Growing up in Mobile, Alabama, future LifeBrite Labs CEO Christian Fletcher and COO Amber Fletcher both had to overcome many barriers that came between them and the opportunities of higher education.
They had the grades and test scores to attend and earn scholarships to some of the nation’s top colleges and universities. However, coming from working class families in communities without mentors who could guide them on the path to higher education, they struggled to manage all the rest that such an education would require: travel expenses, living expenses, and navigating environments where the expectations and possibilities were very different from what they grew up knowing.
“People I went to school with,” says Christian Fletcher, “intellectually talented people, brighter than me, fell by the wayside because they didn’t have that support. Their lives took very different paths.”
Christian and Amber both managed to achieve a level of success, and they wanted to make it easier for the next generation of exceptional students growing up in communities like theirs.
“To uplift people and change the trajectories,” says Amber Fletcher, “education is key. We want people to be empowered and educated, then go out and compete for leadership positions.”
So the couple decided to create the Fletcher Fund for Equality and Education, which will invest deeply in students from underserved communities as they pursue opportunities in higher education. With an initial focus on their hometown, the fund will provide scholarships, mentors, and other critical support to each selected student, allowing them to attend the top colleges and universities their academic achievements deserve.
“Students in these circumstances need more than tuition,” says Amber Fletcher. ”Without additional support, they’ll have nothing left for bare necessities, no way to get home to see their families between semesters.”
The students supported by the Fletcher Fund will be those who have already shown they have the dedication and drive to succeed in higher education and beyond. They are already academically accomplished and have earned their places at some of the nation’s top colleges and universities. Only a lack of available resources from their families and communities threatens to hold them back.
“We fail them as a society when they do everything they’re supposed to,” says Christian Fletcher, “but then discriminate against them based on their socioeconomic status. That’s not fair. I would like the world to be a better place.”
The couple hopes to instill a sense of community responsibility in all the students they support, so that they reach back into their communities and help others as they have been helped.
“We want to catalyze a generational cycle,” says Christian Fletcher, “of education, wealth, and leadership that uplifts communities and motivates future generations.”
For more information about the Fletcher Fund or to apply for support, visit https://fletcherfund.com/