The Quad City Scholars is a program dedicated to supporting the pursuit of higher education for minority and economically disadvantaged Iowa and Illinois Quad City high school students through a variety of activities and programs designed to build skills and awareness leading to successful college enrollment and completion as well as career development.
Quad City Scholars is a non-profit program operating in area high schools that was created in 1984 by educational and business leaders in the Quad Cities who recognized not all high school students with college potential were pursuing college degrees. This was a trend occurring nationally as well as locally. A decision was made to provide a college and career exploration program for 9th thru 12th grade students within the Iowa and Illinois Quad City high schools. This program was open to all students but provided information and experiences specifically developed for students of color and for first generation college entrants.
Quad City Scholars operates with the goal of improving college entry rates and success rates for minority, low income and/or first generation Quad City high school students. Quad City Scholars exists in seven high schools in the Quad Cities: Alleman High, Davenport Central, North and West High, Moline High, Rocky High, and United Township High School. The Quad City Scholars program serves nearly 400 high school minority and/or low income students grades 9 through 12. Participating students are expected to maintain a 2.5 gpa or better, demonstrate good citizenship, and have college aspirations. Each high school has a Quad City Scholar Coordinator who meets with students regularly to encourage participation in college prep classes and to provide career and college exploration activities. Each coordinator provides valuable information and time to the program for a small stipend of $1000 per school.
Besides the activities provided in each high school, a Quad City Scholar Area Coordinator sets up numerous joint workshops and activities for students from all participating schools each school year. These activities include: college campus visits to Iowa and Illinois colleges, career and college exploration workshops, writing workshops, financial aid seminars for students and parents, and an ACT prep workshop. The cost of all of these programs and activities is covered by local grants and donations from local businesses, foundations and individual community members.
The program continues to be overseen by a volunteer Board of Directors. There is no office space dedicated to Quad City Scholars. YMCA personnel voluntarily oversee the expenditures of the program in regards to activities, scholarships and coordinator stipends.