Our Stories

Read about where change begins for our students, donors, alumni, program partners and Summer Search community. The names of the students in the following stories have been changed to protect their identity.

Summer Search New York City's 2009 Leadership Dinner: Bridges to Success
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Video

This inspirational video was first shown at Summer Search New York City’s 2009 Leadership Dinner. Watch Board member and alumnus Kweli, students Tatianna and Luis, referral partner M’Shell, and parent Norma share their Summer Search journeys…and then share it with a friend! more>

More Stories

Student

“Growing up, I wanted to be successful, to go to college, get a good job and be able to support a family but I was scared. I saw my family struggling and thought that if they were unable to make it how could I do it?”
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Read Summer Search Philadelphia junior Umar’s reflection letter describing the obstacles that were holding him back, and the changes he has seen in himself after his first year in the program. more>

Alumni

Summer Search alumnus Edward Yu
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This video shows some highlights from a year of Summer Search Alumni leadership, from a guest appearance on CNN, to a community service day in Los Angeles. more >

Alumni

Before Summer Search I did not like to talk about my personal problems to anyone, but soon found out that there was no need for that.
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A North San Francisco Bay student reflects on the stress of growing up fatherless and rootless until her first summer program trip. more >

Program Partner

Summer Search student Alfonso Taylor on his 2006 summer trip to Thailand with AFS
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AFS is an international, voluntary, non-governmental, non-profit organization that provides intercultural learning opportunities more >

Student

“Many Summer Search students have said that their wilderness trip changed their lives. I’ve heard it plenty of times but never truly understood what they meant, until I experienced it myself.”
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Read Summer Search Silicon Valley junior Czarina’s reflection letter describing the impact of her first summer program, a 21-day wilderness experience. more>

Referral Partner

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Evergreen High School counselor, Mary Jo Leonardson, is the recipient of the Second Annual Summer Search Where Change Begins Award to an Outstanding Educator. more >

Story Archives

North San Francisco Bay Student essay
A North San Francisco Bay student reflects on the stress of growing up fatherless and rootless until her first summer program trip.

American Field Studies, Program Partner
AFS is an international, voluntary, non-governmental, non-profit organization that provides intercultural learning opportunities to help people develop the knowledge, skills and understanding needed to create a more just and peaceful world.

Czarina's Reflection Letter, Silicon Valley '08
Read Summer Search Silicon Valley junior Czarina’s reflection letter describing the impact of her first summer program, a 21-day wilderness experience.

Seattle Referral Partner and Summer Search Award Recipient Mary Jo Leonardson
Evergreen High School counselor, Mary Jo Leonardson, is the recipient of the Second Annual Summer Search Where Change Begins Award to an Outstanding Educator.

New York City Alumnus Edward Yu, '05
“Summer Search has helped me and many other Summer Search students to become the solution of the future.”

San Francisco 2007 Leadership Luncheon
Thank you supporters of the 2007 San Francisco Leadership Luncheon. With your support, we raised over $660,000, the most we have ever raised at any Summer Search event!

Boston Alumnus O'Neil Anderson, '98
Exhibiting resilience despite many challenges, this alumnus has what it takes to be an altruistic leader

Boston Alumnus Maxwell Depaula Gives Back.
Maxwell Depaula ’02 - Graduating this year from The Juilliard School in New York City...

Boston Alumni Derrick Duplessey '98 Overcomes Adversity.
Being different is a way of life for Derrick. As a boy, he was teased, taunted, and even knocked around...

Blue Ridge Foundation New York supports start-up organizations that effect deep social change in New York City.
“Summer Search sets high expectations, values self-reflection, and focuses on results – for itself as an organization, but even more importantly, for the young people it serves.”

New York City Student Presents Her Poem At The NYC Spring Event.
Maria immigrated with her family from Lithuania to the South Bronx when she was ten years old...

“Papa Merin” and the Charles Hayden Foundation in New York City have a Huge Fan Club of Summer Search Alumni.
The Charles Hayden Foundation has been a significant multi-year supporter of Summer Search in both New York City and Boston...

North San Francisco Bay Thanks Alumna Melanie Rubio Merkner '01.
In the inaugural year (1999) of Summer Search North San Francisco Bay, Melanie Rubio Merkner entered the program as a referral by...

Summer Search Thanks Philadelphia Bodine High School Referral Partners George Chappell and Kate Reber.
Summer Search Philadelphia launched its very first interview season with outstanding success...

San Francisco Alumnus Cang Quach '98 Makes A Profound Impact.
Cang was born the youngest of six children in Vietnam. In hopes of prosperity for a struggling family business under communism, his parents...

San Francisco Alumnus Jae Eui Yi ’06 Says "Always be grateful for the tools that helped you on your climb."
Jae Eui Yi met Summer Search in 1995 when he was a junior at St. Mary’s High School in Berkeley. As an introvert, Jae was surprised that he felt so comfortable talking about his family in his interview with Founder Linda Mornell...

Seattle Student Writes Essay About Summer Trip With Williwaw Adventures.
“This was my chance to feel what it was like to surpass all doubts and to pass on what I have encountered to others like myself.”

Summer Search Opens San Jose Chapter: Silicon Valley
The Leadership Initiative is a joint venture between HP and the Silicon Valley Community Foundation aimed at helping executive directors learn to manage the complexities of a nonprofit organization...

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