Fort Valley State University (FVSU) and National College Resources Foundation (NCRF) announced a partnership designed to attract top students from around the country to Georgia as FVSU Wildcats. NCRF will serve as a platform to help make students aware of FVSU’s Searchlight Scholars program. Selected students will be provided with scholarship funding of up to $52,400 in increments of $13,100 per year, renewable for four years. In addition, scholars will also be provided with mentorship in concert with a research experience. Minimum qualifications for the award include a 3.0 grade point average, a 1,000 SAT score or 20 ACT score, and demonstrated leadership experience. The five-year initiative, valued at over $2 million, is part of FVSU’s effort to bring the most talented students to FVSU to enhance the students’ scholarship, research, and professional development abilities, with the hope that they will remain in Georgia to contribute to state through excellence in their fields. Students can apply at

“Fort Valley State University has the unique ability to both challenge and nurture talented students by pushing them past their preconceived boundaries,” said President Jones. “The Searchlight Scholars Program will help students from across the country understand that there are no borders to their potential, literally and figuratively.”

The Searchlight Scholars Program’s name reflects its purpose— to discover and shine a light on promising students who might otherwise be overlooked. It also hearkens to the FVSU’s historic moniker as “the light in the valley,” a reference to its role in making the illuminating light of knowledge accessible to everyone, regardless of race or economic circumstance.

“National College Resources Foundation is on a mission to close the gap in achievement, workforce, and economic disparities,” said Dr. Price. “This partnership with Fort Valley State University is so exciting because it gives students more resources to become leaders. The Searchlight Scholars Program will help us continue to be a light in the road for students of color who have the grades and talent to attend college, but are short on resources. The NCRF/FVSU partnership will also enhance retention and matriculation for students of color, while creating a great diverse pool of STEAM talent.”

NCRF helps students of color and those from low income communities overcome barriers to entering college. NCRF’s approach is to provide specialized attention which meets the unique needs of each student involved in its programs, and work with them to develop a map to meet their individual goals. In particular, FSVU’s Searchlight Scholars Program will connect students from NCRF’s Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts + Agriculture + Aviation + Aerospace, and Mathematics (STEAM) program with opportunities to enter related majors in the hard sciences at FVSU.

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Teresa D. Southern
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