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Charting Careers Builds a Mentoring Community for Annapolis Youth

(L-R) Charting Careers participant, Armani, with her mentor, Dalonda

Local nonprofit, Charting Careers, has a bold vision to build a network of support around our youth and develop Annapolis as a city of mentors. At a time when many young people face systemic inequities and resulting opportunity gaps, supportive mentoring relationships and the connections and opportunities they bring can be life changing, said Erin Snell, PhD Executive Director of Charting Careers.

Founded in 2018 as a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, Charting Career’s mission is to break the cycle of poverty and inequity in Annapolis through goal-focused mentoring, college and career readiness, and family partnerships so that youth impacted by adversity can chart their own course to fulfilling lives and careers. Charting Careers currently serves more than  35 students and their families. They begin their program model with tutoring and mentoring of 3rd-5th grade students who are behind in reading, and then supporting and mentoring these same students and their families through middle school, high school, and beyond.

In 2019, Charting Careers created an Agency Endowment & Designated Fund with the Community Foundation of Anne Arundel County (CFAAC)  to further its sustainability so that its future looks as bright as the one they envision for the children they serve. “We decided to invest with CFAAC because they are a trusted entity in the community and provide important connections to other community members and potential donors,” said Snell. “CFAAC’s management of our Agency Fund endowment is very helpful. Each year we will be able to draw from our fund to give scholarships to our students. We appreciate the clear and helpful quarterly reports and responsiveness to any questions. Additionally, through our involvement with CFAAC, we have met other potential donors and learned more about individuals and organizations doing good work in our community.”

Since its beginnings, Charting Careers has mentored and partnered with youth and their families so that they can realize their own life goals – young people such as Armani, a recent Annapolis High School graduate and current college student. Armani was accepted to multiple colleges and universities and is the first in her family to attend college.

“Armani has been a participant with Charting Careers since its inception. In fact, she was part of the inspiration to found this nonprofit in the first place,” said Snell. “Armani set her sights on a career in the hospitality industry. She took many AP classes, worked multiple jobs, and graduated high school with honors. Charting Careers supported her along the way with mentoring, college advising, and scholarships. She is a true leader and continues to reimagine her life path. We are so proud of her.”

Acting on its commitment to promote equity and opportunity, Charting Careers also helped found and co-leads the newly-formed Collaborative of Nonprofits Serving Children and Youth in Annapolis aimed at systemic change through collective action.

Snell said that Charting Careers hopes to continue to serve more students and families in the future. “We are working to build and strengthen relationships and foster collaboration with the families and communities we serve, as well as with other nonprofits organizations and potential employers, for our students,” she said.


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