Mayo Clinic, NAACP’s Rochester Branch welcome inaugural RISE for Youth group

June 6, 2022

RISE for Youth is a collaboration between Mayo Clinic and the Rochester branch of the NAACP to help Black and underrepresented students prepare youth to enter the workforce.

Mayo Clinic and Rochester Branch of the NAACP welcomed 40 promising high school and college students to RISE for Youth on Monday, June 6. The program, which is in its inaugural year, is designed to help Black and underrepresented students find pathways to success in education and employment.

RISE for Youth provides participants with knowledge and experiences to remove barriers to equity in education and employment. It features a professionally designed curriculum, as well as mentorships and partnerships with area businesses.

“We’re incredibly excited about the program we’ve developed for our scholars,” says Anjali Bhagra, M.D., medical director for Mayo Clinic’s Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion. “We have created a pathway that will help remove barriers to equity that many of our participants face.”


  • Learn about a variety of topics, including public speaking, entrepreneurship and leadership skills.
  • Learn about job opportunities at Mayo Clinic.
  • Tour area businesses.

They are also matched with a mentor.

“This program is a step toward leveling the playing field for Black and underrepresented students,” says Wale Elegbede, Mayo Clinic Strategy Management Services, who is also president of the NAACP’s Rochester Branch. “We believe this kind of investment will have great returns in the lives of our scholars.”