Blaine Slack

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"It’s amazing to witness the trajectory of a scholar. It’s an opportunity to positively affect someone’s life in such a tangible way. . . OMD Scholars epitomize perseverance and go on to do amazing things in this world. Being even a small part of that process is amazing."


Blaine was attracted to OMD because he saw that it was “actively tackling a unique challenge in our society” and was targeting “a fraction of students who have a high level of motivation to do something meaningful but simply need the resources to ensure they do.” He recognized that OMD Scholars “epitomized perseverance,” and wanted to be involved in helping them achieve their goals.

Blaine was matched with Octavio, a student at Prairie State College. They soon formed a close bond: “The relationship I had with my scholar was incredible. I’ve learned just as much from him, if not more, than he has from me.” Octavio was an excellent student, and together they mapped out his next steps, all the while identifying any potential challenges and “[tackling] them together as a team.” His future plans began to take shape, and Blaine provided support at every turn to ensure that Octavio was setting himself up for success. In the end, Octavio was accepted to his dream school with a full ride: “We knocked it out of the park.”

Blaine was also invested in the OMD community as a whole. During Saturday Development Sessions, he loved hearing about scholar’s accomplishments: “It’s incredible when a handful of scholars take the stage and share with the group the positive developments going on in their life. It’s exciting, emotional, and alludes how impactful this organization really is.”