Minds Matter connects driven and determined students from low-income families with the people, preparation and possibilities to succeed in college, create their future and change the world.

About Minds Matter

Minds Matter is a comprehensive and highly successful three-year program that empowers young people from low-income families to achieve college readiness and success. The organization was founded in New York City in 1991 by six Wall Street professionals who understood that the gap in low-income student achievement is not one of intelligence, but resources. Minds Matter has developed a successful program incorporating tutoring, mentoring, and enrichment experiences that prepare students for bright futures.

Through an intensive and holistic mentoring and academic program, we provide a culture of excellence and rigorous performance standards for our students. We raise their expectations, broaden their dreams, and equip them with a toolkit for future success. Minds Matter achieves a 100% college acceptance rate for our students at quality institutions across the country. Being a graduate of Minds Matter is a mark of hard work, commitment, and achievement to potential colleges and employers.

Minds Matter by the Numbers

100% of students are accepted to 4-year universities and colleges


73% of students attend Barron’s Most, Highly, or Very Competitive schools


Return On Investment

Minds Matter is powered by its volunteers, and funded through their in-kind support, as well as the support of generous donors. We aim to make a difference students live and prepare them for college.

 Clive R. Belfield

Clive R. Belfield, Co-Director, Center for Benefit-Cost Studies in Education Teachers College, Columbia University, took a look at the economic value of the Minds Matter program. The benefits are mediated through higher rates of college enrollment and completion. Almost all Minds Matter students complete their degrees; these rates are far above the national average. This educational enhancement generates benefits in terms of higher incomes, improved health status and lower social burdens.

An Outstanding ROI

Dr. Belfield found that, compared to all low-income college-bound students, the benefits of Minds Matter are 6.8 times the cost. The social rate of return is 12%. Even when compared to all college-bounds students, who have significantly more resources and social capital, the benefits are 3.1 times greater than the cost and the social benefits are 8%.



Dr. Belfield also looked at the return of investment (ROI) to Minds Matter. at 17:1 – for every dollar of donor-invested funds, the induced economic impact is $17.

By any measure, this is an outstanding ROI, demonstrating that Minds Matter generates substantial net economic value for society by helping students enroll in college, and especially at selective colleges. Moreover, the ROI does not take into account the all-important essential mission of Minds Matter that is also being met: the intrinsic value of giving low-income students an opportunity to obtain a high quality education and all that it offers, and the value that this education brings to society through better health, lower crime, and lower welfare expenditures.

Minds Matter is nationwide. We currently serve students across 14 chapters.

Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, Denver, Detroit, Houston, Los Angeles, New York City, Philadelphia, Portland, San Francisco, Seattle, the Twin Cities, and Washington, D.C.