The Academy is a non-profit organization based in Utah that seeks to alleviate poverty through micro enterprise education. During a 6-week program, students learn how to become self-reliant by starting their own small businesses. Although not funded or sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, many students who attend The Academy are LDS returned missionaries.
How successful are graduates?
More than 80 percent of student graduates are now earning a living and on their way to self-reliance. Roughly 60 percent currently operate their own businesses and another 22 percent are now earning a living working for others. Some graduates return to college after the Academy.
Why does the Academy focus on training returned missionaries?
Returned missionaries already have a great foundation of success to build upon. Mission service gives young people experience in areas such as time management, goal setting, perseverance and leadership training. After graduating from the Academy, each of the students agree to teach what they have learned in their churches and communities. In fact, several graduates in the Philippines have taught at colleges and universities near their homes.
Is the ACE Chapters program compatible with the Church Self-Reliance program?
The ACE is a resource available to members of the Church and works together and with the knowledge of the Department of Self-Reliance of the Church in Mexico. That’s why we invite graduates of the “How to Start and Grow my Business” course to join the ACE Chapters.
Can graduates of the Church Course "How can I start and grow my business" participate in Chapters?
All of them are welcome. When you enter, you will be asked for some information to follow up. Once integrated into a Chapter, you can participate in the benefits mentioned above.
Is there a dress code for Chapter meetings?
The dress is casual or whatever you have, provided it is modest. It asks that the behavior of each assistant be in accordance with the principles of the Church.
Who runs the Chapters?
Each Chapter is led by a presidency elected and trained by the ACE. Being part of a Chapter Presidency is not an assignment or ecclesiastical appeal. People serve on a voluntary basis.
Does it cost to belong to a Chapter?
Belonging to a Chapter and attending your monthly meetings is free. Some chapters request small fees for study material to be used. Online resources are free. The Course and Business Seminars, in addition to Business Practices are fully accessible costs (see the respective sections of each)
How often to Chapters meet?
Most get together every month, however on some occasions this can be adjusted to local needs
How is this non-profit organization funded?
Donations come from 200 families in the United States, Mexico and the Philippines. The majority of monetary donations come from 25 of the 200 families. The Academy is not sponsored nor endorsed by any religious, academic or civic institution.
How much does enrollment cost and what are the donations used for?
The six-week course currently costs $600 per student in Mexico and $100 per student in the Philippines. Every student is required to pay at least a portion of this cost. This allows the Academy to provide food, lodging, school supplies and training. A non-profit organization called the Called2Serve Foundation pays the remaining balance. The majority of operating costs are covered by sponsors in the United States and other in-country donors.
How can I help?
The easiest, fastest and most effective way to help is to donate funds. You can donate here or send your donation to The Called2Serve Foundation, 2520 North University Avenue, Suite 100, Provo, Utah 84604. Our foundation is a charitable 501(c)3 as designated by the IRS. All deductions are allowable on your federal taxes.