2018 Class

Leadership • Mentorship • Rites of Passage

2018 Highlights

Leadership • Mentorship • Rites of Passage

At the Well Conferences, Inc. introduces…
From the Fire: Leadership Academy for Young Men
A Rites of Passage Program

July 21-August 2, 2019
Princeton University
McCosh Hall
Princeton, NJ 08540

Leadership    Mentorship    Rites of Passage

From the Fire: Leadership Academy for Young Men is a two week boarding program on the campus of Princeton University that is tailored to scholars from diverse socio-economic backgrounds who are currently in the tenth or eleventh grades of high school. From the Fire seeks to nurture and cultivate scholars by providing an enriching environment that combines leadership development through transformative education; mentoring from seasoned male influencers, and an exceptional Rites of Passage program. Participants will be talented scholar citizens that demonstrate both academic promise and commitment to community service.

Why From the Fire?

Young men of color today face challenges unprecedented in our history: social, cultural, and psychological challenges. The answer, proven throughout history and forged in the crucible of the experiences of exemplars of excellence, is a combination of the following components:

  • Rites of Passage provides a journey of self-discovery that unlocks the hidden resilience within our students as fundamental to a manhood which overcomes toxic masculinity.
  • Mentorship offered as a form of “deep caring” in order to overcome widespread indifference to our most vulnerable young men.
  • Leadership Development through transformative education that encourage young men of color to support each other and strive together toward high expectations on a journey to become economic, political, and thought leaders.

From the Fire’s curriculum and programming is research-based and designed by a team of educators and leaders with decades of experience in adult and young adult education, social change activism and community development. It is rooted in the spiritual and intellectual traditions forged in the justice struggles of African American and other global minorities for the last 500 years and longer. The program’s core beliefs and practices are guided by an indomitable faith in the human courage, creativity and potential of these souls, indeed in all human beings.

Delroy Lindo, Actor and Director


Delroy Lindo has had memorable roles in films such as The Cider House RulesHeist; and garnered critical acclaim in a trio of films with director Spike Lee, Clockers; Crooklyn and Malcolm X. Other notable films include Wondrous OblivionThe CoreThe OneGone in 60 Seconds; Ransom; Get Shorty; Romeo Must Die; This Christmas (also as executive producer); the recent remake of Point Break; and Pixar’s Up! He’ll next be seen in the independent films, Malicious and 001LithiumX. On TV, he currently appears as Adrian Boseman in CBS’ The Good Fight (sequel to The Good Wife). He’s featured in TV series such as Believe; The Chicago Code and Kidnapped; and in TV films, such as Soul of The GameProfoundly Normal; Strange Justice (winning a Peabody Award); & Glory & Honor. He won an NAACP Award for a guest appearance on Law and Order: SVU. On Broadway, Lindo received Tony and Drama Desk Award nominations, playing Herald Loomis in August Wilson’s, Joe Turner’s Come and Gone; and played Walter Lee in the Kennedy Center and Los Angeles productions of A Raisin in the Sun (Helen Hayes Award Nomination and NAACP Image Award, Best Actor). Lindo directed the plays Blue Door and Joe Turner’s Come and Gone at Berkeley Repertory Theater; and won a Los Angeles Theater Weekly Award directing the play, Medal of Honor Rag. Mr. Lindo has an Honorary Doctorate in Arts and Humanities from Virginia Union University; a BFA degree (cum laude) from San Francisco State University; and a MFA from New York University.

Danny Glover


Danny Glover has been a commanding presence on screen, stage and television for more than 25 years. His first leading role was in 1984’s Oscar®-nominated Best Picture Places in the Heart. The following year, Glover starred in two more Best Picture nominees: Peter Weir’s Witness and Steven Spielberg’s The Color Purple. In 1987, Glover partnered with Mel Gibson in the first Lethal Weapon film and went on to star in three hugely successful Lethal Weapon sequels. Glover has also invested his talents in more personal projects, including the award-winning To Sleep With Anger, which he executive produced and for which he won an Independent Spirit Award for Best Actor; Bopha!; Manderlay; Missing in America; and the film version of Athol Fugard’s play Boesman and Lena. On the small screen, Glover won an Image Award and a Cable ACE Award and earned an Emmy nomination for his performance in the title role of the HBO movie Mandela. He has also received Emmy nominations for his work in the acclaimed miniseries Lonesome Dove and the telefilm Freedom Song. As a director, he earned a Daytime Emmy nomination for Showtime’s Just a Dream.  In 2005, Glover co-founded Louverture Films dedicated to the development and production of films of historical relevance, social purpose, commercial value and artistic integrity. Glover graduated from San Francisco State College and attended The Black Actors’ Workshop, American Conservatory Theatre. He received an Honorary Doctorate of Fine Arts Degree from San Francisco State University  in May 1997.

Toby Sanders


Rev. Toby Sanders is a teacher, motivational speaker, writer, and social activist for educational and economic justice and faith-based economic development. He is an adjunct professor, scholar, youth mentor, board member of Children’s Futures, and former President of the Trenton Board of Education. Rev. Sanders is the founding Pastor of Beloved Community of Trenton, New Jersey. He is an honors graduate of Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia and a Masters of Divinity graduate of Princeton Theological Seminary where he received the prestigious Aaron E. Gast Award in Urban Ministry. He studied Religion Ethics and Politics at Princeton University, where he received a Presidential Fellowship.

Program Features:

Leadership Development

  • Critical reading and writing
  • Team building through Project Based Learning (PBL)
  • Motivational speakers and thought leaders
  • Financial aid and scholarship boot camp 


  • Embedded mentorship model in classroom
  • Mentor/mentee relationship building during and after the program
  • Mentor and mentee training
  • Peer mentoring instruction 

Rites of Passage Program

  • Assists scholars with social-, communal-, cultural-, and self-development
  • Experiential activities involving mental and physical and emotional trials and challenges.
  • Closing Ceremony marking passage into young manhood 

Tuition and Fees

  • $2,995.00 -Two Week Boarding Program
  • Tuition and fees include curriculum, meals, and field trips. 

Financial Aid

We are committed to providing need-based assistance to select qualified applicants. Please indicate the request for financial assistance on the application.  Apply early. Financial aid is provided on a first come basis. 

Admission Criteria

Participants are selected on a competitive case by case basis. A qualified application includes the following components:

  • Completed online application
  • Required release forms (applicable upon acceptance)
  • 2 Letters of recommendation
  • 3.0 GPA preferred
  • Essay 

Admission Process Checklist

  • Complete the online application
  • Submit recommendation letters
  • Submit Recent high school transcript
  • Essay A 2-page essay on the one of the following topics:

What person in your community has made a positive impact and how has that individual inspired you?


Describe two creative activities that could help make your community a better place.

After acceptance to the program, the following documents are required.

  • Medical and photo release form
  • Immunization record

The essay and required forms can be sent via the email that will be delivered after the application has been processed.

Space is extremely limited. Apply early!