Who is NAF?

Who is NAF? 2018-01-17T08:09:21+00:00

The National Academy Foundation (NAF) is a leader in the movement to prepare young people for college and career success. For nearly 30 years, NAF has refined a proven educational model which includes industry-focused curricula, work-based learning experiences, and business partner expertise from our four themes: Finance, Hospitality & Tourism, Information Technology, and Engineering. Employees of more than 2,500 companies volunteer in classrooms, act as mentors, engage NAF students in paid internships and serve on local Advisory Boards.

Founded in 1982 by Sanford I. Weill, Chairman Emeritus of Citigroup Inc., NAF fosters partnerships between the business and education communities to provide opportunities to underserved students. Weill’s original intent was to connect young people to entry-level jobs in New York City’s growing financial sector. His program did much more than that. His vision led to a national movement of preparing students for successful careers.

After Weill received approval for his new academy plan from the New York City Board of Education, the first academy, an Academy of Finance opened at John Dewey High School in Brooklyn, NY in 1982. Since then, NAF’s network has grown to 500 academies and serves more than 50,000 students across 41 states, D.C, and the U.S. Virgin Islands each year. NAF’s 90% graduation rate and network of dedicated educators, business partners, and students are testament to the effectiveness of this model.

The National Academy Foundation (NAF) has worked for a quarter century to raise the standard of academic and financial achievement among young people—especially among underperforming students. Each year, NAF serves over 50,000 students in approximately 500 NAF Career Academies in 41 states and the District of Columbia. We have long advocated for the value of work-based learning opportunities­­ that are essential to helping youth succeed as adults in the world of work and beyond.