The circumstances that students bring to BFF present daily challenges, and can be debilitating without the extra support provided at BFF. Students are encouraged to transform their future through the positive experiences they have while obtaining higher education.


Students are provided the real opportunity to obtain an education. When faced with mental health and learning disability struggles, traumatic childhoods or a combination of all three, students often lack the confidence and or strength to accomplish the daunting task of furthering their education. Through therapy and coaching at BFF, students can find that strength, empowering them to increase their control over not only their education, but many other important aspects of their own lives.


A unique aspect of BFF is the understanding that helping each situation requires a certain degree of adaptation. There is no cookie cutter method when it comes to helping individuals transform their lives. Starting from the selection process to graduation, the Brilliant Futures Foundation adapts the therapy and assistance provided to fit the specific needs of each student.


A successful mentor can pass on wisdom and expertise to mentees for the next generation to gain from. Success begins at the selection stage. Students selected for the BFF program demonstrate a genuine desire and potential to obtain their education. When the students are motivated, a strong mentor/mentee relationship can be formed where principles of respect, trust, and effective communication are applied to obtain the highest level of achievement. The staff at Brilliant Futures Foundation mentor students in such a way that after a diploma is earned, students can ‘pay it forward’ using the experience and knowledge gained through the mentor process.

Our Team

Ken Newell, Ph.D
Ken Newell, Ph.DExecutive Director
Co-Founder, Board Member, Executive Director
Administrative responsibilities include reporting to the Board the therapeutic and academic assessments relating to the admissions and selection process, execution of all matters for the Foundation, and Foundation development.
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BRIAN NELSONFinancial Director
Co-Founder, Board Member, Financial Director
Administrative responsibilities include ensuring prudent use of all assets, including facility, people, and good will; and provide oversight for all activities that advance the nonprofit’s effectiveness and sustainability.
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Patrick Nelson
Patrick NelsonFundraising Director
Co-Founder, Board Member, Fundraising Director
Administrative responsibilities include credibly soliciting contributions from foundations, organizations, and individuals as well as reporting to the Board the execution of all fundraising activities, public relations activity and marketing reports.
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Formal Education

Community Support

Personal Growth

They saved my child, but as importantly, they provided us the chance to evolve as a family.

alumni mom

I always knew my kid was smart and well liked.  I couldn’t understand why he didn’t think so.

Now, I realize how much better I could have listened.

Alumni dad

What an unbelievable, unimaginable opportunity.  I didn’t have any option to live an “American” dream and suddenly, I am in college, moving at light speed.

alumni student