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2016 in Review

CEO NEWSLETTER 20 Years of Transformation What is possible when we all work together for the benefit of our young people to reach their fullest potential? What happens when we partner to invest in talent and shephard Chicago’s deserving students through obstacles to ensure they achieve all they can? In a word: Transformation

Scholar Spotlight

Meet Chrisford (‘21)

Whatever the case for the world at large, 2016 was an incredible year for Chicago Scholars. We recruited and enrolled our biggest class to date, bringing 525 of Chicago’s best and brightest high school juniors into our Class of 2021. Meanwhile, we supported our Class of 2020 through the college decision process, helping them to choose their best match and fit college. In the summer, while the new Scholar class began working with their mentors on their college applications at summer workshops and had their first college counseling sessions, we hosted 170 Scholars at the First Look Career Conference, and the Class of 2020 headed off to college for the first time. In the fall, the College Success team embarked on a heavy travel season to 36 college campuses across the country, meeting one-on-one with 332 Scholars. Then, at our 10th Onsite Admission Forum, nearly 1,000 Scholars interviewed one-on-one with 176 colleges and universities. More than 1,500 offers of admission and 53 million dollars in merit aid were awarded that day. This year was record-breaking for us in so many ways, but then again, every year is. Over the past 20 years, we have continually set ambitious goals, broken our own records, and scaled our impact, ultimately serving more than 2,400 students from more than 75 of Chicago’s community areas. Our growing impact is due in large part to the strong partnerships we have in every sector, including Chicago Public Schools, Chicago-based companies, community based organizations and colleges and universities. When we unite behind our city’s deserving young people, look at what we are capable of. Our Scholars are the future leaders of this city - by making them a priority we are transforming Chicago.

Chrisford Fausta is a high school senior at Epic Academy Charter High School and lives in South Chicago. Passionate about activism and business, Chrisford plans to major in Political Science, Business and African-American studies when he heads to college in the fall. One day, he hopes to own a business. At Onsite, he completed 5 interviews with representatives of highly selective schools (think schools like Stanford, Harvard and Princeton) and has already received two offers of admission. He is most excited about being able to meet new people and experience different cultures in college. “Thanks to Chicago Scholars, I was able to meet representatives from top schools in the nation and create a personal statement that represents me as a person much more than a test score.”

Chicago Scholars

2016 in Review

10th Onsite Admissions Forum Breaks Records It was a life-changing day. On October 25, 176 colleges and universities came together to interview 1,000 of Chicago’s most talented students at the 10th Onsite Admissions Forum. More than 1,500 admission offers and nearly $52 million in merit aid were awarded on the spot that day. We were honored that Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth, and Senator Cory Booker along with many corporate and civic leaders joined us at Onsite to wish our Scholars well. At the luncheon, we were joined by guest speakers Chicago Scholars alumni Daniela Fernandez (‘15) and Paul Trussell (‘04). We were also pleased to honor Sandra P. Guthman with the Crystal Award for her tremendous leadership, commitment and philanthropy to organizations like ours who are changing the lives of Chicago’s talented Scholars, creating a more vibrant community for us all.

Chicago Scholars in the News Chicago Tribune

‘Now I know I’m going to college.’ A day changes lives for CPS students

DNA Info

Chicago Students Get College Acceptance On The Spot At Navy Pier


Hundreds Of Chicago High School Students Interviewed By College Admission Reps

USA Today

Meet a Modern Woman: Dominique Jordan Turner

Join us in transformation: Become a mentor Our Scholars are paired with adult mentors from across the city of Chicago who serve as important guides as Scholars tackle the college admissions process in their senior year of high school and the transition to their first year of college. We are looking for individuals like yourself to become mentors and change the lives of these deserving Chicago students. This year, we need to recruit 200 mentors in order to serve the incoming class of 2022. Learn more at

Chicago Scholars

2016 in Review

We have a new look As we celebrate 20 years and look forward to a future full of opportunity, growth and transformation, we’re excited to unveil our new brand. Our new logo represents our vision for the city of Chicago: A city upheld by Chicago Scholars, through the transformative power of education (books building the skyline), mentorship and leadership (books leaning together to support each other in standing tall). The star above the representation of Willis Tower symbolizes Chicago reaching its potential, the multi-colored books represent the diversity of Scholars standing together as leaders from every Chicago neighborhood, creating an unparalleled workforce that accurately reflects the diversity of society. EDUCATION + MENTORSHIP + LEADERSHIP = TRANSFORMATION

We’re excited to begin the next chapter - here’s to the next 20 years!

Class of 2022 Application Open Know a high school junior who is passionate about going to college? We are accepting applications for the next class of Scholars. The deadline to apply is February 10. Eligible students should apply online at “As the first in my family to go away to college, instead of feeling alone, I knew Chicago Scholars would always be there for me.” Torrence Sorrell, ‘15

We’re seeing stars We are pleased to announce that we have received the Gold Star Mentoring Program Award from the Illinois Mentoring Partnership. The Gold Star Mentoring Program Award is awarded by Illinois Mentoring Partnership (IMP) to Illinois-based mentoring programs that meet or exceed “best practices across six program areas, as established by MENTOR: The National Mentoring Partnership, in cooperation with the nation’s foremost authorities on mentoring.” IMP recognizes programs that offer the best outcomes for mentors and mentees, and we are proud to be recognized for our committment to excellence in mentoring.

Key Dates

January 26

February 10

February 15

Match and Fit Findings Breakfast

Class of ‘22 Application Deadline

College Mentor Open House

CEO Newsletter: 2016 in Review  

Chicago Scholars' 2016 year in review.

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