iJAG is often called "Iowa’s best kept secret". Others say it is a program that is desperately needed in all schools. iJAG students frequently call the program “a miracle”. With your support, iJAG will be called the best thing ever to happen to Iowa and Illinois students.
iJAG is an independent, statewide 501(c)(3) private nonprofit corporation established in 1999 and has become a leader within the national JAG network. Initially created for high school seniors as a school-to-work program, iJAG has evolved into an organization serving more than 2,000 students per year in 45 programs (33 schools), reaching into 17 communities across the state of Iowa and Illinois.
In its 16+ year history, iJAG has mentored over 11,000 students who were at the highest risk of disengaging from school or dropping out of school without the skills and motivation needed to succeed in higher education and the workforce.
And 16+ years of results tell the story:
- 94 percent of the iJAG students graduate
- Nearly 60 percent of our grads are the first generation to attend any kind of post-secondary education.
- 24 percent are the first generation in their family to graduate high school.
- iJAG students’ grade point averages increase .3 annually.
- iJAG students’ school attendance increases an average of seven days per school year over the past 16 years.
Through iJAG programs, middle school through college age students discover their individual talents, develop skills, and seize opportunities to achieve their personal potential. Each iJAG program is operated as a "for-credit" elective course during the regular school day. The iJAG specialist serves as adjunct faculty within our partnering school districts. The specialist continues to work with students into the summer in areas of leadership, employment and, in some cases, academic support. Critical to the success of the iJAG program is the relationship established between the student and the iJAG specialist. Each specialist works with a total of 35-45 students in a small learning environment and plays a unique role of teacher, advocate, guidance counselor and mentor. After finishing high school, students receive one year of follow-up supports from their education specialist.
iJAG offers a venue for students to interact with employers and community-based organizations. The iJAG program teaches 37 core competencies comprised of six skill sets: personal skills, leadership skills, communication skills, job attainment skills, job success skills and career development skills. iJAG has proven to be a cost effective and successful program by increasing:
- Graduation Rates
- Academic Performance
- Job Placement
- Continued Education/Training
iJAG is successfully preparing Iowa’s young people to be responsible and productive employees, customers and citizens.