The team at Close the Gap (CtG), spoke with the many  talented fellows and mentors about their experience with the Close the Gap Social Impact Fellowship program, as well as their support for the first generation, low income (FGLI) community.

In this spotlight series, we share with you their personal stories, passions and motivations.

Let’s Meet Jasmine

Jasmine is a senior in high school in Harbor City. She enjoys reading in her free time, and fantasy and romance are her favorite genres. She also loves helping people and providing support to those who need it. She is interested in law and wants to continue her passion throughout her journey through college.

What drew you to CtG?

Jasmine: I never had a form of mentorship growing up. My mom didn’t go to college or anything either. It was mostly just me figuring everything out on my own. When I saw Close the Gap, and saw how you get mentored by somebody in a professional field. I thought it was a good idea to learn more about professionalism and gain valuable resources. I also saw on the flyer that the fellowship included community engagement and helping your community which resonated with me. I really liked that because I love helping out my community. I have noticed disparities within my own community, and wanted to make an impact. I ended up applying and was accepted which was really cool for me. After learning more and experiencing the fellowship, I am really glad I applied in the first place!

How have you grown from the fellowship?

Jasmine: I loved it. It was really fun. I loved working with my mentor. He was really great. I still have connected with him on LinkedIn and he’s really cool. It was good to give me an idea of what a professional setting looks like and learn about many different topics. I think we learned about financial literacy and about college.

The fellowship gave me a chance to see what I want to do. When I was in the fellowship, I was 100% sure that I would go into business or computer science. Then after the fellowship, I ended up doing an internship at a law firm called Sidley Austin. It led me to realize that I would rather be a lawyer than do anything else. Right now, I am doing an internship at an aerospace company, which is funny because I am actually doing law work at an aerospace company. This is a great collision of two fields that I am interested in. I also do mock trial where I review mock trials and volunteer to supervise them.

Any advice for future fellows/mentors?

Jasmine: My advice is to do the assignments. They are actually really fun and when you look at them, don't miss any meetings with your mentors. They are more experienced than you and provide good advice. Also, try to get to know your mentors on a personal level because they can expand your knowledge and resources! My mentor taught me about emotional intelligence which was a topic that I never thought about bringing up.

Any post-grad plans?

Jasmine: Well, I am working on getting another internship hopefully in law. I was looking at a couple of listings within Congress. I am really excited to go to college and study public affairs/policy, which is very exciting for me! I also aim to go to law school after college.

About Close the Gap Foundation

Close the Gap Foundation is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization based in Sunnyvale, California. Founded with the vision to create an equitable future without opportunity gaps for low-income youths, Close the Gap Foundation works to empower first-gen, low-income students to build lifelong confidence and reach their fullest potential. Close the Gap Foundation Close the Gap Foundation's President and co-founder, Tai Tran, has been recognized as a Forbes 30 Under 30 and LinkedIn Top Voice.

Close the Gap Foundation's flagship program, the Social Impact Fellowship, is a three-month all-expenses-paid program that helps first-generation, low-income high school students find mentors, grow their confidence, and give back. Through structured mentorship and project-based learning, fellows work with mentors from renowned organizations such as Amazon, Apple, Google, Microsoft, and UCSF to tackle a self-directed social impact project to pitch to a panel of industry leaders.‌‌

To learn more about Close the Gap Foundation, visit:‌‌

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