The Center for Talented Youth, which conducts the oldest and most extensive talent search and educational program for secondary school students with exceptionally high academic potential, is the first recipient of The Goldman Sachs Foundation's "Signature Initiative" grant.
The award was one of the first three in a series of significant grants to education organizations, each for $1 million, approved last month by the new foundation.
The Goldman Sachs Foundation was launched in 1999 with a first-of-its-kind contribution of $200 million from The Goldman Sachs Group Inc., concurrent with the group's initial public offering. John C. Whitehead, former co-chairman of Goldman Sachs and former deputy secretary of state, chairs the foundation's board.
The other two grants reflect the foundation's brand of "venture philanthropy," which will leverage its grants with contributions of professional services and volunteer time. They will go to the National Foundation for Teaching Entrepreneurship, a leader in youth development through its entrepreneurship training program, and the Indian School of Business in Hyderabad, India, a new world-class academic institution focused on developing business leaders for the future.
"These initial grants reflect the foundation's mission--to identify and promote innovation and excellence in education worldwide," said Stephanie Bell-Rose, president of the foundation. "Each of these high-caliber, achievement-oriented institutions applies extremely effective educational strategies that will flourish with the financial and human resources provided by the foundation."
The foundation intends to make grants on a quarterly basis. Additional grants in the year 2000 will promote excellence in public schools and other educational settings.
"We have a threefold mission: to enhance academic performance and prospects for life achievement of students at the secondary school level, to develop the abilities of promising high-potential youth worldwide and to support high-quality education for young people in business and entrepreneurship," Bell-Rose said.
"Our Signature Initiative aims to increase the number of high-potential youth who are well-prepared for the rigorous education and training required of today's global leaders," Bell-Rose said. "By combining sizable grants to effective organizations with strategic donations of volunteer mentoring and business expertise, the Signature Initiative aspires to deepen the pool of young people who attend selective colleges and universities, pursue demanding professions and become effective leaders."
CTY will use its newly awarded grant to recruit more children, and those who qualify will be designated Goldman Sachs Scholars. One hundred Goldman Sachs Scholars a year will attend CTY's academically challenging summer programs on college campuses and participate in weekend and distance education programs.
"We are honored to be recognized as an organization that exemplifies the spirit of the Signature Initiative," said Lea Ybarra, executive director of CTY.
"The foundation's grant and partnership will contribute enormously to our growth and [will] allow us to identify, guide and prepare greater numbers of gifted young people--especially those from underrepresented backgrounds--for excellence and achievement," Ybarra said.