Chicago Scholar high school students interview with colleges at Navy Pier

Jessica D'Onofrio Image
Tuesday, October 25, 2022
HS students meet with colleges from across country at Navy Pier
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The next generation of leaders are making Chicago Proud.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- High school students with the Chicago Scholars program are interviewing with colleges and impressing the recruits.

Chicago Scholars is hosting a massive college interview day at Navy Pier.

Colleges and universities from all over the country are at the event, with some handing out acceptance letters on the spot.

Hundreds of high school students in the Chicago scholars program are now becoming the first generation in their family to attend college.

A bell ringing means A Chicago Scholar just got an on the spot letter of admission.

Rianna Kingra, a senior at Morgan Park Academy, was just accepted to Indiana University.

"My literal reaction was thank you so much," Kingra said. "I am so excited for this opportunity."

Chicago Scholars is a non-profit organization that selects academically ambitious first generation low-income students. The program gives them the tools to follow their dreams to college and beyond.

Tuesday, 125 colleges from around the country are interviewing over 700 Chicago Scholars at Navy Pier.

"I actually like to come and walk the room to talk to the students to get them energized to help remind them that they are the prize today," Jeffrey Beckham, Chicago Scholars CEO, said.

The seniors met with schools they've already applied to. Some have four or five interviews set up, all their top choices.

Maliyah Brown is a student at Chicago Technology Academy. The teen from the Southwest Side trying to shake the jitters and the stress.

"I'm just going with the flow and just being myself," Brown said. "I'm being myself because I can't be nobody but myself so that's what I'm doing today."

Sa'Niyah Bedell, a senior at Westinghouse College Prep has her sights set on Howard University and eventually becoming a clinical psychologist.

"I don't know for sure what I want to do, but I know for sure I want to help people and psychology is the best way for now," Bedell said.

There are lots of hopes and dreams in one room.

Applications for Chicago Scholars will open at the end of the month. Every year, about 550 to 600 new students are selected.