Ready To Succeed is Ready to Take the Next Leap

By Giving List Staff   |   November 18, 2022
Ready to Succeed Scholars walk in front of the Downtown L.A. skyline. Thanks to the holistic career support these foster youth and first-gen students have received, they are ready to start great jobs and take on the city!

Ready To Succeed, which has set countless youth exiting the turbulence of foster care on their paths to career stability and success, isn’t resting on its laurels or planning to slow down anytime soon.

The brainchild of co-founders Romi Lassally and Patrick McCabe, the L.A.-based nonprofit started in 2016. That year, Lassally and McCabe helped six college-aged foster youth become career ready, by opening up their professional networks, providing one-on-one career coaching, and placing the students – Scholars – in internships.

Ready to Succeed graduation celebration, Wednesday, June 15, 2022, in Los Angeles, CA. (Jeff Lewis)

“In the early days, when it was just Romi and me,” McCabe says. “We’d personally arrange internship opportunities for our students and even drive them to their interviews. If a student needed professional clothing, faced an emergency, or just needed a listening ear, we were always available to help.”

Through the nonprofit’s explosive growth, Lassally says that this kind of help is a hallmark of  RTS’s mission.  

“We’ve operated on the idea that foster youth need someone in their corner who coaches and encourages them to get to where they want to go,” she says. “It’s what we do for our own children and that’s exactly what we do at Ready To Succeed.” 

Over the last six years, the organization has formalized its high-touch, personalized career accelerator program by providing one-to-one personal coaching, networking, mental health and wellness, internships, and financial support to all its Scholars. Key partners like Sony, DreamWorks, Johnson & Johnson, and LA Tech play an instrumental role in helping RTS Scholars throughout through internships, jobs, and career advice.

As a result, the organization has seen their Scholars achieve extraordinary results. More than 90% have graduated college and secured career-track jobs, beating the odds stacked against most foster youth who too often struggle and fail to complete a four-year degree.

In 2022, the nonprofit expanded its reach to include low-income first-generation college students.

This expansion came when Kayne Scholars, a scholarship program for low-income first-generation college students, saw RTS’s success. They asked RTS to offer the same career accelerator programming to their students.

“We couldn’t say no,” Lassally says. “Our expansion is all about helping under-resourced youth reach their full potential. We know that foster youth and first-gen college students are capable of so much, and we are excited to work with both extraordinary populations to help them achieve their dreams.”  

Alex M. is case in point. After he started college, Alex quickly lost motivation in his mechanical engineering classes, when his true passion was entertainment. His grades plummeted. 

“I didn’t have the want or desire to finish my degree,” Alex says. “I honestly thought about dropping out, but the last year with RTS has been a game changer. Growing up, I didn’t really have much, but I’ve been able to benefit from all that RTS offers. Truly the work that RTS does here is life changing.”


Ready to Succeed

Donate now!
(424) 453-2445
Director of Development: Frances Hardy


RTS empowers youth impacted by foster care to graduate college, launch successful careers, and reach their full potential.

Begin to Build a Relationship

We know you care about where your money goes and how it is used. Connect with this organization’s leadership in order to begin to build this important relationship. Your email will be sent directly to this organization’s Director of Development and/or Executive Director.

Being a Ready to Succeed scholar is a pivotal opportunity for foster youth. It truly is life changing.
Jarl Mohn
President Emeritus of NPR, RTS Supporter, and Former Foster Youth

Your Generosity Allows Students to Focus on Building their Careers

Even with college scholarships, research shows that underserved students are on average $5,000 short of being able to meet their basic needs including food, rent, and school supplies. To bridge this gap, Ready to Succeed (RTS) is starting a basic needs scholarship.

“Students often have to take on two and three jobs just to make ends meet, often preventing them from graduating college and launching a career,” says Romi Lassally, co-executive director and co-founder of RTS. “We want to give them the opportunity to think about their future, not just survive.”

When you donate today, your generosity can allow students to pay for their basic needs, propelling them one step closer to a successful career and a bright future.

$100 – Pays for one week of basic needs support

$500 – Pays for one month of basic needs support

$1,250 – Pays for three months of basic needs support

$5,000 – Pays for an entire year of basic needs support – most impactful level of support!

Key Supporters

Ric and Suzanne Kayne Foundation
ECMC Foundation
Chuck Lorre Foundation
Edward A & Ai O Shay
Family Foundation
LA County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl
LA County Supervisor
Holly Mitchell
Angell Foundation
Anthony & Jeanne Pritzker
Family Foundation
Aramont Charitable Foundation
Ralph M Parsons Foundation
Herbert R. and Jeanne C.
Mayer Foundation
Sam Simon Charitable
Dwight Stuart Youth Fund
Mohn Family Foundation
Department of Education
and Congressman Ted Lieu
Wurwand Foundation
The SAM Initiative