Since 1992, the National Black MBA Association has provided mentors who coach students on a consistent basis in college preparation, academic success, leadership, public speaking, social engagement, networking, and goal setting to develop discipline, set and achieve high academic standards, and implement ways to serve their communities.
- Over 8,000 minority high school students have been mentored through LOT
- LOT operates in more than 30 U.S. cities, Canada, and the United Kingdom
- More than 95% of LOT graduates enroll in college
- More than $2 million in scholarships and programming support has been provided by LOT and its partners.
Setting New Standards
The hallmark of LOT is its intensity. Working with their mentors, high school students are encouraged to tackle challenges most other students wouldn’t dare even approach, regardless of socio-economic circumstances, and overcome those challenges with a high degree of excellence. At the same time, LOT students learn how to be leaders— setting goals and high standards for themselves and their peers, and motivating others to follow their lead as they make a difference in their communities.
Creating New Habits
Too many students are not proficient in basic subject matter. Moreover, to be competitive in a globally interconnected marketplace, proficiency is not enough. Excellence is required. The Leaders of Tomorrow Program helps students change the way they approach achievement on an everyday basis so that striving for excellence becomes a habit.
Embracing New Opportunities
LOT helps young people learn both how to prepare to take advantage of and create opportunities. They are exposed to different ways of thinking, different cultures, diverse career fields, numerous colleges, and people who have achieved greatness. In the process, future leaders discover that whatever they want to accomplish in life is within their grasp, as long as they have the discipline, courage, assertiveness, and skill to make it happen..
Our approach involves synergies between nationally coordinated efforts and intense person-to-person interaction in more than 30 local chapters. Throughout the year, chapters deliver repetitive, habit-forming workshops and exercises in SAT/ACT preparation; study skills, advanced algebra, analytical development; oratorical development; leadership and management; critical reading, thinking and comprehension; career planning; and college preparation that culminate in three national capstone events involving all chapters: Success Boot Camp, the LOT National Business Case Competition, and Global Community Service Project.
Success Boot Camp
Success Boot Camp is the nation’s most intense “microinternship” experience for minority high school students. Working with trainers, facilitators, coaches, and mentors from every level of the corporate world and public policy arena, students summon the courage to tackle extreme high pressure situations. At the same time, they learn by doing— preparing for college by visiting college campuses, for their careers by engaging corporate recruiters and executives, and to seize leadership opportunities by collaborating to make their communities better now. Held in conjunction with the National Black MBA Association, Inc. National Convention and Exposition, the camp is a sun-up to late-night experience that focuses on academic excellence, professional development, college preparation, health and fitness, leadership, and service— from work-outs at dawn to interactive workshops to leadership elections to networking with major corporations. Students are pushed to do things that others have never challenged them to do before, like public speaking or networking with corporate CEOs or having dinner with national elected officials. They are required to solve the world’s problems and then defend their ideas. And in the process, they begin to realize that the limits to your potential are only those that they place there themselves.
National Business Case Competition
Through the LOT National Business Case Competition, high school students train for months to analyze an MBA-level Harvard-style graduate business case and pitch recommendations before panels of senior corporate executives and business school faculty who are instructed to evaluate candidates as if they were MBA candidates, not high school students. In the process, LOT students must master math application, critical thinking, analytical writing, research, and public speaking and then present detailed financial projections and implementation plans. One of the most intense experiences any high school student participates in, it is billed as the "toughest competition for high school students in the world." Case Competitions have been held at some of the leading business schools, including the University of Pennsylvania Wharton School of Business, University of Michigan Ross School of Business, and the Ohio State University Fisher School of Business, where students have analyzed complex business problems affecting major corporations like including major corporations like Samsung, Apple, Walmart, Facebook, Viacom, Nissan, and Starbucks.
Global Community Service Project
The Global Community Service Project challenges LOT students to organize a nation-wide effort to improve society. National student leaders engage local chapter leaders around a central theme, and students in cities around the country create, design, and execute original community service projects in their local area over the same period of time.
The National Executive Team
LOT students are expected to take an active role in shaping how their chapters impact the world. To spearhead that activity, students elect a national “C-Suite” Team similar to that in major corporations: a student president & chief executive officer, chief administrative officer, and chief operating officer. Each local chapter also elects a “chapter executive” who works with the national officers to develop and implement major projects.
Guerby Noel, 2007 University of Miami School of Law
Katera Shackelford, 2009 Founder, People of Color, Baker University
Morgan Brooks, 2008 National Park Service
Every morning, in my breaking waking moments, I pledge to live each second as a leader and breathe each breath with even more tenacity than the last until I fall, exhausted, into sleep each night. I will live each day with such drive and determination, with such foresight and focus, that the sun itself will look down on me and point and exclaim with pride to the other stars in the sky one simple word that describes me: Fearless.
The Founding-1991. Visionary MBAs and educators associated with the New York, Boston, and New Jersey chapters launched the Leaders of Tomorrow program at the National Black MBA Annual Conference and Exposition in St. Louis, with key initial financial and leadership investment from M&M Mars and Bentley University. In subsequent years, a design team, made up largely of NBMBAA members and educators from the Boston chapter, developed a unique series of workshops that confronted the fears and embraced the dreams that many young minority students experience when facing their future. Since that time, scores of mentors have worked with more than 8,000 minority high school students to help fulfill the program’s initial goal— to help young people at risk of underperforming to instead realize their full potential.
As the national conferences became more dynamic and inspiring, student attendees demanded year-round programming. More than 30 local chapters have stepped up to meet the needs, utilizing volunteer mentors who agreed to design curriculum and devote the personal time necessary to help young people master the skills and behavior needed for success.
College visits, professional development workshops, SAT prep courses, and a myriad of other activities designed to close the achievement gap for minority students, “led to the all-important light bulb moment when they realized that anything was possible for them,” according to Beverly Sanders, a former national headquarters staff member who helped guide the early Leaders of Tomorrow initiatives. In all, graduates from LOT programs across the country— more than 95% of whom enroll in college— have been the recipients of more than $2 million in scholarships and programming support.
LOT National Business Case Competition- 2002. Accenting the national conference and year-round local LOT programming are first-of-their-kind initiatives like the Leaders of Tomorrow National Business Case Competition. Founded in 2002 by the Washington, DC, Dallas, Atlanta, and Houston chapters, the annual competition challenges high school students with analyzing a graduate level Harvard-style business case.They are required to present recommendations and financial projections before an audience of hundreds and multiple panels of judges from the senior ranks of corporate America and academia. With key support from sponsors including ExxonMobil, and Nationwide, the competition has shown the world that ethnic students can demonstrate excellence at the highest levels, even if that means doing work in high school normally reserved for MBA candidates at schools like Harvard. In the process, they must master advanced math, critical thinking, analytical, writing, research, and public speaking skills.
Global Leadership Camp- 2005. Stand-out representatives from each chapter were chosen to further develop their leadership skills with an eye towards developing the competencies needed to lead in the globally connected environment of today. The programs have been held in London, Washington, DC and Walt Disney World in Orlando.
LOT Leaders of Tomorrow National Alumni Association- 2011. The most important outcome of the program, however, is the success of its alumni. In 2011, under the leadership of co-founder and first president Jazmin Tanner ‘09, the alumni formed a national alumni organization, Lambda Omicron Tau (LOT), with the goal of networking, and support for each other’s careers, bringing the mission of LOT full circle. The organization stays connected through a Facebook page, and soon plan to develop resources to share internship opportunities and build collegiate chapters.
Success Boot Camp- 2011. The National Conference was reimagined in 2011 to become a signature National Black MBA Association event and to stand out as elite among other camps and conferences for high school students. It designed to stand out as the nation’s most intense experience for minority high school students. Working with trainers, facilitators, coaches, and mentors from every level of the corporate world, academia, and the public policy arena, students summon the courage to tackle extreme high pressure situations. At the same time, they learn by doing— preparing for college by visiting campuses, for their careers by engaging corporate recruiters and executives, and to seize leadership opportunities by collaborating to make their communities better now. The camp is a sun-up to late-night experience that focuses on academic excellence, professional development, college preparation, health and fitness, leadership, globalism, and service— from work-outs at dawn to interactive workshops to leadership elections to networking with major corporations.
National Officers- 2011, and Chapter Executives-2012. LOT students elected national officers for the first time, the C-Suite Team, made up of an elected president and chief executive officer, chief operating officer, and chief administrative officer. The first national president and CEO was Kristen Brown ’12. A national “legislature” of LOT students, the Executive Committee, was formed in 2012. Each chapter appoints an Executive Officer, who joins the other executive officers from around the world, working with the C-Suite team to set national priorities for the students and implement them in their chapter.
Global Community Service Project- 2012. LOT students in each local chapter organize community service projects around a central international theme, agreed to by a majority vote of the chapters. In this way, LOT students become leaders of today, making a dramatic global impact collectively by showing leadership in their own communities. To date, students have led projects to provide resources for younger children and to supply basic toiletries for the homeless.
Today- 2014. Almost 300 mentors in LOT programs in over 30 chapters all over the world mentor more than 800 students— helping them set new standards for themselves in the areas critical to success: academic achievement, college preparation, professional and career development, leadership and management, networking, community engagement, public speaking, analytical and critical thinking, and goal setting– with a profound international impact.
Lambda Omicron Tau, the Leaders of Tomorrow National Alumni Association, was created by LOT alumni in 2011 to enhance their ability to network with one another and present ideas for the Leaders of Tomorrow Program based on their own experiences, both in the program and post-graduation. They stay connected through social media, and are developing plans for tracking career growth among alumni and engaging corporations and other organizations.
Alumni can join or contact the alumni association by emailing mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org.
We know that today, companies, governments, and non-profits need talent to help them solve critical challenges and seize new opportunities. Tomorrow, society’s ability to collectively solve the challenges that will confront us, from global warming to an aging population to space exploration, will require a special way of thinking— how to analyze problems; research markets; explore commercial, regulatory, and cultural environments; and craft creative plans that explain in-depth possible solutions and the financial ramifications of each. Most people only begin that approach in graduate school or late in their undergraduate education. However, through its Leaders of Tomorrow Mentoring Program, the National Black MBA Association develops MBA-level skills in high school students, many of whom are at-risk.
The core of our philosophy is that in order to achieve, students must be challenged to think critically, work harder than others, and make the life choices that will lead them down the path to success. Beyond skills and knowledge, we work to help them develop the daily habits, value system, and attitudes they must have to set high goals and overcome tough circumstances. We believe that we have developed one of the world’s most unique and effective models to lift minority youth past tough circumstances to achieve goals that not only put them on the path to success, but also ensure that we have the well-trained talent we will need to solve the global challenges that await us.
We look forward to discussing how we can work together to empower youth to change the world.
To partners, support, or sponsor the Leaders of Tomorrow Program, please contact:
National Black MBA Association
400 West Peachtree Street NW, Suite 203
Atlanta, GA 30308
Phone: (312) 580-8663