The Go-to-High-School, Go-to-College program, established in 1922, concentrates on the importance of completing secondary and collegiate education as a road to advancement. Statistics prove the value of this extra impetus in making the difference in the success of young African-American men, given that school completion is the single best predictor of future economic success.

About the Program

Through the Go-to-High-School, Go-to-College educational initiative, young men receive information and learn strategies that facilitate success. Alpha men provide youth participants with excellent role models to emulate.

Original documents show that Gamma Lambda was intensely working on the “Go-to-High School – Go-to-College” program “for the betterment of colored folk” in the community every year since its 1919 founding year. During 1926, Gamma Lambda initiated the program in conjunction with the Detroit Urban League. Local “Negro” children were encouraged to participate. Parents were invited to attend these mass meetings.

The first scholarship in the amount of $250 was presented to a local high school graduate in the front room of the Alpha House in 1949. Since that time, the Gamma Lambda Chapter has continued to support this mission. Over $500,000 in college scholarships has been awarded to deserving young men through the Gamma Lambda Education Foundation.

Gamma Lambda Education Foundation

In 1980 the Board of Directors of the Gamma Lambda Chapter charged the scholarship committee with the responsibility of raising funds for and rewarding a scholarship to a high school graduate. In June 1981, in an effort to increase its scholarship fund-raising efforts, the Gamma Lambda Chapter authorized the establishment of a Michigan non-profit corporation. The organization applied for and was granted Federal tax-exempt status on April 27, 1982. This was the inception of the Alpha Phi Alpha, Inc. Gamma Lambda Education Foundation.

Since 1981, the Gamma Lambda Education Foundation has awarded 478 scholarships totaling $488,000. During the 2020 fraternal year, the Foundation awarded 33 scholarships totaling $43,000. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the annual scholarship banquet was held virtually. The guest speakers were award-winning actor and accomplished author Bro. Hill Harper and Bro. Antoine Garibaldi, president, University of Detroit Mercy.

Gamma Lambda Education Foundation  →

Alpha Esquires MENtorship Program

The Brothers of the Gamma Lambda Chapter felt both a need and a duty to reach out into the community at large to reclaim and reconnect with our young African American males. With this task in mind, the Alpha Esquire MENtor Program, Metro Detroit (originally called the Alpha Teens) was founded in September of 2007.

The Alpha Esquire program is committed to reaching out into the City of Detroit and its surrounding communities to provide young African American males in grades eight through twelve with positive male role models. Furthermore, the program provides our young African American males with the foundational tools and appropriate skills sets necessary to be successful in today’s local, world and global economies. Through our Esquire Lectures Series, Community Service Projects, Fellowship Meetings, Alpha Esquire Social Events, we demonstrate as proud men of Alpha the pillars of our great Fraternity: Scholarship, Manly Deeds, Respect for Womanhood and Service to All of Mankind. It is our sworn mission and duty to train these young men to be our next generation of educated, socially concerned, respectful and loving Men, Husbands, Fathers, Professionals and Leaders.

The Alpha Esquires are proud to have seventy-eight alumni currently enrolled in twenty-eight colleges and universities. Fifteen Alpha Esquire alumni are Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. members.

Alpha Esquire MENtorship Program  →

In addition to these signature programs, the Detroit Alphas also support the “Go-to-High-School, Go-to-College” program in the following ways:

  • Donation of tailored business suits, dress shirts and neckties to six college bound young men
  • Partnership with Ernest J. Dossin Elementary-Middle School, where Bro. Kurtis Brown serves as principal
  • Partnership with Ralph W. Emerson Elementary-Middle School, where Bro. Alonzo F. Terry, Jr. serves as principal
  • Bro. Alburn H. Elvin, Jr., Esq. and Bro. Andre Ebron served as panelists for Passport 2 Manhood: Academic Success, Leadership & Service, hosted by Boys and Girls Club of Southeast Michigan
  • Hosted a virtual roundtable between the Gamma Lambda Chapter and the Alpha Esquires to discuss the Black Lives Matter Movement, police brutality, and engaging the police