21st Century Scholars

February 27, 2008

By Jake Jones 

Getting through college is often difficult enough, but when students also have to carry the burden of financial restrictions sometimes the prospect of even attending college becomes an impossibility.

The 21st Century Scholars program was created to change this by giving low-income students the opportunity to go to college if they fulfill certain criteria that revolves around their life choices and their academic careers during high school.

Students enroll in the program between 6th and 8th grade and they must sign a pledge stating that they will maintain a 2.0 GPA and abstain from drugs, alcohol, and violence.

The scholarship would apply to Indiana colleges or trade schools for two or four year public institutions. The scholarship would guarantee eight semesters of college.

If a student participates in any negative behavior such as drugs, alcohol or crime then they will forfeit the benefits of the scholarship. Pauline Jarvis-Ward of Academic Support Services said “When kids have something to look forward to, it allows them to overcome a negative environment”.  The extra support from the program has helped maintain an 85.3% retention rate among participants who now attend IU South Bend.

Overall the program helps to increase enrollment and give local students the skills they need to join the workforce after graduation. When asked for some final thoughts on the program Jarvid-Ward said, “I think it’s a win-win situation all the way around… it is a great opportunity and I would encourage all who are eligible to take advantage of it.”

For more information on the program contact the Academic Support Services office in AI 148.  

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