When Dr. Glenn Langer, Head of Cardiology at the UCLA Medical School, started volunteering at Lennox School District, he was astonished to find out that a number of students had not been out of that 1.3 square mile school district. The ocean is only a couple of miles away yet many students had never seen it.
In 1996, as Dr. Glenn Langer approached retirement, he and his wife decided to start a mentoring program for seven students from Lennox Middle School in the 7thgrade with his own funding. These seven economically disadvantaged students were provided with teacher/mentors who took the students on educational and cultural activities. By the time these seven scholars graduated from high school, the program had grown through the help of additional contributors and was located in several school districts in Northern and Southern California. When all of the original scholars completed the program and were accepted to a four year college, Dr. Langer decided that it was time to become a non-profit organization apart from the school districts.
In 2002, the Langer Scholarship Program became the Partnership Scholars Program, a non-profit organization. A board was established and more volunteers were added to help with the growing population of scholars and mentors. In 2007, when it became apparent that individual volunteers could no longer oversee the entire program effectively, the Board of Trustees hired their first full-time Executive Director, Patricia Zwagerman. With her extensive experience as an Executive Director for youth non-profits and as a teacher, she has helped the program continue to grow and establish the infrastructure necessary to prepare for additional sustainable growth.