Scholars Program

The McConnell Foundation Scholars Program is for students seeking bachelor’s degrees at four-year colleges and universities.

The purpose of The McConnell Foundation Scholars Program is to identify and support students who are uniquely qualified to bring about positive change in their communities. Ideal candidates are high-achieving students, are among the first generation in their family to attend college, have overcome personal challenges, have positive influence on younger siblings or community members, and demonstrate commitment to the values of giving back and caring for others. Other excellent candidates are high-achieving students who come from more advantaged backgrounds, but who are very aware of their advantages and have shown extraordinary personal commitment to serving others.

The McConnell Scholars Program is a social investment. Return on that investment occurs when our Scholars are successful in attaining their academic, professional, and personal goals, and then use their success to help others succeed. Our investment fails if we select students who are mainly interested in their own success, no matter how high-achieving they may be, or if we select students who are very likely to be successful without our assistance. The one personal characteristic all Scholars share is a genuine concern for the well-being of others. It may be expressed differently from Scholar to Scholar, but it’s always there.

McConnell Scholars Program Application Requirements

Students who wish to apply to The McConnell Scholars Program must meet all of the following conditions for their application to be considered. Please read them carefully before starting your application.

You are eligible to apply to The McConnell Foundation Scholars Program if:

  • You live or attend high school in Modoc, Shasta, Siskiyou, Tehama, or Trinity County, or you attend Big Valley High School in Lassen County
  • You will be entering full-time in a bachelor’s degree program at a qualified university or college for the upcoming fall term
  • Your Expected Family Contribution (EFC) from your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or California Dream Act Application is $8,600 or less
  • You are entering college as a freshman or as a transfer junior from College of the Siskiyous or Shasta College
  • You will have completed a high school diploma or GED with a grade point average of 3.0 or better, or you will have completed a transfer AA degree from College of the Siskiyous or Shasta College with a grade point average of 2.0 or better
  • You will be working on your first bachelor’s degree
  • You have not been convicted of a felony
  • You are not directly related to any McConnell Foundation Board of Directors or Program Services staff member, or current McConnell Scholars selection committee member

What is a Qualified College or University?

The McConnell Foundation Scholars Program financial award may be used at most colleges and universities in the United States. There are some institutions at which it may not be used. Please make sure that your intended university or college meets the following qualifications before starting The McConnell Foundation Scholars Program application:

  • The institution confers bachelor’s degrees. The award may not be used at technical colleges or community colleges.
  • The institution is regionally accredited. You can find this out by searching for the name of your university and “accreditation” on the internet. Regional accreditation insures that your units will transfer to other accredited institutions. For example, The Art Institutes (The Art Institute of Chicago, The Art Institute of San Francisco, etc.) is not regionally accredited. None of your units completed at The Art Institute would count at San Francisco State University if you decided you wanted to transfer. You’d have to start all over again, and your time and money would have gone to waste.
  • The institution is not-for-profit. Some universities are for-profit. This creates a conflict of interest where the financial bottom line can become more important than the well-being of the student. The Art Institutes and University of Phoenix are for-profit institutions.
  • The institution may not discriminate in hiring or admission. The McConnell Foundation does not financially support any institution that places restrictions on hiring or services with regards to race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, pregnancy, political ideology, age, creed, religion, heritage, ancestry, national origin, veteran status, disability unrelated to job or course of study requirements, or any other characteristic protected by law. Most colleges and universities do not discriminate in this fashion, with the exception of certain faith-based institutions that require affiliation with a particular religious group or a statement of faith as part of the application. Some examples are Simpson, Azusa Pacific, Biola, George Fox, Corban, Vanguard, and Point Loma universities.
  • The institution offers the bulk of its courses on a physical campus located in the United States of America, rather than offering classes online only. The information learned in class is only one of the many benefits of the undergraduate experience. We want our Scholars to have access to the many opportunities available on a college campus.
Click here for partial lists of qualified and unqualified institutions

Partial List of Universities Qualified for McConnell Foundation Scholars Awards:

  • Brown University
  • Cal Poly Pomona
  • Cal Poly San Luis Obispo
  • California Institute of the Arts
  • CSU Bakersfield
  • CSU Channel Islands
  • CSU Chico
  • CSU Dominguez Hills
  • CSU East Bay
  • CSU Fresno
  • CSU Fullerton
  • CSU Long Beach
  • CSU Los Angeles
  • CSU Maritime Academy
  • CSU Monterey Bay
  • CSU Northridge
  • CSU Sacramento
  • CSU San Bernardino
  • CSU San Marcos
  • CSU Stanislaus
  • Dominican University
  • Gonzaga University
  • Harvard University
  • Humboldt State University
  • Loyola Marymount University
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • National University
  • San Diego State University
  • San Francisco State University
  • San Jose State University
  • Santa Clara University
  • Sonoma State University
  • St. Mary’s University
  • Stanford University
  • UC Berkeley
  • UC Davis
  • UC Irvine
  • UC Los Angeles
  • UC Merced
  • UC San Diego
  • UC San Francisco (offers graduate degrees only)
  • UC Santa Barbara
  • UC Santa Cruz
  • All other U.S. public universities and colleges (e.g. Southern Oregon University)
  • University of San Diego
  • University Of San Francisco

Partial List of Institutions Not Qualified for McConnell Scholars Awards:

  • Azusa Pacific University
  • Baylor University
  • Biola University
  • Community (2-Year) Colleges
  • DeVry University
  • Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising (FIDM)
  • Heald College
  • ITT Technical Institute
  • Oral Roberts University
  • Pepperdine University
  • Point Loma University
  • Redding Institute of Technology
  • Simpson University
  • The Art Institutes
  • University of Phoenix

Don’t see your intended university on the list? Contact The McConnell Foundation Scholarship Program Officer

Apply for the McConnell Scholars Program

McConnell Scholars Program Application

McConnell Scholars Program Application

Click here to learn more about the application process and apply.

McConnell Scholarship Applications

The McConnell Foundation, the Shasta Regional Community Foundation, the Shasta County Board of Education, and College OPTIONS have worked together to create a shared scholarship application website – North State Scholarships.

Clicking here will take you to the North State Scholarships welcome page. From this page, you can either search for The McConnell Foundation scholarship program applications or by clicking “View All Scholarships,” you can see all the applications from the four organizations. It’s easy to import your information from one application to another. You can now apply to several scholarships in the same time it used to take to apply to only one or two.


For specific questions regarding The McConnell Foundation Scholarships  please contact Scholarship Program Officer Dave Tanner at (530) 226-6233 or by using the email contact form.

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