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IU Health High School Fellowship with IPS Recognized as One of Ten Exemplars in Education  with Grant from Carnegie Corporation of New York 

A new philanthropic initiative supports local leaders collaborating across public and private sectors to create career pathways for young people, strengthen civic engagement, and reduce political polarization.

Today, Carnegie Corporation of New York announced the Indiana University Health (IU Health) High School Fellowship with Indianapolis Public Schools  (IPS) as one of 10 winners of a new initiative to support outstanding local partnerships that educate youth, bolster the workforce, and demonstrate the power of working together. 

Profiles in Collective Leadership provides $200,000 grants for nonpartisan collaborations that serve as education and economic bridges in a range of communities across the country. The philanthropic initiative draws on the strengths of local government, education, nonprofit  business, and healthcare professionals to create career opportunities for young people and encourage civic participation. The 10 recognized partnerships in 8 states will act as exemplars,  sharing what they have learned with each other and with the public. 

By funding these collaborations in urban, suburban, and rural areas, the Corporation seeks to reduce political polarization and support civic engagement, community cohesion, and trust in public institutions. The Corporation aims to help young people from all backgrounds move from the classroom to meaningful careers, spurring the socioeconomic mobility necessary to create a thriving economy and sustain a healthy democracy. 

The Corporation, in partnership with the education nonprofit Transcend, identified candidates through a competitive national process. The winners were selected by a panel of jurors comprised of a broad range of leaders in business, higher education, and philanthropy. 

The IU Health High School Fellowship is a partnership between IU Health, IPS, local higher education institutions, and community leaders to ensure students graduate with the skills needed to obtain healthcare jobs. The organizations developed a three-year health care focused high school curriculum that provides fellows with the opportunity to earn five industry-recognized certifications. Fellows participate in paid work-based learning experiences, including summer internships, and graduate with up to 20 dual credits from Ivy Tech Community College,  aligning with an associate degree in the health care specialist program. Graduates of the fellowship are guaranteed a job offer from IU Health and encouraged to continue postsecondary education.  

The fellowship addresses multiple community challenges. At any given time, IU Health has approximately 600 open positions at its downtown hospitals, and people of color, particularly the Black community, are underrepresented in nearly all healthcare occupations. IPS serves a socioeconomically diverse population with 70 percent of students at Crispus Attucks High  School qualifying for free and reduced lunch. Additionally, while the program is open to all students, all current participants are students of color.  

Seventy-six students are enrolled in the program across three cohorts; the first cohort of fellows will graduate in 2024, and 100 percent of them had a 3.00 GPA or higher in the 2022–23 school year. Eight fellows in the first graduating cohort are in the top ten of their high school class, and all students in the first and second cohorts earned work-based learning experiences.  

Aleesia Johnson, superintendent of IPS, believes the Profiles in Collective Leadership award is a clear endorsement that the success of the IU Health High School Fellowship may extend far beyond its immediate impact on IPS students. 

“Our partnership with IU Health has created a paradigm shift in educational collaboration and community engagement,” Johnson said. “Our program showcases the potential to serve as a blueprint for future initiatives nationwide. By demonstrating the tangible benefits of integrating  real-world experiences into high school curricula and fostering meaningful partnerships between  educational institutions, health care organizations, and community stakeholders, the fellowship  sets a precedent for innovation and inclusivity in education.” 

“The opportunity to walk upstream and engage young people in a way that not only introduces them to industry expectations but also builds on social and leadership development is a beneficial shift in workforce standards,” said Jamal Smith, director of government affairs and strategic partnerships for IU Health. “We are not only investing in the future and diversity of healthcare, we are also investing in the health and wellbeing of the communities where our team members live, work, and play. We see this program as an all-around win for the students,  patients, and the health care industry.” 

In addition to the $200,000 grant, winners will receive opportunities to document and share their story nationally and participate in a community of practice committed to highlighting and replicating these approaches and solutions. 

“We launched Profiles based on our belief that communities across the country are working to create opportunities for economic and social mobility as well as civic engagement irrespective of red, blue, or purple politics — and we want to listen and learn from them,” said LaVerne Evans  Srinivasan, vice president of the Corporation’s National Program and program director of  Education. “The IU Health High School Fellowship is a leading example of this type of  collaborative work on the local level, and our hope is that by spotlighting and funding their  efforts, we can ultimately influence the field to work in new and collective ways that also mitigate  the impact of polarization.”  

Learn more about the Profiles in Collective Leadership initiative at  

About Carnegie Corporation of New York

The Carnegie Corporation of New York was established by Andrew Carnegie in 1911 to promote the advancement and diffusion of knowledge and understanding. In keeping with this mandate, the Corporation’s work focuses on the issues that 

Carnegie considered of paramount importance: education, international peace, and a strong  democracy. As a leading philanthropic funder of nonprofit education programs, the Corporation  supports organizations working to ensure that all students are prepared with the knowledge,  skills, and motivation they need to fully participate in democracy and thrive in the global  economy. @CarnegieCorp 

This award was spearheaded by the IPS Foundation.