The Center for Talent Development's Jack Kent Cooke Scholarship Program
CTD's Jack Kent Cooke Scholarship Program
Jack Kent Cooke Young Scholars and College Scholarship Programs

The Young Scholars Program provides the most personalized, generous scholarship experience in the nation. The Foundation works closely with Scholars and their families to construct a tailored educational program that includes, but is not limited to, support for summer programs, distance learning courses, and music and art instruction. Some Young Scholars attend a private school if none of their public school options adequately serve their academic potential; however, many stay in their public schoolsNorthwestern University’s Center for Talent Development (CTD) assists the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation in building awareness of its prestigious Young Scholars Program and College Scholarship Program.

Tammie Stewart
, CTD’s community outreach manager, acts as a representative to the program. She can respond to inquiries and serve as your personal advocate, encourager and coach throughout the application process.

Below, we've answered some frequently asked questions about the Young Scholars Program. Please visit the JKC College Scholarship webpage for information on opportunities for grades 11 and 12. If we haven't addressed what's on your mind, just contact us. Thank you for your interest in JKC!

    What is the Jack Kent Cooke Young Scholars Program?
    The best way to learn about the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation’s Young Scholars Program is to visit the program’s web site. In brief, though, the Young Scholars Program selects academically high-achieving students with financial need and provides them with the most personalized, generous scholarship experience in the nation. Students apply for the program while in grade 7, enter the program in grade 8 and reap its benefits through high school.

    The Foundation works closely with Scholars and their families to construct a tailored educational program that includes, but is not limited to, support for summer programs, distance learning courses and music and art instruction. Through financial assistance and the support of an educational adviser, the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation enables Young Scholars to dream big and enjoy the best education possible while in pursuit of those dreams.

    The program seems too good to be true. Is it for real?
    In a word, yes. While financial support of up to $40,000 for educational endeavors throughout high school seems incredible, the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation makes it reality for about 50 students each year. To hear how the lucky Scholars feel about the opportunity, watch the Young Scholars Program Video.

    Why should I apply for the Young Scholars Program?

    There are essentially two reasons to apply: 

    • By applying, you have a shot at being selected. 
    • Even if you’re not selected – and, let’s face it, more than 90% of applicants aren’t – the benefits of applying are great. By completing the application, you become a contender, and that alone builds confidence and elevates your expectations. Additionally, completing the Young Scholars Program application is excellent practice in applying for future scholarships. You’ll learn how to gather and organize financial records, solicit teacher recommendations and write compelling essays. Applying for the Young Scholars Program is a skill-building exercise that will benefit you for many years to come!

    The application is long and the competition steep. Is it really worth it to apply?
    “Think Big. Work Hard. Achieve.” This motto is printed on each and every one of the Young Scholars Program’s 32-page application, for good reason. By applying, you gain practice in thinking big. By applying, you must work hard. But only by applying will you achieve the benefits that submitting an application can bring.

    Does this mean everyone should apply? No. Do make sure you meet the eligibility requirements, consider the selection criteria and are willing to uphold the Foundation’s expectations of Young Scholars. Contact us if you have questions or want to discuss this question further.

    How can CTD help me with the application process?
    If you’re overwhelmed and don’t know where to begin, we’ll encourage you. If you have questions, we’ll provide answers. If you’re halfway through and don’t think you can meet the deadline, we’ll remind you what is at stake and boost your energy for completing the task. Applying for any scholarship can be a lonely job. We are here to walk you through every step of the process, providing practical tips and advice along the way.

    Youíve convinced me; I want to apply. How do I start?
    Your first step: meet Tammie Stewart. She is CTD’s friendly face and your partner in the exciting and worthwhile endeavor of applying for the Jack Kent Cooke Young Scholars Program. We recommend checking the eligibility questions revealed before beginning the online application. If you are not able to download the application, she can provide one to you by mail.

    Iím a parent. How can I help my child apply for the Young Scholars Program?
    As a parent, you play a critical role in the application process. First and foremost, your child needs your encouragement. The simple act of saying, “Go for it!” can make a world of difference to your child’s confidence, not to mention his or her ability to complete the application.

    Second, you need to be a time manager. Applications are available beginning in February each year. Begin the online application as soon as possible, and don't wait to complete it. There are absolutely no exceptions to the deadline date of the late March.

    Finally, there is a section of the application that you, as a parent, need to complete as well as financial information. If the application seems intimidating; please call us. Overcoming your own fears and frustrations with the application is essential to your child’s candidacy and an excellent way for you to model thinking big, working hard and achieving success.

    Iím an educator. How can I get involved with this program?
    Thank you so much for your interest! Center for Talent Development welcomes educator participation in all its programs. Please contact us to discuss opportunities that might be a good fit for your skills and interests. With the Young Scholars Program, for instance, we love it when educators choose to support and guide one or two students through the application process. Your influence and encouragement can truly change lives!

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