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Dirk Van Velzen of Prison Scholar Fund on being an SVP Fast Pitch 2015 applicant and winner!

Posted by Sujata Agrawal

In 2015, Prison Scholar Fund founder Dirk Van Velzen won first place and $20,000 in the SVP Fast Pitch Startup Nonprofit track and well as the Most Improved Award.

“I was completely blown away by the expertise of the SVP Fast Pitch. Our coach, Troy, is amazing: extremely talented, shockingly humble, and generous with his time. You should have seen his face when we won! And I say, ‘is amazing’ because he remains a trusted advisor as we plow forward changing the world.”

The Prison Scholar Fund supports incarcerated students, helping them to develop the skills they need to enter the workforce upon their release, reduce the likelihood that they will return to prison, and become successful members of their communities. The organization provides students with the tools such as funding and mentoring/counseling services. It supports students enrolled in college courses, vocational education, and skill development.

The impact of participating in SVP Fast Pitch 2015 on his life and his organization:


How SVP Fast Pitch coaches/mentors helped him:


How it feels to be an SVP Fast Pitch 2015 winner:


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