By Don Krim
This Sunday is Revolution Day, commemorating Mexico’s transformative convulsion of a century ago. It was fought in bloody agony for cherished goals still dauntingly, tauntingly elusive.
Reformative social change is difficult to achieve. A battle won that begins as visionary hope then must stand upon a new front line of long-term, genuine rebuilding and follow-through, or it inevitably fails. Jóvenes Adelante works on that front line by providing solid, reliable support and guidance to underserved, high potential youth with the daring to pursue higher education and higher visions.
JA provides solid reliable financial support, mentoring, success skills programs, psychological assistance, English tutoring, and travel opportunities for career advancement. No one does it alone.
Héctor Granados Sandoval, a JA scholar in criminology and criminalism at Universidad de La Salle says, “Mexico has great advantages as well as tough problems. I believe that our country needs prepared young people, so that little by little they can change the situation we are going through. I do that by focusing on the career that I have chosen. I consider myself a committed, responsible person who dreams of having a good future but, above all, helping people prevent our society from getting worse.”
Nurturing the enormous untapped talent and potential in Mexico is why JA exists. One student at a time, JA supports young women and men like Hector and Daniel (see photo) who challenge themselves, their families, and communities.
JA graduates return to pueblos and colonias, sometimes their schools, modeling profound change that’s possible and within reach if they believe, truly revolutionizing the vistas of entire communities.
Leaders in San Miguel de Allende and the Bajío envision an internationally competitive region with strengths beyond tourism and real estate. How is that vision achievable without investing in local youth upon which to build such strengths? JA believes that future depends first and foremost upon education, and that higher education specifically, radically expands vision and expectations of the possible.
Nationally and statewide 74% of university students never make complete their studies, while 83% of JA students graduate. That’s a revolutionary difference.
We currently support 120 students. Next academic year we intend to select 35 more, continuing to unleash talent and potential through each stage of a university career: freshmen culture shock; excitement as vistas expand; transitions from classrooms to practical experiences; doubts as the post-university world gets ever closer; and persistent follow-through of professional licensure leading to practical employment. We have built a network of graduates that continues to help and support each other and JA’s current and aspiring applicants. Expanding its horizons, JA this year will support our graduates who seek a master’s degree for the first time.
There is nothing revolutionary about Nelson Mandela’s immortal words: “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” The question is whether or not we believe. Please believe with us. Sponsor a student. These are our kids. A new class selection process will begin in December. We cannot do it alone. Please visit jovenesadelante.org or contact firstname.lastname@example.org.