We EMPOWER Students to Thrive.


Scholar Training: Scholars learn to advocate for themselves by identifying social issues that are important to them and their communities. Through networking, public speaking, and research opportunities, Scholars learn the importance of being engaged, active, and educated about the world around them. Scholars work with community leaders to better advocate for their representative communities to ensure that all voices are heard.

Partners: Battle Born Progress | ACLU | Anti-Defamation League

Core’s leadership utilizes data collected by staff and based on performance measurements to educate and inform decision makers in the Las Vegas community about issues that are facing our families and Scholars. We do this by providing testimony, data, and thought partnership to those working in and outside of the equity space.

Building strong networks of support (parents and siblings)

Core works with Scholar families to identify needs within their households by performing needs assessments and home visits. Once needs are identified, our social workers provide “warm hand offs” to appropriate community partners. Our social workers follow up to ensure families’ immediate needs have been met while beginning the work of helping families find long-term, sustainable solutions. Core empowers families to build their own networks of support so that the focus can shift from surviving to thriving.

Partners: First Med | Three Square Food Bank | Legal Aid Center of S. NV | Project 150 | HELP of Southern Nevada | Regional Transportation Commission | Just One Project

Character Education and Leadership Development

Facilitated after-school, two hours a week, Core’s leadership and character education curriculum has been specifically developed to be relevant, age appropriate and impactful to the Scholars who participate in the program.

Character strengths like self-control, curiosity, and gratitude are vital to social and emotional well-being, physical health, and reaching individual potential. Overwhelming scientific data shows that developing strong character generates greater academic outcomes, better decision making, healthier relationships, empathy, and greater citizenship. By training and developing interpersonal, intrapersonal, and intellectual strengths, Core Scholars build the skills needed to make good decisions, have a growth mindset, show empathy toward others, and in general exhibit high emotional intelligence.

Core’s Emerging Leaders Lab is an in-school, enrichment class offered to students at West Prep Academy who have been identified by school administrators as having leadership potential. These students are not in the traditional Core program. Students receive character education and leadership development including learning from guest speakers, performing community service, and being empowered to pursue leadership opportunities both in and outside of school.

Community Service & Service Learning

Scholars work with Core staff to identify non-profit organizations and community initiatives they are curious about and the Scholars plan community service projects once a month. Service is a way for Scholars to display what they have learned in Character Education, develop empathy, and invest in their community, just as the community has invested in each of their success. Scholars complete 50 hours of service, annually.

Individual and Group Mentoring

The Core Mentorship Program aims to bring positive community role models into the lives of our Scholars to enhance their personal and professional growth. With guidance and feedback provided by their mentors, Scholars learn empowering life skills such as goal-setting, problem-solving, relationship-building, and accountability as they create and pursue their own personal goals. Core mentors are matched with mentees based on similar interests, personalities and expectations, and commit to working with their mentees one-on-one for 4 hours a month for at least one year. Mentors and mentees are given the flexibility and autonomy to plan their own meeting times and outing activities, providing more freedom for the mentoring relationship to grow uniquely and organically. The Core Mentorship Program currently has 45 active mentors, and more than half have continued their mentorship beyond the one-year minimum.

Core mentors also work with Scholars in larger groups through a project-based approach. In 2016, Chef Natalie Young launched “chow. to the core,” an apprenticeship program designed to teach Core Scholars the ins and outs of the culinary industry. Through workshops, field trips, and on-the-job tasks, Scholars learn everything from food prep to culinary skills to customer service. Mentoring partnerships with dedicated community partners like Chef Natalie allow our Scholars to gain valuable experience, build new skills, and prepare to become working young professionals.

Program Outcomes