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I am active in an organization called Minds Matter DC (mindsmatterdc.org) that works to transform the lives of high-performing, low-income students and help them achieve their college dreams. Fueled entirely by the support of our donors and volunteers, we are breaking the cycle of “under-matching” by inspiring and empowering our students to get into top colleges that maximize their potential. We do this through our intensive 3-year program of mentorship, academic instruction, SAT prep, summer opportunities, and college application assistance.

I’m thrilled to share that our first graduating class have all been accepted to college and will be heading out this fall. We couldn’t be prouder of these extraordinary students – or more grateful to have played a part in preparing them for college admission and success.

One of our students, for example, earned a full ride scholarship to George Washington University. Meet Clau Diah in her TV debut when interviewed on Fox 5 Good Day DC about this prestigious scholarship only given to 10 DC students each year.

Having joined MMDC at its start three years ago, I’m proud of the progress that we have made as an organization and hope we can continue the momentum with our rising juniors and seniors as well as with our great group of new recruits.

In honor of our first cohort of graduates, we ask you to join us in supporting the next class of students aspiring for college. Merri and I have committed to match the first $2,500 raised. By making a gift now, your gift will have double the impact in supporting our MMDC students!

You can donate directly on our website by clicking here.

We hope you’ll join us in supporting another year of MMDC. Thank you for your consideration – and hats off to the Class of 2018!

If you have any other questions, want more information, or want to get involved as well, contact me directly at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or on my cell phone at 703-501-3495.

All the best,

Josh Stillman '06,
Admissions Team and Board Member, MMDC

P.S. If you are a podcast fan, I highly recommend Malcom Gladwell’s Carlos Doesn’t Remember. While a nonprofit based out of LA is featured, the mission resonates with the work we are doing at Minds Matter DC.

P.P.S. Here are a few great articles related to “under-matching” i.e. the problem that students from low income families are underrepresented at selective colleges.