Why Lead Up?
In Lincoln, of the Lincoln Public School students that begin college directly after high school, only 38 percent graduate. Also, according to Mayor Beutler, the number one problem identified by businesses expanding in our community is the availability of talent. We believe this identifies a huge opportunity for improvement in our community.

Why does this matter?
Communities with a higher percentage of college graduates not only experience a high rate of economic growth but also enjoy such things as lower crime and incarceration rates, higher civic engagement, higher volunteer and philanthropic giving and higher tax revenue and lower government spending. Helping our youth enter into college, graduate, and begin a career allows our community to flourish.

How do we change this?
Lead Up provides pathways for communities to invest in their own prosperity by building dynamic networks that connect youth to college and career. Through these powerful networks, students receive academic support, college preparation, and leadership development thus bridging the critical gap between academic learning and success in college and career.

Our Senior Leaders- A well-trained group of student leaders, serving as AmeriCorps members, are empowered to find fellow students who are good candidates for pursuing college, but who might not do so without additional support, and engage them in college and planning and preparation.

Cohorts-Organized by career interest and led by our trained Senior Leaders, students at North Star High School will be coached by their peers in college preparation and career planning.

Business Investors- Investors partner with their respective student cohort and through the commitment of financial and human resources, provide programs and activities that expose students to career options, the realities of the industry and the education needed to set them on a career path.
Simultaneously, Investors will be addressing Lincoln’s workforce needs and developing their future employees. Through these interactions, students become fluent not only in open pathways, but also in the critical success skills they will need along their journey; professional etiquette, workplace norms, diversity training, public speaking, candidacy skills such as interviewing and resume creation as well as active listening and internship preparedness.