Ten Pillars of Success

The overarching goal of the 10 Pillars of Success is that youth build character, social competency, leadership skills, and emotional intelligence, and that they graduate life-ready from high school, vocational school or college. Side by side with the long-term commitment of parents, students, and organizations, Operation Progress is able to ensure fundamental educational opportunities, safety, security, trust, support, continuity, and life learning.

The 10 Pillars of Success will provide OP participants the exposure and necessary tools to discover their passions and to meaningfully and productively develop their talents. These experiences allow underserved youth to become educated, capable, ethical and productive people who will in turn lead, mentor and contribute to society at large.

Program Goals

1. To build character, social competency, leadership skills and emotional intelligence enabling students to be well rounded adults.

2. To provide the youth with distinguished educational opportunitiesthat adequately prepares them for collegiate or technical education upon graduation from high school.

3. To incorporate LAPD mentorship in the youth’s journey which provides them with a sustainable role model, promotes safety and fosters a change of perception between law enforcement and the community.


The Academics Pillar

Through our Academics Pillar, students grow into knowledgeable and critical thinkers, develop and perfect effective study strategies, make academics a key priority, minimally achieve a 3.0 GPA through high school, then attend and graduate from college or technical school, career-ready. GPA requirement serves to not only instill high academic expectations, but develops student’s grit through hard work and commitment. Operation Progress offers a variety of programming including:



  • Tutoring Program
  • After-school Study Hall
  • Campus Immersions
  • College Tours
  • Summer School Scholarships

The Arts Pillar

Through our Art Pillar, Operation Progress offers art education which benefits youth in several developmental areas including motor skills, language development, decision-making, visual learning, inventiveness, cultural awareness, and academics. Art education also strengthens problem-solving and critical-thinking skills. Incorporating art education into the lives of our youth will result in positive academic, cognitive, personal, and social and civic outcomes. Our art programming includes:



  • Visual Arts
  • Keyboarding
  • Vocal Class
  • Percussion Lessons
  • Digital Arts Program



The Health and Wellness Pillar

Our Health and Wellness programming promotes healthy lifestyle choices, social development, confidence, skill building, accountability, and responsibility. Good health allows our youth to develop strong cognitive skills, positive attitudes, academic concentration, and better overall classroom and extracurricular performance behavior. Students learn to care for themselves by properly nourishing their minds, bodies, and souls. Our Health and Wellness programming includes:



  • Nutrition Course
  • Fitness Time! with Kaiser Permanente
  • Horseback Riding
  • After-School Sports

The Thriving Skills Pillar

Our youth are provided with tools to best cope with adversity in their home and personal lives. Our Thriving Skills Pillar helps to develop constructive interpersonal skills, autonomy, positive mental health, self-confidence, and satisfaction with social support. Scholars are able to handle challenging situations and learn how to deal positively with resulting reactions. We have a myriad of programming that includes:



  • Mindfulness Meditation
  • TLC’s I am Me program
  • Sisters for Success & Brothers United for Change youth groups
  • Reimagine
  • Social Skills Training Seminars



The Ethics Pillar

Our Ethics and Civic Engagement Pillar allows our students to develop critical thinking skills in order to make ethical life choices. Youth additionally learn social and personal responsibility, gain insight into rational and unselfish decisions, and understand the importance of civic engagement locally and nationally. Students additionally become aware of how their decisions affect their families, their community and their peers. Programming includes:



  • Ethics Speaker Series
  • Character and Etiquette courses
  • Letters to Congress Event
  • Voter Registration Assistance
  • Washington, D. C. Tour

The LAPD Mentoring Pillar

Our LAPD Mentors support youth academically and behaviorally, and empower and encourage them to reach their maximum potential. The mentors serve as additional role models, provide safety and security for mentees and their families, and build positive relationships between law enforcement and the Watts community.



The Long-term Commitment Pillar

Long-term commitment serves as the durable foundation that our 10 Pillars of Success rests on. Long-term commitment allows our scholars to work persistently toward their goals and maintain effort and interest over a long period of time despite failure, adversity, and plateaus in their progress and journey. Each student is required to sign an annual student commitment contract. Their commitment ensures that our scholars are engaging in behaviors that lead to success and long-term commitment.

The Parental Support Pillar

The Parental Involvement Pillar seeks to encourage parental involvement in many forms including good parenting in the home, the provision of a secure and stable environment, intellectual stimulation, parent-child discussion, social and educational values and high aspirations relating to personal fulfillment and good citizenship. Overall, we strive to create parents who are invested in their child’s future. Our Parental Involvement programming includes:



  • Required Parenting Course
  • Parenting Workshops



The Service Work Pillar

Service work allows our students to get involved with new things and develop technical, social, and academic skills that may not be learned in a classroom environment. Students gain a sense of empowerment and believe they can make a greater impact where they render service. Students learn the importance of giving back to their community and to society at large. Service work and projects include:



  • Hashtag Lunchbag
  • Community Service Days
  • WeDAY through We Schools
  • Kenya Service Trip

The Skills Training Pillar

Through our Skills Training pillar, our youth learn professional etiquette, accountability, responsibility, leadership, and communication skills in order to best “brand” themselves as they apply for college and seek employment. Students gain career readiness skills including the “soft skills” that employers look for in entry level workers, increasing their knowledge of specific occupational skills and workplace settings, establish a work history and connections with employers that can aid in future job searches, and develop an understanding of different occupations in order to make informed career choices. Our Skills Training programming includes:



  • Career Days
  • Career Workshops
  • Resume, Cover Letter and Interview Classes
  • Professional Summer Internships