New Scholars | Kent State University

Why should I join the Rural Scholars Program?

To name just a few reasons, everything from having an undergraduate mentor to participating in career workshops to making memories that will last a lifetime.

Sixth grade rural scholarsRural Scholars is a program designed to help Columbiana County middle and high school students from select schools to explore new possibilities and experience hands-on learning. You’ll get the opportunity to work on projects in the community and in local businesses through our summer camps and workshops. You’ll get individual attention from mentors and instructors who can help you make the best decisions about the educational and career pathways that are best for you. And in the end, if you attend one of Kent State University’s Columbiana campuses, you may even qualify for a free college education! 

The Rural Scholars Program benefits students from all areas of interest. Although the program has some grounding in science, math, and engineering, we also do many other hands-on activities. Everyone can enjoy and learn from our programs, even if math and science are not their primary interests. If you like creative thinking and problem solving, this program is still designed for you! 

While the Rural Scholars Program does provide direction on your journey towards college, we understand that this is not the right path for everyone. Our definition of success is determined by you, and we are more than happy to help you along that road. We help you develop academic preparedness and information you will need to have a wide variety of choices after high school graduation, college or not. 

All of the benefits of the Rural Scholars Program is provided free of cost to our students. Your participation is paid for by Kent State University, your school and our community partners. If you have any other questions, please do not hesitate to contact us. Wendy Pfrenger, Program Coordinator, can be reached by email wpfrenge@kent.edu or by phone 330-337-4233. 

Are you interested in joining our program? Great! We’d love to hear from you. Please check out the eligibility and application requirements below.  

Eligibility and Application Guidelines: 

Students from the following schools around Columbiana county may apply: Salem, Lisbon, Leetonia, East Liverpool, Wellsville, Southern, Crestview and United. Students should be rising 7th grade, and have parents or legal guardians who have not yet obtained a 4 year postsecondary degree. Financial eligibility may also be assessed. 

The application process will require your basic demographic and contact information, tax forms, school transcripts including attendance record, a list of activities involved in both in and out of school, as well as contact information from two references who can attest to your abilities. Our office must receive your application by the end of March, so make sure you get started on it early. 

Once you have gathered all necessary documentation, you can complete our formal application.

Apply to Rural Scholars