Philadelphia Union Foundation's iAM Project is done in partnership with BIMBO Bakeries USA, Lincoln Financial Group, Neumann University, and the Durant Family Foundation. The iAM Project is a program that supports aspirational high school students from low-income backgrounds in Chester to maximize their personal, academic and professional potential, and to prosper.
The iAM Project leverages a network of inspirational speakers, academic and professional mentors, innovative links to industry, universities and internship providers to foster the knowledge, skills and interests that will afford our scholars a better future and a brighter hope. The program focuses on three core pillars: inspiration, aspiration, and mentorship.
The program’s three core pillars - inspiration, aspiration, and mentorship - will manifest over the course of the school year in the following ways:
Inspiration | Inspirational Speaker Series (7th-12th grade)
The iAM Project – Inspirational Speaker Series The iAM Project’s Inspirational Speaker Series feeds a growth mindset. Our speakers encourage students to look beyond their immediate environment, to open their eyes, to consider unthought-of opportunities, and to broaden their horizons. Students hear stories from people who have walked in their shoes, who understand the challenges they face and who overcame difficulties and beat the odds: “Yes, we can.” The Inspirational Speaker Series - hosted by our partners at Neumann University - happens three times per year: Spring, Summer and Thanksgiving. The primary audience is the 350-strong 7th-12th Grade student body of Chester Charter Scholars Academy. The inaugural speaker was in April 2022 with Jimmy White IV, a national award-winning youth/veteran advocate, a TEDx speaker, a Leadership Philadelphia alumnus, and a GW Bush Center Presidential scholar. In November 2022, students listed to Rich Kleiman, co-founder of 35V and Boardroom as well as long-time manager of Kevin Durant.