College admissions officers attribute the organization’s success to the simplicity of its approach to students. It avoids mind-numbingly complex talk of financial-aid forms and formulas that scare away so many low-income families (and frustrate so many middle-income families, like my own when I was applying to college). QuestBridge instead gives students a simple message: If you get in, you can go.
Yet the broader lessons of QuestBridge aren’t only about how to communicate with students. They’re also how our society spends the limited resource that is financial aid.
The group’s founders, Michael and Ana Rowena McCullough, are now turning their attention to the estimated $3 billion in outside scholarships, from local Rotary Clubs, corporations and other groups, that are awarded every year to high school seniors. The McCulloughs see this money as a wasted opportunity, saying it comes too late to affect whether and where students go to college. It doesn’t help the many high-achieving, low-income strivers who don’t apply to top colleges — and often don’t graduate from any college.
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“Any private scholarship given at the end of senior year is intrinsically disconnected from the college application process,” Dr. McCullough said, “and it doesn’t have to be.”
- The New York Times takes a look at Questbridge, "which has quietly become one of the biggest players in elite-college admissions."
Colby Bohannan and a group of student friends at Texas State University in San Marcos, TX have formed the non-profit organization Former Majority Association for Equality
which intends to offer college scholarships solely to white men." "'I felt excluded,' he said
. 'If everyone else can find scholarships, why are we left out?'" "'To qualify for the group's scholarship, applicants have to be able to prove that they are at least 25 percent Caucasian ... We're not looking for blond-haired, blue-eyed, stereotypical white males,' he said
. 'My feeling is that if you can say you're 25 percent Caucasian, you're Caucasian enough for us.'" "Bohannan, the group's president, said the name comes from the idea that 'if you're not a male, and if you're not white, you're called a minority.' However, he said, 'I'm not sure white males are the majority anymore.'"* [more inside]
The 2004 Intelligence Authorization Act
included funding for a pilot program that provided scholarships in exchange for recipients completing at least one summer internship in the intelligence agencies. The Pat Roberts Intelligence Scholars Program
(PRISP) was praised in National Review but criticized by humanities organizations
as a threat
to academic integrity
. The 2010 Intelligence Authorization Act [400kb pdf]
submitted to Congress by Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair
makes the program a permanent budget item
. [more inside]
As the September 11 Fund gets ready to release another 75 million dollars in aid money
to the victims of the World Trade Center attacks, the House O.K.'s an 11.3 billion dollar aid program for New York City
, and the scholarship fund
for Trade Center families gets under way, Governor Pataki hands a memo to the struggling State University of New York school system demanding zero budget growth for this fiscal year
and a continued tuition freeze. Oh yeah, and he doesn't want anyone to get laid off, either. Of course New York City took the brunt of the attack, but isn't it about time to remember that an entire state took a serious financial blow?
You know it's true/I'm happy to be stuck with you
- high school students vie for a $2500 scholarship by attending their proms dressed in outfits made from duct tape. Interesting idea, although I question the No purchase Necessary
clause in the rules, and I'm pretty sure that they made more that $2500 from all the Duck brand duct tape sold to make the outfits.
Student loans will become grants for any who can't afford $134K for 4 years. How relevant attending college is--except for networking and the social milieu I guess--for the post-Internet teen I'm not sure. But anything which makes information and education more available and less tied to income is a fine thing.
$14,000 a year
for devout Christians attending "top 5" graduate and professional programs, in order to seed national leadership with believers. An alternative approach is Ave Maria School of Law
, founded by Domino's Pizza founder Tom Monaghan expressly because they believe that Christian professional education is essentially impossible in the elite institutions.