The Summer Search Model new
Sophomore Year Summer Experience Number One Junior Year Summer Experience Number Two Senior Year College or Post Secondary Alumni Network

Sophomore Year

Starting as sophomores, Summer Search students are paired with a professional staff mentor for 1-on-1 mentoring conversations. They also participate in group mentoring sessions where students meet with their mentor and a group of fellow high school peers.

In these student-led conversations and group mentoring sessions, students engage in activities, reflection, and discussion to support identity development, career exploration, financial literacy, and other practical skill development.

Summer Experience Number One

Summer Search students are awarded scholarships to participate in summer experiences after their sophomore and junior years. These are opportunities for growth and connection that are both challenging and empowering.

Junior Year

As juniors, students continue with mentoring and begin to think about their plans after high school. Students partner with their mentor to select a summer experience that supports their interests and aspirations.

Summer Experience Number Two

The second summer experience will range from wilderness expeditions, to cultural and service trips, as well as academic or career-related programs. Students partner with their mentor to decide which opportunities best fit their interests and aspirations.

Senior Year

Students partner with us to navigate toward their post-secondary dreams. This could mean going to college (We help 97% of our Seniors get accepted to college.) It could also mean starting a trade, business, or other adventure.


  • Students continue to have conversations with their mentors (either 1 on 1 or group sessions.)
  • Students continue discussing post-secondary plans/goals. They start taking action by applying to colleges/programs/internships.
  • Students attend Summer Search Spring Events such as networking events, career counseling, and professional development training.
  • Students begin transitioning to their Post-Secondary Mentor.
  • Students and their Families attend the Graduation Celebration and Senior Send-Off Events.

College or Post Secondary

Summer Searchers have access to our national network of staff, alumni, board, and corporate partners for professional development opportunities and resources to support managing and taking charge of finances.


  • If in college/academic program - Students check-in with their mentor throughout the year.
  • They receive support/guidance with campus questions and financial aid needs.
  • Students have an opportunity to come back to support and advise younger Summer Searchers.
  • Students attend Post-Secondary events with other Students.
  • They begin to build a career plan for after graduation.

Alumni Network

We have a growing network of alumni who are leading their families and communities. The Alumni Network provides alumni with opportunities to advance their careers, support Summer Search through service and philanthropy, and stay connected with current students.


  • Alumni have the opportunity to come back to support/advise younger Summer Searchers.
  • Alumni attend alumni-focused events.
  • Stay connected with Summer Search participants and supporters for career development and job opportunities.
  • Stay connected with Summer Search participants and supporters for career development and job opportunities.
  • Alumni join the Summer Search Connect portal to join the conversation and network.
  • Alumni often donate/volunteer with Summer Search by joining Alumni Boards or Boards of Directors.