The central idea behind RaiseMe is that students earn micro-scholarships through various achievements and actions which might include anything from taking an AP course to visiting a college campus. Students can join as early as 9th grade and watch their tally of micro-scholarships add up. If they are then admitted to and enroll in a RaiseMe partner college, they can use the scholarships specific to that institution. The added bonus is that through the RaiseMe website, students can learn of new colleges as they match various institution’s criteria and become eligible for additional scholarships. They can also learn about possible summer programs or other activities that might not otherwise be on their radar.
Colleges differ in how they are using RaiseMe. At Harvey Mudd, we are partnering with RaiseMe to increase our outreach to low income students and to help alert these students to what actions and achievements will make them competitive in our own application process and that of other colleges. For example, Harvey Mudd requires that all students have taken a year of calculus, chemistry and physics and that all students take the Math 2 subject test as well as one other. Given that students are coming to us from around the world, we do not dictate at what level these courses need to be. Knowing that not all students have access to the same courses, we will also occasionally admit students conditionally if they are missing one of these subjects with the understanding that they will take the missing course the summer after they graduate.
For years we’ve been concerned that our low income students often learn of these requirements too late for them to get the courses and testing they need. We are doubly worried about this in the coming years since there is no longer a January test date that would allow students to take the missing test(s.) By seeing which activities and achievements earn micro-scholarships, students will see early in their high school years what they will need to be competitive in the admission process and can decide if they want to pursue these things. Counselors have shared that RaiseMe has increased the conversation at their high schools about going to college and encouraged students to think about a broader picture as they shape their high school years. Further, students who might have heard of Carnegie Mellon but not of Harvey Mudd will see from notifications that we value similar activities and that both schools might be a good fit.
We have created a new series of communications that will help these students to learn more about Harvey Mudd and about the admission process as a whole, including how to navigate the process as a low income student.
Here are some important things to know about the Harvey Mudd RaiseMe micro-scholarships:
- These scholarships are only for low income students. Initially these students will be identified by attending a high school where at least 80% of the students are on free or reduced lunch, but we can also invite individual students from other high schools at your or their request.
- The maximum amount of scholarship a student can earn is $40,000 or $10,000 per year.
- These scholarships are not money that is stacked on top of their existing need-based financial aid. Because Harvey Mudd already is need blind for all US citizens and permanent residents and meets 100% of students’ demonstrated need, low income students will already be receiving a package that meets their full need. A portion of their grant will be recognized as RaiseMe scholarship.
- Providing the students’ financial need does not change dramatically, they will receive the same amount in RaiseMe funding each of their four years.
- Students who do not fit our criteria are still welcome to follow Harvey Mudd on RaiseMe and will receive the same communications and tips as others.
Our hope is that our partnership with RaiseMe will be an additional resource for students and counselors to get a quick idea of what we value at Harvey Mudd and how best to be prepared for Harvey Mudd and other colleges. Please contact our office at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions. Thank you for all of the work you do on behalf of your students!