Mar 06, 2012

INROADS Continues Touching Lives with re-launch of High School Mentorship Program

Recently, highlighted the current disparity among talented high school students in the Chicago area. “Only 74% of Black and Latino students were reported to have graduated from high school, compared with 92.2% of white students.” INROADS College Links program provides assistance to high school students in the community by preparing and strengthening the pipeline of underserved talent from high school through the higher ranks of corporate America. INROADS College Links will kick-off the nationwide re-launch with events in Chicago and Washington D.C. on March 6th and March 7th.

On Tuesday March 6, INROADS College Links program will return to its roots in Chicago for INROADS Night Chicago. The event will be held at 7pm at:

Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT)
Hermann Hall Ballroom
3241 South Federal Street
Chicago, IL 60616

Wednesday March 7, INROADS Night D.C. will be held at 7pm at:
Howard University
School of Business (Auditorium)
2600 Sixth Street
Washington, DC 20059
Media are invited to attend for event coverage, photo ops and interviews. Please RSVP to

Through a grant from The Executive Leadership Council (ELC), the college links program has been made possible. The ELC is the nation’s premier leadership organization comprised of the most senior African-American corporate executives in Fortune 500 companies

The INROADS Pre-College Component was developed in 1976, to address the lack of technical majors recruited in the Chicago area for the INROADS College Component. The program recruited talented high school students and exposed them to careers in technology, engineering, and computer science.  The program consisted of year-round programming that included educational instruction and corporate visits.  The INROADS Pre-College Program throughout its history has existed in nearly 20 cities.

The Extreme Need for ELT to Partner with INROADS College Links: African American high school students are 50% less likely than Caucasian students to graduate high school, enroll in college, and graduate college to enter professional careers, based on U.S. Department of Education statistics.   African American students interested in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math), business careers, are provided the opportunity to participate in College Links. The process will provide training and career exploration to assist in their career path development.

INROADS Alumni, now executives and many CEOs, launched careers in the pre-college program followed by INROADS Internships [process  including: Steve Davis, CEO/Board Chair for Bob Evans Farms (Photo above right mentoring Interns), Teri P. McClure, General Counsel for UPS and ELC member, and Jeffery Perry, Americas Operational Transaction Services Practice Leader for EY and an ELC Member.

INROADS President and CEO, Forest T. Harper, Jr. stated, “We deeply appreciate the ELF’s grant and the chance to have a measurable impact on African American youth through The College Links Program. The ELC and INROADS share a common purpose to ‘Transform Corporate America’ through diverse and inclusive leadership, fueled by early career development for underserved youth. The College Links Program meets this objective by starting the executive leadership preparation process at the high school level, thus creating an earlier pipeline for the emerging generation of diverse executive leaders.” (Click here to Forest Harper's Thank You video to the ELF)

 “The INROADS model is a natural complement to the ELC’s work in building the pipeline of the next generation of African American corporate executives and board directors,” said Arnold Donald, president and CEO of the ELC. “INROADS College Links Program is so closely aligned with ELC’s pipeline development efforts that we hope to continue this relationship beyond the term of our grant,” said Lynton Scotland, an executive with Sustainable Star and co-chair of ELC’s Community Impact Committee, along with co-chair Susan Chapman of American Express.

Click here to view the official College Links Website!