Scott Lehman

Country representing

United States

Languages

English

Education

  • University of Southern Cal; Wharton School of Business
  • BS, MBA
  • United States Marine Corps (Special Operations Recon)

Current organisation

Citigroup

Current role

Investment Banking Vice President

Skills and Expertise

Community management
Finance
Politics
Social work
Sports

Areas of interest

Business
Education
Environment
Health
Human Rights

Website & Social Links

I am passionate about

I am passionate about youth education, specifically pre-K and elementary literacy education. Despite overwhelming evidence that reading skills are foundational to success in work and life, only 1 in 3 American students demonstrate grade level proficiency on national assessments in 4th and 8th grade. The statistics are even more troubling for students in low income neighborhoods. Recent studies suggest that students who cannot read proficiently by 3rd grade rarely catch up in later grades (3rd grade is a critical time where students begin to graduate from learning to read to reading to learn). Third graders who are not proficient on year end assessments are ~4x more likely to drop out before graduation compared to those with proficient reading skills. And literacy rates correlate to incarceration rates as well. Over 70% of inmates in America’s prisons cannot read above a fourth grade level. The chasm between the proficient and struggling readers starts well before kindergarten. Children aged 2 to 3 who are read to several times a day do materially better in kindergarten than children who are read to only a few times a week or less. This is a challenging but fixable problem (especially with combination of strong teachers, willing volunteers, and constantly improving ed tech) and hopefully one that I can work on with my OYW friends! As a former U.S. Marine, I’m also passionate about veteran / mental health issues . As Sebastian Junger articulates in his recent book, Tribe, the reason suicide and incarceration rates are so high is that veterans are coming home from deployments, snatched away from their teams (which have become families after months to years in war zone), and are not trained for today’s workforce. Many feel lost and dejected. I’d like to continue to generate awareness about veterans’ issues and support the community as best I can.

Actions

I have volunteered with Working In The Schools (WITS), a non-profit organization focused on improving childhood literacy rates, for most of the past decade. I started as a volunteer and currently serve as the Vice President of the Board of Directors and chair the Performance Measurement Committee. In 2018, our focus at WITS is to optimize our programs to ensure all children in Chicago have access to quality pre-K and elementary literacy education. This is ambitious goal but we’re up for the challenge. While in business school, I mentored more senior veterans (mostly Vietnam and Desert Storm Veterans) who were studying to get their GEDs and college degrees. In 2016, I helped raise money for a program called Urban Warriors which paired combat veterans with children / teens affiliated with gangs in Chicago to try to reduce violence through relationship building based off shared experiences.