Breakthrough Silicon Valley is getting a $200,000 grant from Bank of America

By Mary Gottschalk, San Jose Mercury News |  Dec 04, 2013

San Jose Mercury News

Breakthrough Silicon Valley has been named the recipient of the Bank of America Charitable Foundation's 2013 Neighborhood Builders award.

The award comes with a $200,000 unrestricted grant and leadership training.

Founded in 2002, Breakthrough Silicon Valley works in two areas.

The first is preparing academically motivated middle and high school students for college, offering a special summer school program between sixth and seventh grade. From there, enrolled students are kept on track with academic summer sessions, year-long programs in subjects such as math, field trips, counseling and support with college applications and placement.

An impressive 96 percent of students in the program enroll in four-year universities.

The second area works toward training and motivating bright high school and college students to become educators, including teaching internships. Some 78 percent of those in the Breakthrough program go on to pursue careers in education.

All Breakthrough programs are tuition-free.

"Breakthrough Silicon Valley is making incredible progress in changing the lives of high-potential, underserved students in our community," said Raquel Gonzalez of Bank of America.

Melissa Johns, executive director of Breakthrough Silicon Valley, said, "Breakthrough exists because students from low-income families can and should go to college, but statistics tell us that most will not without significant intervention.

"Bank of America's investment in our work will directly impact the number of students beating the odds every single day."

For more information on Breakthrough Silicon Valley, visit

This article originally appeared in San Jose Mercury News publication. Content was produced by outside parties not affiliated with Bank of America. Opinions or ideas expressed are not necessarily those of Bank of America, Merrill Lynch Wealth Management, U.S. Trust or Bank of America Merrill Lynch, nor do they reflect their views or endorsement. These materials are for informational purposes only. Bank of America, Merrill Lynch Wealth Management, U.S. Trust and Bank of America Merrill Lynch do not assume liability for any loss or damage resulting from anyone's reliance on the information provided.

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