Leading Men Fellowship participants can earn an award of $20,000 per academic year, for a total of four consecutive academic years, and a maximum value of $80,000.

LMF participants

Cincinnati, Ohio, Oct. 2, 2023 – The Literacy Lab, a national non-profit organization that provides children – in communities experiencing racial and economic inequities – from age 3 through grade 3 with individualized, high-impact tutoring, today announced a new partnership with Cincinnati State Technical and Community College and Mount St. Joseph University to help diversify the teacher pipeline.

The Literacy Lab’s Leading Men Fellowship developed the program with the two Cincinnati-based schools to create a pathway to teaching as a profession for young men of color.

Fellows who complete a year of training and classroom service with the Leading Men Fellowship will receive nine credit-hours and a scholarship towards a degree in early childhood education at Cincinnati State and/or a $20,000 scholarship annually from Mount St. Joseph University upon enrollment in a bachelor’s program.

“I’m very excited about our new partnership with Cincinnati State and Mount St. Joseph,” said Ivan Douglas, national director of the Leading Men Fellowship. “This innovative program is supporting hundreds of young men of color across the country in pursuing their dreams of higher education. It also opens the door to personal and professional development opportunities for our Fellows while immediately increasing the pipeline of Black and Brown male teachers who serve as role models for students of color.”

The program, which aims to place more men of color in pre-K and elementary school classrooms, is available to current and former Fellows across the country. It’s also a much-needed resource for students in underserved communities.

“The Mount is proud to be partnering with The Literacy Lab to provide Leading Men Fellowship scholarships,” said H. James Williams, Ph.D., president of Mount St. Joseph University. “Our continual pursuit of excellence is shaped by a responsibility to live our mission through social justice. Certainly, providing young men of color with greater access to educational opportunities allows us to live our mission. These scholarships will enrich the lives of the recipients as well as our Mount Community, which embraces the diversity of cultures and beliefs.”         

Data shows the high school dropout rate is reduced by 40 percent when an economically disadvantaged Black male has at least one Black teacher in elementary school, yet less than 2% of all teachers in the country are men of color.

“As the data clearly shows, our society will benefit immensely if more young Black men bring their talents to the teaching profession,” said Dr. Monica Posey, president of Cincinnati State. “We are so delighted to be a partner in this effort, not only to provide college credits for those who complete their Leading Men Fellowship, but also to attract more young black men to consider this wonderful and noble profession.”   

The Leading Men Fellowship empowers and equips young men of color, ages 18-24, with opportunities in the field of education by serving as paid pre-K literacy tutors to help close the literacy gap in underserved and marginalized communities. The Fellowship currently has programming in seven regions throughout the country, including: Atlanta, Georgia; Baltimore, Maryland; Cincinnati, Ohio; Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Phoenix, Arizona; Portsmouth and Richmond, Virginia; and Washington, D.C.

For more information about the Mount’s Leading Men Fellowship Connections Scholars program, visit the Leading Men Fellowship page here.

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About The Leading Men Fellowship

The Literacy Lab’s Leading Men Fellowship creates opportunities for young men of color and increases representation in the field of education. Leading Men Fellows are young men of color who have recently graduated from high school and participate in a year-long, residency-style experience in which they provide evidence-based literacy support to pre-kindergarten students while receiving robust coaching and professional development and gaining valuable experience.

About The Literacy Lab

The Literacy Lab is a national non-profit organization that provides students – in communities experiencing racial and/or economic inequities – with evidence-based, culturally responsive literacy instruction as preparation for academic, professional, and personal success. The Literacy Lab partners with school districts to help achieve attainment gains by embedding rigorously trained tutors in early childhood centers and elementary schools.

About Mount St. Joseph University

As a Catholic institution rooted in the values of the Sisters of Charity, Mount St. Joseph University excels at serving the common good. Undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral students at the Mount are inspired to think beyond the classroom and redraw the bounds of what’s possible for their futures. This is accomplished through individualized educational experiences, a safe, secure campus environment, and an all-in commitment from faculty and staff to inspire students to reach their highest potential. The Mount fosters life-long learners who serve, care, and contribute to the world beyond their front doors. 

About Cincinnati State

Cincinnati State (www.cincinnatistate.edu) offers more than 140 associate degree, bachelor's degree, and certificate programs in business, health, engineering, humanities, sciences, culinary, information technologies, and public safety. Cincinnati State also offers a nationally recognized cooperative learning program and custom training through its Workforce Development Center.