards, Co-Director, Young Men's Initiative, by This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or telephone at 215.790.1666, Ext. 449.