New Century Scholars

New Century Scholars Community Support

Thank you for your interest in the New Century Scholars Program!
New Century Scholars was started in 1995 after Jackson County Schools Superintendent Dr. Charles McConnell identified the need to help “high potential” students achieve the goal of attending college. New Century Scholars was created to help motivate students to pursue the goal of attaining a college education. Dr. McConnell and Dr. Barry Russell, then President of Southwestern Community College, approached area business leaders with a simple plan to help students and families achieve this dream. The New Century Scholars program was expanded to Macon and Swain counties in 1996.
New Century Scholars is designed to improve academic readiness, bolster student persistence toward high school graduation and increase the college-going rate. It is our desire that New Century Scholars learn to set high personal expectations and work hard to reach their goals.
Potential New Century Scholars are identified by school staff at the end of the 6th grade year. A committee of teachers and administrators review the school record of each candidate and select the “new” New Century Scholars in the Fall of the 7th grade year. Selected students must display effort in the classroom, have a positive attitude and desire for education, and exhibit good behavior and character. A student’s potential for success in college is important. Grade point average and financial need are not primary considerations.
New Century Scholars is a locally funded initiative. To enable the program to provide students with a last dollar tuition assistance guarantee, funds are raised on behalf of each cohort of new students. Each new NCS group is chosen based on the number of awards that can be supported. The funds raised for this group are pooled and used for the collective benefit of the students in that class.
Funding currently comes from local businesses, individuals, clubs, organizations, and fundraisers. All funds raised for NCS awards are held until graduation and used for tuition and fee payments.
Support New Century Scholars Thank you for your desire to support New Century Scholars! At the heart of NCS program is the desire to improve the community we live in. Your support is ESSENTIAL for the New Century Scholars! On behalf of the students, families and community, we thank you for your interest in supporting this important program.
  There are several ways to support the New Century Scholars Program:
  • FINANCIAL SUPPORT - Each donation helps create an opportunity for a New Century Scholar to participate in the program. Please contact the SCC Foundation to donate funds to New Century Scholars.
  • VOLUNTEER SERVICE OPPORTUNITIES - New Century Scholars are asked to give back to the community through volunteer service of at least 10 hours per year. Most students choose to give more than the minimum, as they quickly learn the benefits of serving others. If you are interested in having volunteers work with you, please contact the county coordinators.
  • OTHER WAYS TO SUPPORT- Helping to facilitate job shadowing experiences, providing tutoring and academic support or leading students in enrichment activities are other ways that you can support New Century Scholars students reach their potential!