Impact at Scale: Matt Stephenson, Code2College


The Impact at Scale Series brought to you by Philanthropitch spotlights past nonprofit finalists from Philanthropitch and how they are scaling their impact and creating new opportunities for their organization.

Only 5 months have passed since Philanthropitch took the stage in Austin. Since then, our finalists have been hard at work expanding their impact and scaling the programs they pitched last May. We recently caught up with some of our Austin alumni - Matt Stephenson, Executive Director of Code2College - to hear how impactful the Philanthropitch experience has been for his organization.

Code2College is an education nonprofit focused on improving college persistence and completion of underserved students in STEM. Their mission is to increase the number of minority and low-income high school students who enter and excel in STEM undergraduate majors and careers.  

Learn how participating in Philanthropitch helped Code2College expand their impact in Austin.

1.    What were the biggest opportunities that came out of your Philanthropitch Austin experience?

After already securing $35,000 during Philanthropitch to double the number of students we serve to 250 and scale the number of intern placements by 5x to 50 total, it was so humbling to hear Lisa Graham announce that four out of the six judges (Kendra Scott of Kendra Scott Jewelry, Gay Gaddis of T3, Jag Bath of Favor, and Mellie Price of UT Dell Medical Center), as well as Amy Averett of Alamo Drafthouse, were requesting two interns each from Code2College for Summer 2019! Philanthropitch helped us increase our Summer 2019 internship commitments by 20% in one night! In addition, beyond the generous $10,000 grant that we received from Legacy Collective, Brandon Hatmaker (Legacy Collective Co-Founder) invited me to speak to his investors and other social impact influencers at the first-ever Legacy Collective Social Impact Summit this past July.

2.    How has Philanthropitch helped your organization scale?

As a result of raising growth capital through Philanthropitch, we have been able to hire a Program Manager who will manage student outcomes and scale from serving 120 at five schools (in three districts) to 250 total students at ten schools (in five districts). In addition, we project that with this additional support on the program side, we will secure the remaining 20 Summer 2019 internship commitments before the end of the calendar year.

3.    What is next for your organization in your effort to build a scalable, sustainable nonprofit?

We are both intentional and iterative with our programming, and so we are currently working to prove out a model in which a Program Manager can manage the outcomes of a cohort of 250 high school students and in which the top 20% of those students will convert to paid, summer internships. Given our earned revenue model, intern placement revenue should substantially mitigate program expenses and allow us to scale further with this 250:1 service ratio. By Fall 2019, we plan to serve at least 1,000 high school students throughout Central Texas with no plans to stop growing.


Save the date for Philanthropitch Austin 2019!

Block your calendar for May 7, 2019, at the LBJ Auditorium and start counting down the days until the 6th annual event is back!

We will be sharing information about the 2019 event, including details for submitting nonprofit applications, in early 2019. In the meantime, stay plugged into the Philanthropitch through Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Linkedin, YouTube, our newsletter, and right here in the Philanthropitch blog.