After completing their applications during College Application Month, students looking toward the next step in their education face an even more daunting challenge: finding the best way to afford that education. A wide array of both state, federal and private financial aid and scholarships is available for students either starting or continuing their journey after high school, but frequently a great deal of those scholarships go unclaimed due to students not applying. Often students avoid scholarship applications because they think that scholarships are only for those students at the top of their classes or for other students whose families are in the most dire economic need.
While many organizations create scholarships to help specific types of students based on any number of factors including interest, background or ethnicity, other organizations, such as the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation, offer scholarships to a wide array of students looking for assistance in affording their college education.
Three programs available to students from the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation reflect the variety of students who can benefit not just from the organization’s scholarships, but from many other private scholarships. Jack Kent Cooke Foundation proclaims that their group provides “the largest scholarships in the nation to high-performing students with financial need.” The foundation considers household incomes of up to $95,000 as being in “financial need,” noting that many applicants for their scholarships will also be eligible for Pell Grants.
The Foundation’s two most notable scholarships are the College Scholarship Program and Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship, both offering awards of up to $40,000 per year to students to help afford tuition, living expenses, books and other required fees at a 4-year college or university. The College Scholarship Program is available to U.S. high schools students graduating in the coming spring and intending to enroll full time at an accredited 4-year college the following Fall. The Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship is for current students at a community college are already enrolled in a 2-year institution with plans to transfer to a 4-year college or university the following fall. Both programs seek students who have a 3.5 GPA or better and, in the case of the College Scholarship Program, score in the top15% on standardized tests.
In hopes of creating students who can best take advantage of these programs, Jack Kent Cooke Foundation also offers a Young Scholars Program that provides individualized academic advising and financial support through an on-staff educational adviser who works closely with students in the program and their families to help tailor student interest and strengths while developing unique goals that will help them succeed in college. Each year, the Cooke Foundation selects up to 65 Young Scholars from a nationwide applicant pool based on a variety of qualifications that include high academic achievement and financial need, but also leadership skills, drive and persistence and the desire to help others.
For more information on these programs, or to learn more about the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation, visit their website at http://www.jkcf.org/.