1 in 6 Americans currently live below the poverty line, the highest rate since the 1960′s.
Education is often cited as the solution- people with college degrees earn up to one million dollars more in their lifetimes than those with just a high school diploma.
Yet, 80% of students drop out of community college, and lack of money is the most cited reason for dropping out; students just can’t afford books, transportation to school, and the opportunity cost of not taking a minimum wage job. A recent Gates Foundation study about college drop out rates reports that:
And 71% said if there were more programs that offered hands-on learning and work experience, they would have been less likely to drop out.
Additionally, as most job growth is going to industries that demand technical skills and familiarity with information technology, equipping our youth with the tools of a college education and specialized training is more important than ever. Tragically, low-income communities are being left out of this newly emerging digital economy due to inadequate education and accessibility.
SamaUSA aims to bring opportunity to areas with high poverty and unemployment by training low-income students how to find and succeed in online work. Through the SAMAUSA model, low-income students can access a new economy and gain critical 21st century skills that will generate new sources of income and pathways out of poverty.
Cover photo by vedphoto.com