Scholarship Award Process

In keeping with the program’s highest scholarship standards, becoming an SQ Scholar involves a multi-tiered selection process that relies on your academic performance, commitment, involvement, and personal integrity. See application guidelines below.

CALENDAR OF ACCEPTANCE

SQ Scholarship Applications accepted October 1–December 1, 2017.
See below to see if you qualify.

Recruiting begins fall of the student's seventh grade year. As you apply for an SQ Scholarship, see the schedule below. Late applications will not be considered.

October 1, 2017

Scholarship Application Period Opens

December 1, 2017

Scholarship Applications Due to Your School Principal

March 2, 2018

Announcement of SQ PREP Scholarship Awards

March 16, 2018

Scholarship Acceptance & Confirmations Due

End of Summer

1st Selection & Notification of SQ PREP Eighth Grade Awards

End of December

2nd Selection & Notification of SQ Scholarships for High School

STEP 1. DO YOU QUALIFY?

While anyone can apply to become an SQ Scholar, the program is rigorous, competitive and selective. Your school principal or teacher must recommend you for participation. Eligibility is based on the following criteria:

  • Are you a top achiever and role model in your school, home and community?
  • Are you currently in seventh grade at a Big Shoulders Fund Elementary School?
  • Do you consider yourself a good student? Does your report card reflect mostly “A’s”?
  • Will you be the first one in your immediate family to attend college?
  • Are you willing to commit to weekly meetings for a Summer Enrichment Program?
  • Can your family demonstrate financial need?

STEP 2. APPLY

In fall of your seventh grade year, complete and submit your SQ Scholarship Application to be chosen for the SQ PREP Summer Enrichment Program.

SQ Scholarship Application (Download pdf)

STEP 3. SQ PREP SUMMER

  • Runs during summer before eighth grade, including academic enrichment, field trips, and skill building
  • SQ PREP Eighth Grade Selection: Announcement of continuing scholars at summer's end
  • Includes a $500 Scholarship toward eighth grade tuition

STEP 4. SQ PREP EIGHTH GRADE

  • Begins in fall of eighth grade, including high school test prep and enrichment activities
  • Official SQ Scholar selection announced by end of December, prior to high school testing and enrollment
  • Final SQ Scholars will continute programming through eighth grade and the summer prior to high school

STEP 5. SQ SCHOLARS

  • Runs freshman year through senior year of high school
  • Includes a 4-year, renewable high school scholarship* at a Big Shoulders Fund High School, depending on family's demonstrated need and tuition amount; student must continue to meet expectations for grades, behavior, and attendance at program meetings.
  • Provides ongoing enrichment including mentoring, adademic tutoring, ACT Test Prep, social, cultural and service programming.
*Scholarships are not guaranteed. They are renewable annually based on the students’ academic performance, behavior, and demonstration of commitment. SQ Scholars are eligible to continue in the program even if they choose to attend a CPS selective enrollment school or selective charter school. The same academic/performance requirements apply upon annual scholarship renewal.