Education is necessary for students to reach their full potential. In the united states access to education is inequitable. We want to tear down the barriers to education that inhibit millions from reaching their full potential.
Amir and Adam Mohiuddin Co-founded Partners Through Education (also referred to as Partners or PTE) in early January of 2016. Both motivated and upset by the rampant educational disparity of their community, as well as the increasing costs of secondary education throughout the country, together they set out to build an organization that would help solve them and find solutions to the problems millions of kids across the world face when trying to educate and better themselves.
Growing up we didn’t have much financially…. Although our parents instilled the importance of education in us but we had no idea how to afford it.Adam
Within its first year, PTE gained support throughout the local community and raised over a thousand dollars to support the education costs of underprivileged students. Inspired by their success, Amir and Adam sought to expand PTE and officially incorporated as a nonprofit. In late 2016 PTE opened its first branch in neighboring Agoura Hills High School. After investing time and energy in the new chapter, the brothers developed a thriving group of PTE volunteers and leaders at the Agoura Hills HS location. Today, PTE is proud that Agoura Hills High School stands as our second-largest branch in both membership and fundraising.
In 2017, Partners Through Education announced three scholarship winners of their “Transform” Scholarship. The “Transform” Scholars were chosen and awarded to underprivileged students pursuing success through higher education.
In August of that year, Amir also began preparing to accomplish his lifelong dream of attending an esteemed university. However, when confronted with the college application process, this eagerness quickly faded. Upon being introduced to the cumbersome application process by an after-school PowerPoint presentation, he became fundamentally unsatisfied with the considerable amount of misinformation and complexity when navigating interviews, letter of recommendation, standardized tests, essays, grades, financial aid, scholarships and a myriad of other needlessly complex college tasks in the application process. Nevertheless determined to reach his long-held goal, Amir set out to make sense of the various complexities in the admissions process. After consulting hundreds of peers and teachers, as well as dozens of college preparation books and admission officer interviews, he developed a strong understanding of the ins and outs of college admissions. Once finally finished submitting applications to several in-state schools, including USC and UCLA, Amir committed to UC Berkeley.
Shocked by the laborious and exclusionary nature of the college admissions process, Amir was inspired to turn PTE efforts to expanding access to college prep information. Having worked together on PTE’s prior successes Amir and Adam again teamed up, now with the assistance of student volunteers and school faculty members, to develop educational programs for pre-college students. These new educational programs were meticulously designed to simplify, streamline, communicate, and educate students, especially those in underserved and underrepresented communities, on how to successfully apply to college. Amir and Adam developed on-campus learning programs such as free standardized test tutoring, which offered peer to peer support for SAT/ACT test-takers, in addition to peer essay reviews and practice interview questions. Amir and Adam focused on providing their services to underserved students, who would not have otherwise had access to such materials. By allowing knowledgeable peers to lead classes, PTE was able to communicate and educate in a new and unique way.
Although PTE’s college prep classes were successful, the brothers encountered new problems as they broke down barriers to higher education. Most commonly they found that the complexity of college preparation required an individually tailored approach for each student. Furthermore, they found that assisting students was not as simple as providing accurate and up to date information.
We really found that mentoring students involved overcoming psychological barriers as much as providing free access to accurate information. The way information is communicated is as equally important as making it accessible.Amir
With these experiences, PTE began emphasizing the peer to peer support of its college prep program across all its chapters. Yet, Amir and Adam wanted to do more. Consequently, it was in late 2018 the brothers began working on a co-authored book “Breaking Through” to address the pursuit of higher education more comprehensively. They plan to release their work and go on a book tour in Fall of 2019.
Today Partners Through Education has over 500 active members across three dozen branches. PTE has been recognized by the likes of leaders such as President Barack Obama and President Donald Trump as well as influencers like Jaden Smith and Nick Jonas. Also, the backing of hundreds of individual donors and corporate sponsors has allowed Partners Through Education to grow into one of the largest student-run nonprofits in the country.