Kindergarten-to-Career Impact

“What do you want to be when you grow up?” Ask a kindergartner and you might hear doctor, teacher, football player or YouTube star. Those students may change their minds a hundred times before they graduate, or they might follow that dream every step of the way.

Say Yes Guilford exists to support those dreams, removing obstacles that stand in the way and providing support to lift up students. In collaboration with dozens of community partners, Say Yes is impacting students in elementary, middle, high school and college, and positioning graduates to succeed in their chosen careers.

Elementary School Impact

Helping Early Literacy with Practice Strategies (HELPS)

In 2019-20 Say Yes Guilford launched a pilot HELPS tutoring program in GCS schools and after- school programs. Helping Early Learners with Practice Strategies (HELPS) is an evidenced based program designed to improve student’s reading fluency, a key factor in increasing the percentage of students who meet proficiency standards as “College and Career Ready” by the end of 3rd grade. 


of Participants Saw Growth


Exceeded Expected Growth

Holiday Book Drive

Say Yes Guilford delivered more than 3,500 books to partner elementary schools and community-based learning sites in fall 2019.  The Holiday Book Drive impacted students in more than 80 classrooms.

Books Donated

Local Classrooms Impacted

Virtual Tutoring Program

In the fall of 2020, Say Yes Guilford began a Virtual Tutoring Program to prevent further learning loss due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Federal Work-Study Students trained in HELPS worked with 30 2-5th grade students for 15-minute tutoring sessions three times a week.

More than 100 community volunteers stepped up to help 70 students from 20 elementary schools improve their skills in math, science, social studies and homework.

Middle School Impact

Virtual Tutoring Program

The Virtual Tutoring Program, designed to help prevent learning loss during the COVID-19 pandemic, also helped middle schoolers beginning in fall 2020.

Partnered with A+ Test Prep and Tutoring to provide two hours of tutoring to 85 6-8th graders from 15 middle schools weekly. Tutors provided breakout sessions for individual help.

High School Impact

Say Yes Scholarships

Say Yes Guilford’s scholarship department conducts more than 150 postsecondary access workshops, presentations, and community events every year.

More than 2500 families attended in-person events in the 2019-20 school year.

Events Include:

college exploration, college application assistance, FAFSA completion information, financial aid assistance and Say Yes Guilford Scholarship Registration information

Partners Include:

Guilford Parent Academy, Communities in Schools, College Foundation of North Carolina (CFNC), and all GCS high school counselors.

FAFSA Completion Assistance

FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) completion assistance is a hallmark of Say Yes support.


Since 2015, GCS FAFSA completion rate is up almost 10%


FAFSA completion rates directly correlate to college enrollment

Free SAT/ACT Prep Classes

More than 100 GCS students attended Say Yes free college exam prep classes in 2019-20

Free College Prep Webinars

In response to the events cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Say Yes offered free webinars for GCS students preparing for college.

8 live, interactive webinars between March and June 2020.

Topics Covered:

cash for college, test prep, maximizing summer experiences, understanding financial aid packages, scholar Q&A.

Service Learning Opportunities

Say Yes partners with GCS to offer service-learning opportunities for high school students.

35 students earned service learning hours through virtually tutoring in fall 2020.

College Impact

Say Yes Scholarships

Say Yes Guilford Scholarships support graduates from every GCS high school.

Say Yes Scholars are Beating National Averages


75% of scholars continued their college education in the 2019-2020 school year compared to a national average of 73%.

Say Yes Scholars are graduating at a higher rate than the national average.


68.1% four-year graduation rate compared to the national average of 41%

Bachelor’s Degrees

Associate’s Degrees

Say Yes Scholarships Have a Big Local Impact

2,100 GCS graduates have benefitted from SYG scholarships since 2016.

Making significant investments in the futures of gcs students


Cumulative scholarship award since 2016

$10.3 Million

provided by Say Yes tuition assistance

$18.2 Million

provided by private schools partners

Federal Work Study Partnership

Say Yes created and maintained a Federal Work Study Partnership with GTCC, NC A&T and Greensboro.

30 students were trained in HELPS to work with GCS elementary students

Supporting Students Adjusting to College

Free workshops and  webinars to support students adjusting to college and preparing for their career.

10 events reaching more than 100 students in 2019-20.

Career Impact

Work-life Earnings

Say Yes Guilford is committed to helping students move toward better educational outcomes and increased social mobility. Our work is supporting positive systems change to prepare the next generation of leaders and an educated workforce for Guilford County and beyond.


total Work-Life Earnings created by SYG Scholars

187 Bachelor’s Degrees are equivalent to $448,800,000 in Work-Life Earnings

24 Associate's Degrees are equivalent to $43,200,000 in Work-Life Earnings

Madison Powers

“Write your goals down, so you see them every day. If you want to do something, do it.”

Madison Powers,
Greensboro College Class of 2020


“I want them to be free to do the things they want to do, and not be hindered by any circumstances.”

Lisa Bond,
Say Yes Guilford Scholar Mom