Tapping into Milwaukee's Potential A third of the students in Milwaukee's public schools drop out every year. The consequences for our community are real: Students who drop out are eight times more likely to become incarcerated and three times more likely to be unemployed. When a student drops out of school it has a lasting effect on our communities and society as a whole. Students who drop out earn roughly $1 million less than high school graduates. Furthermore, out-of-school, out-of-work youths collectively cost Americans about $1.6 trillion in increased social services and lost earnings and taxes over the course of their lifetimes. But there is a solution. Using near-peer mentors in Milwaukee's most under-served schools to address specific areas that lead to students dropping out, City Year helps close the gap, between what students need to succeed and what schools are designed to provide.