The Handshake America program identifies and recruits 6 scholar
athletes [male & female] in the fall of their junior year in high school
and pairs them with 3 volunteer coaches. These “teams” meet over the
next 12 months until the fall of the student’s senior year in 8 scheduled
workshop-type group discussions which focus on the 5 Handshake
practices: Perseverance, Passion, People, Positivity and Presence.
Students learn from their Handshake Coaches, peers and special guests
who provide different perspectives on what it takes to become
This program operates in 3 regions of the US including Western North
Carolina and has graduated 462 students awarding $512,000 in
scholarships to these students who have gone on to attend 115 colleges
in 24 states.