Map Your Future is a program that started in 2015 when a group of community partners came together to help students in Ross County successfully graduate from high school prepared for work and/or college. The mission of Map You Future is to increase parent and student knowledge of college and career options and resources, so that each Ross County student can develop a six-year plan and graduate from high school prepared for a successful future. Led by United Way of Ross County, the partnership originally included the Chillicothe Ross Public Library, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Ohio University-Chillicothe, Chillicothe City Schools, Pickaway Ross Career and Technology Center, Glatfelter, Kenworth, the Chamber of Commerce, Lifting up Jesus Church and other concerned citizens and parents. Adena Health System later became another partner with Map Your Future.
Governor Kasich, at the time, was offering a Community Connectors Education Grant to communities that combined nonprofits, schools, faith-groups and businesses in a unique way to mentor students to be successful. United Way of Ross County was able to supplement the program with additional funding, and all partners brought time, talents and donations in kind to the program. Chillicothe Schools was chosen for the pilot program, with the intent to go county-wide if successful. 6th-12th graders and their parents are the target population for the program. Map Your Future was inspired by the Military Child Education Coalition's Parent to Parent Program's "Chart Your Course" Program, which operates on the premise that parents play a crucial role in their child's education. Research shows that parental involvement is positively linked to student achievement through high school and beyond. Map Your Future is run by past educators who believe parents, guardians and mentors are the key to success, and who are dedicated to helping parents, guardians and mentors understand the many resources available to help their children. When parents are unable or unwilling to be involved, Map Your Future mentors are available weekly in the school and online through this website, to work with students directly. Map Your Future provides various workshops and resources to help parents and students in their planning process.