The Partners Program



Opportunities & Outcomes in Action!

At Partners, we believe that America should still be a place where hard work pays off, and not just for the extremely gifted, well-resourced, or very lucky.

For more than a quarter-century, we have provided opportunities for academic support and enrichment for motivated yet under-resourced Oakland middle school students and their families. Working with these young people, together we produce outcomes that truly make a difference in their academic and life trajectories.

We do this by working with low-income Oakland public middle school students and their families year-round, on their middle school campuses during the academic year and at College Prep during the summer. Our goals are two-fold:

1. To provide opportunities for those who seek them - for academic help, for enrichment activities, and for leadership development - free of charge to students and families who lack the resources to purchase this support in the marketplace.

2. To operate programs that produce outcomes that matter - improved grades, increased school engagement, love of learning, understanding of community responsibilities, access to high quality college preparatory high school and non-profit support programs, and admission to post-secondary educational opportunities with the needed scholarships and financial aid.

Research shows consistently that 4-year college graduation rates for students like ours who (a) are low-income, (b) attend urban public schools, and (c) come from racial and ethnic backgrounds under-represented on U.S. college campuses are shockingly low, hovering around 6 - 8%. For young men, cut that 6 - 8% figure in less than half.

Research also shows that a 4-year college degree has become the minimum educational gateway for the majority of high-wage, high-salary jobs being created in today's global economy. Thus, a college degree is also the gateway to a family wage, economic self-sufficiency, and giving back financially to one's community. 

In sharp contrast to this data, Partners alumni report graduating high school on time (98%), matriculating to post-secondary education (95% of high school graduates), and persisting through these studies (100% of post-secondary matriculants).

We are a community of many at Partners - middle school students and families, high school mentors and tutors, college and graduate school interns, professional teachers and generous supporters - that create these opportunities and outcomes for nearly 350 young people each year.

We need your help to keep this going and hope you will join us in this work. Indeed, we have an educational and economic crisis on our hands. There is so much to be done.

Thank you for taking the time to visit our site, and please let us know how we can partner together. 

Steve Berger, Board Chair
Fields Nelson, Director

Contact Us

The Partners Program
c/o The College Preparatory School
6100 Broadway
Oakland, CA 94618-1824

510-652-0111, X260 

Email: or click here.