The Alexander Hamilton Friends Association Programs
The Hamilton Leaders Academy is a no student cost program that helps students get into college, transition to college, succeed while in college and transition to the post college world. Currently the program is two years in length. Each year of the program includes an “academic-year” of curriculum, running from September to April, along with a week-long, summer leadership camp we call “Leader Week.” The academic year consists of individual support through email and phone calls and group support through conference calls. Each “Leader Week” takes place in a different location. The first year takes place in Seattle, the second year concludes with an international service experience.
First Year Hamilton Leaders Academy
Our first year begins with conference calls hosted by college admissions professionals and discusses the college search, the college essay and the college application. We also provide each student with individual peer and adult mentorship to help them through the college admissions and transition process.In addition to assistance with college entrance, our first year curriculum focuses on helping students to identify their core values and teaches them how to use those values to create personal vision and mission statements that will guide them as they make tough choices about college and career.The first year ends with a week of leadership training in Seattle where we work intensively with students to prepare them for the transition to college and to design a plan that will help them explore their opportunities and achieve their goals. With the skills learned at the Leader Week, students begin their first year of college with an idea of where they want to go and what they need to do to get there.
Second Year Hamilton Leaders Academy
The second year of the program begins during the students’ first year of college. In this academic year, we focus more on technical skills such as financial literacy, day planning and time management. We believe that effective time management and debt avoidance are essential to the success of college students. The Second year ends with an international volunteer experience in Guatemala. This experience is meant to expand students’ worldview and to expose them to a global perspective. The days are spent volunteering and learning about Guatemalan Culture and the evenings are spent reflecting on their experience and how it will improve their leadership skills. During the trip our curriculum also returns to our program mainstay—vision and goal setting. Students are given guidance as they look back at the goals they set for themselves in Seattle and discuss with one another what changed and what they have learned over the past year. Lastly, they have time to set new goals for themselves, goals that align with their new priorities.
This program sends students to New York between their freshman and sophomore years in college. These paid internships are meant to give the students some general work experience that will both help them gain real-world skills and give them the opportunity to explore their professional interests more fully.In addition to providing the students with internship placement and housing, Hamilton Friends also organizes supplemental internship workshops to help the students process what they were learning at their placement. These workshops are interactive discussions meant to teach students how they can use their internship to develop their organizational and leadership skills.
Recent Successes and Current Challenges
The purpose of the Hamilton Award is to recognize high school students for their academic, personal, service and entrepreneurial achievements and to select students for the Hamilton Leaders Academy. Since 2004 we have been working to preserve his legacy by investing in the higher education attainment and leadership development of our country’s brightest youth.
Prospective Third and Fourth Year Hamilton Leaders Academy
It is our intent to add a third and fourth year program as soon as we are able. Year three will focus on financial literacy training, goal realization, resume preparation, workplace skills and navigating various organizational cultures. The fourth year will focus on college end issues such as resume prep, grad school selection, future studies and career exploration. The third and fourth years of the program have not yet been fully developed; however, Hamilton Friends will tailor these years to meet the needs of the students during their sophomore and junior years of college.Internship
In the future we also want to offer our students more interest-focused internships in their later years of college so that they have the opportunity to get experience in their specific field of interest.