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About FAAN

Emerging network of organizations since 2016

The number of backbone organizations focused on building capacity in the field of foster care and higher education in states and jurisdictions have grown rapidly since 2016 and are now organized into a network known as the Fostering Academic Achievement Nationwide (FAAN) network.

The Fostering Academic Achievement Nationwide network was started in 2016 by Maddy Day, consultant and former director of Fostering Success Michigan, and John Emerson, formerly with Casey Family Programs, to bring together leaders of statewide foster care and higher education backbone organizations in an effort to share learning and best practices in policy and programming across the field. Since that time FAAN has grown from 9 states represented to 18 represented today.​

The FAAN network is uniquely poised to fill the void in the field of foster care and higher education by leveraging the collective expertise of their members, the campuses they represent, and the students they serve while also influencing the national postsecondary improvement and attainment agendas.

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Our Purpose

Bringing together leaders of statewide foster care and higher education organizations in an effort to create pathways and remove barriers for students in foster care.

Our Vision

Accelerating the national conversation to increase equity in postsecondary educational attainment for students who have experience in foster care.

*By “Postsecondary Educational Attainment” we mean: The completion of high-quality credentials beyond a high school diploma including a trade certificate, Associate’s Degree, Bachelor’s Degree, and higher professional degrees.

We are driven by the belief that students who experienced foster care should have the support they need in their pursuit of higher education.


We believe sharing creates growth. Only by working together will we find answers to difficult problems.

Strive toward equity

We fight for equity for students with lived experience, centering Black, Indigenous, Latinx students of color and those who identify as LGBTQIA+.

Wisdom of Lived Experience

We collaborate with and learn from those who have experienced foster care, which makes our work stronger. We trust their experiences and the insight it brings to our work.


We don’t believe one size fits all. We approach each challenge with curiosity and work to find a solution that answers the need.