California teens living in poverty are 25% less likely to graduate from high school than their middle-income peers. An abysmal 46% of California’s foster care system students do not make it through graduation.  Sandi Jackson and Susan Samueli from the board of directors of Orangewood Foundation decided to do something about it and created the Samueli Academy in the heart of urban Orange County to help students graduate and break the cycle of generational poverty and abuse.

Tuition-free and open to all, the academy focuses on core competencies such as work-based learning, college readiness, state-of-the-art technology, project-based learning, and after-school programs. Since its initial freshman class in 2013, the school has expanded each year. It now serves grades 7-12 and ranks among the top 5% of high schools in California and the United States, boasting an astonishing 100% graduation and 83% college acceptance rates!

PLANNET has helped take the Samueli Academy from concept to reality, working with architect LPA on the academic buildings and Lennar (WHA architect) on Samueli Academy’s residential village for foster youth who need a stable living environment to support their academic endeavors. The campus provides a modern, state-of-the-art campus with interactive classrooms, labs, a college/career resource center, a performing arts theatre, and much more.

Click here to learn more about the Samueli Academy and see how PLANNET’s services helped spearhead the school’s technology efforts that is helping so many young people change their lives and pursue their academic dreams.