The Black Star Project

Excellence in Education

You are here:

Motivational and School Enrichment Programs

The Black Star Project helps to motivate your students by helping them connect the work that they are doing in the classroom with their futures in college, careers, and in life.  Our guest speakers come from a variety of backgrounds, and they all have a different way of conveying the message that education is essential for future happiness and success.

Student Motivation Mentoring Program

The Black Star Project's Student Motivation and Mentoring Program, created in 1996, follows a classroom-mentoring program model that strives to:

  • Inspire and motivate students to do well in school

  • Expose students to various college and career options

  • Encourage students towards healthy and positive lives

  • Help students to create viable life plans and make good decisions

The Black Star Project manages one of the largest Student Motivation and Mentoring Programs in the United States. Since 1996, The Black Star Project's motivational speakers have mentored over 200,000 students in more than 220 Chicago public, private and parochial elementary and high schools. This program serves students of all ethnic, racial and faith backgrounds.

The Black Star Project's Student Motivation Program usually visits a member school four times per school year (every other month) with speakers addressing two or three classes of 6th- through 12th-grade students in groups of 20 to 35 students between 9:00am and 11:00am.  For high schools, motivators may be asked to begin at 8:30 am.  The motivators are from business, government, finance, education, construction, medicine, law, engineering, technology, communications and other professions.

Mentors talk to students about their jobs, the preparation necessary for their jobs, whether college or other training was required to take that job, and most importantly, what students need to do in school to prepare for a successful life in the world of work.  Additionally, mentors offer students advice on making good decisions about basic life choices.

Destination College Program

Destination College Workshops for 7th- through 12th-grade students are two-hour workshops that provide critical information to groups of 25 to 35 students on the process of college admission and financial aid.   Materials and copies of Destination College Journal are included.   Sessions include information on:

  • Making a college plan
  • Making your freshman/sophomore years of high school key to college admission
  • The junior year of high school: bringing it all together
  • The senior year of high school: gaining momentum for college
  • The compound magic of GPA , class rank and standardized test scores
  • High school clubs, activities, and service learning projects that impress colleges
  • Choosing a college
  • Understanding the financial aid process and getting financial aid
  • Preparing for the ACT and SAT
  • Understanding college social life
  • Connecting college to a career
  • Meshing the college experience with your family life

Graduation and Motivational Speaker's Bureau

The Black Star Project's dynamic speakers can motivate and inspire any group of young graduates!  We have a variety of practiced and engaging speakers ranging from entrepreneurs, activists, spoken word and hip hop artists, medical professionals, and even The Black Star Project's executive director, Phillip Jackson.

Real Men Read Program

The Black Star Project's Real Men Read program brings fathers and men to schools to read to K-3rd-grade students and to model the value of reading and learning.  Books are provided by one of three sources: The Black Star Project, Black men guest readers, and schools themselves.

"Shark Tank" Mock Interviews

A panel of successful business leaders will lead high school students through a mock interview, giving advice on how to ace the interview and get the job.

Academic and Attendance Encouragement Pep Rallies

The Black Star Project tutors and motivators will come to your school and motivate your children to succeed!  Rappers, spoken word artists, DJ's and our educational support staff will talk with your students about the importance of education, encourage students to do their best, give them practical test-day tips, and motivate them to succeed.

Black Male Achievement Mini Summit Program Summary

During this one-day three-hour Black Male Achievement Mini Summit, four of Chicago's most inspirational, dynamic and exceptional speakers on Excellence in Education will facilitate four modules with supporting participatory exercises that will transform the spirits, morals, value system, and mindsets of the young men that attend this program.  Students will leave the program as inspired independent thinkers ready to take their education and personal life to the next level.

Upon completion of the program participants will:

  • Develop core competencies that will empower them to be critical thinkers when making decisions about their education and life.
  • Acquire constructive skills to productively manage their time.
  • Learn to become financially literate and to take control of their everyday expenses through disciplined money management.
  • Understand the importance of their cultural history and how it relates to their future.



National News and Campaigns

Cities that participated in MLK Mentoring Day

Cities that participated in MLK Mentoring Day
Was your city listed as a participant in MLK Mentoring Day? Find out here:

Stay Connected and Informed

Search our website