Reality Changers Inner-city Youth Receive Millions of Dollars in Scholarships!

Share Article

Reality Changers is celebrating their 12th Annual year-end event America's Finest on May 20th at the University of San Diego Jenny Craig Pavilion. Millions of dollars in scholarships will be presented to over 100 inner-city youth who have successfully completed the Reality Changers four-year program.

News Image

Reality Changers’ first generation college students

"Reality Changers is absolutely a model - not for the city, not for the state, but for the country." - U.S. Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan

After working with gang members for five years, Reality Changers Founder Christopher Yanov felt that it was just not right that most inner-city teenagers today know more people who have been shot or killed in the street than people who are on the road to college.

As a response, Reality Changers began in May 2001 with four 8th grade students at a Hispanic Presbyterian Church near downtown San Diego with the hope of building first generation college students. Starting with just $300 to its name, Reality Changers has given more scholarship awards to college-bound students than any other single organization in San Diego County since 2006.

On May 20th millions of dollars in scholarships will be presented to over 100 Reality Changers students who successfully completed the program. On this day, 5 Reality Changers students will receive the prestigious Gates Millennium Scholarship that grants them a full ride to any college of their choice for their bachelors, masters AND PhD program.

"On average, only 20 students per state win the Gates Millennium Scholarship, so having 5 Reality Changers students win this award in 2012 just goes to show what happens when we dedicate resources to inner-city youth in San Diego. By guaranteeing funding up to a PhD, these scholarships can be worth more than $500,000 apiece....I wonder how many more such students we can produce together next year?", states Christopher Yanov, Founder & President of Reality Changers.

Reality Changers' mission is to provide inner-city youth from disadvantaged backgrounds with the resources to become first generation college students by supplying academic support, financial assistance, and leadership training. America’s Finest – Reality Changers’ 12th Annual signature year-end event is a celebration for the 100+ students graduating from the 4-year program on Sunday, May 20, 3pm at the University of San Diego’s Jenny Craig Pavilion, 5998 Alcala Park, San Diego, CA 92110.

To learn more about Reality Changers, please visit their website at or contact Marshela Salgado, Vice-President of Communications via phone at (619)516-2219. For event updates follow Reality Changers on

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

JoAnn Fields
Reality Changers
619.884.9886 619.516.2222
Email >

JoAnn Fields
Reality Changers
619.788-7562 619-516-2219
Email >
Follow us on
Visit website