Through our scholarship programs, The McConnell Foundation seeks to fulfill our mission by identifying and investing in students who are most likely to have a positive impact on the community. Even before they are selected, our scholarship recipients have already demonstrated that they genuinely care about the well-being of others. By helping students achieve success in college and beyond, we hope to increase their influence and ability to help improve their communities. We seek not just to do good to our McConnell Family of scholarship recipients, but to do good through them.
Types of support we offer
Recipients of The McConnell Foundation Vista and Scholars Programs have access to $30,000 of financial support during their academic careers. They may request up to $7,500 per year depending on their individual financial need. Unused amounts may be rolled forward for a total of six years. If our students finish their initial degree goals with time and money left over, they can use the remainder for the next higher degree goal. For example, Vista students who finish an associate’s degree and transfer to a qualified four-year university may use their remaining funds at their transfer institution. McConnell Scholars who finish their bachelor’s degrees within five years may use any unspent amount for graduate programs. This benefit is especially useful for Scholars who are also recipients of major scholarships such as The Ford Family Foundation Scholars Program, as they can defer the entirety of their McConnell funds until graduate school.
Financial support is a necessary ingredient in student success, but it isn’t the only one. McConnell Scholarship Program Officer Dave Tanner monitors, advises, and supports each of our recipients through their college experience and beyond. His first priority is the well-being of each student in his care. Dave is highly interested in the transformative effect of the college experience on student growth, aspiration, and self-identity, particularly for non-traditional and first-generation college students. He seeks to help our recipients achieve holistic success by focusing on their strengths, and helping them match their natural talents, interests, and aptitudes with their academic and professional goals. Dave cares deeply about each student’s success and feels honored to have the opportunity to work with such talented, energetic, and community-minded people.
Every year on the second weekend in August, current and alumni McConnell scholarship recipients gather for a three-day conference at beautiful Camp McCumber. This conference is special because our students design and lead it themselves based on what they want to learn and what they have to share. We’ve had workshops on topics including coping with college academics, studying abroad, fitness and nutrition, stress management, personal finance and building credit, how to drive a stick-shift, finding internships, cooking on a budget, and many more – all lead by our students for our students. We also take time just for fun! The purpose of our annual conference is to help our students succeed in college and beyond by sharing useful information and developing lasting, supportive friendships and peer networks.