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Futures and Options

Program Description

Futures and Options empowers New York City's underserved youth to explore careers through career development and paid, mentored internships. We reach out to teens at a formative time of their lives, guiding them to further their education and become contributing citizens.

Our model program enables New York's underserved youth to gain much-needed access to the economic mainstream, work-readiness training and support from caring adults. At the same time, private and nonprofit businesses are connected to a pipeline of promising, motivated and diverse young people.

Success Stories

Justin has been with Futures and Options for several years. In 2012, he completed the Career Essentials work-readiness program, and went on to intern with The Blackstone Group in 2013.

In his years at Futures and Options, Justin, a rising senior, has added work experience and skills to his resume. He has also become a positive role model for his fellow students, demonstrating a commitment to making his professional and academic pursuits as meaningful as possible. He is currently an intern with Mesmerize Marketing, and has been hired to continue for the summer with added responsibility.

Justin said, in regards to his experiences with Futures and Options, "Futures and Options is important because without the learning experiences, the relationships and connections I made, I don't know where I would be in regards to becoming an adult and learning how to conduct myself in the work world."

Best Practices Library

Futures and Options is unique because youth career development is our primary focus. We dedicate one hundred percent of our resources to achieving excellence in this area.

Through career readiness, exploration, paid internships and college guidance, Futures and Options seeks to help a specific population: Underserved youth in middle and high school. Our clear programmatic focus makes for efficient, highly effective program management. Our program model providing one-on-one support and attention for both students and business partners. We have an intensive organizational focus on preparing underserved youth for careers and guiding them to further their education. Our programs encourage flexibility to adapt our approach according to the unique needs of each student and company. While offering paid internships we allow our students to earn money they need while they gain a sense of responsibility.

Services Provided

  • Career exploration and counseling/internships
  • College admissions guidance and counseling
  • College fairs/campus visits
  • College transition and retention support
  • Community service/service hours
  • Financial aid advising/FAFSA completion
  • Leadership development
  • Mentoring
  • Other


Race & Ethnicity

  • White: 3%
  • Asian or Pacific Islander: 11%
  • Hispanic/Latino: 27%
  • Other: 8%
  • African American: 51%

Education Level and
Number of Students

  • High School: 509
  • Middle School: 0
  • Elementary School: 0
  • Post-secondary: 0
  • Non-traditional: 0

Populations Served

  • Academically At-risk
  • Academically High-performing
  • ESL Students
  • Undocumented Students (3)


  • Between 50% and 75%

Matriculation & Completion

  • 4-yr College Matriculation: 96%
  • 4-yr College Graduation: 65%