Through a combination of mentoring and transformative experiences, Summer Search takes a holistic, long-term approach to supporting young people to thrive.

During the summer after sophomore and junior years of high school, our students receive scholarships to go on experiential education programs, ranging from wilderness expeditions, to academic programs, to international service trips. These experiences broaden students’ view of themselves and provide the opportunity to partner with their mentor to learn from their triumphs and setbacks. This reflective process allows Summer Searchers to strengthen the skills and mindsets needed to succeed in school, work, and in life.

Each summer, we send nearly 1,000 students to destinations all over the world, which means we need to book a lot of flights!

That’s why we’re so grateful to partner with United Airlines, who has committed $75,000 in roundtrip airline tickets to allow more than 90 Summer Search students to fly across the United States and Latin America to participate in those life-changing experiences.

In addition to sponsoring summer flights, United Airlines also made it possible for 21 Summer Search alumni to travel to San Francisco for our National Alumni Summit and Leadership Conference in November. This event brought together nearly 300 Summer Search alumni from across the country, which is the largest alumni gathering in our history! The conference allowed Summer Searchers to connect with one another as leaders, engage industry experts, and explore how to effect positive change in their personal and professional lives.

It was incredibly inspiring to see so many alumni make the journey, many of whom had to deal with extreme weather conditions in their travels, from snow storms on the east coast to smoke from the devastating California wildfires on the west coast.

As she was returning home, Philadelphia alumna Avere Scurry shared this reflection on how much she enjoyed and appreciated the opportunity to attend the Summit.

“[I] had a ball at the Summer Search Alumni Leadership Summit in Cali. It was great being reunited with the extended family right before Thanksgiving! Much to be thankful for this year, including Summer Search and United for making this trip happen. Looking forward to the next one.”

Nadiyah Young, a fellow Philly alumna, echoed Avere’s sentiment of gratitude in an exuberant Instagram post.

“This weekend’s Leadership Conference in San Francisco was amazing! Thank you Summer Search for a great weekend! The energy was phenomenal! Everyone looked beautiful! The info was very well needed! I left Cali feeling resilient and empowered! Thank you to United Airlines for sponsoring my travel to and from San Francisco!”

As our alumni have expressed, we are profoundly grateful to United Airlines for kicking off our partnership by helping us bring together our alumni leaders for a weekend of leadership, learning, and connecting. We’re already looking forward to this summer where United’s sponsorship will directly support our young people in their most critical years of this program and will shape them to be more resilient, experienced, and confident leaders in their own communities.