Program Overview

New Hampshire Scholars is a federally funded program developed and administered through a partnership between the New Hampshire College and University Council, the New Hampshire Forum on the Future, the New Hampshire Department of Education and the National State Scholars Initiative Network.

The program pairs business leaders with classes of 8th grade students prior to the selection of their high school courses. Business leaders present the students with a powerful presentation that provides the rationale for the recommendation that students take a more rigorous Core Course of Study in high school. Students will contract to the program by means of a 4-year planner – a personalized education plan – to complete the recommended Core Course of Study.

The State Scholars Core Course of Study is basic to acceptance at most 4-year colleges and recommended for students pursuing 2-year Degrees and Certificate Programs. It is also recommended by employers for most, if not all, potential employees entering the workplace upon graduation from high school. Research shows a strong positive correlation between the academic rigor of a student’s high school course of study and the completion of a postsecondary program of study, be it a 2-year or 4-year or certificate program. Research also shows that a high school diploma is no longer enough to attain the skill level necessary to be “successful” in life. Students learn that to attain the lifestyle they would like to lead, the next level of education – postsecondary education – becomes a necessity.

New Hampshire Scholars targets students in the mid-50% range (25% to 75%) of High School population with the goals of increasing the number of students pursuing postsecondary education, decreasing the number of students choosing to drop out of high school, and better equipping students who choose to go directly into the workplace or the military upon graduation from high school.Each school develops a local advisory committee (local partnership) that guides the implementation of the program. Schools will help their students experience “success” by developing incentives and providing recognition once the student has successfully completed the Core Course of Study.

Each school will determine which incentives to offer and in what ways “successful” students will be recognized in their community. These advisory team members are drawn from local business, school personnel, existing advisory boards, postsecondary education, parents, students and other community members. Click here to see how you can start a program in your community. New Hampshire Scholars is primarily funded by the NH Department of Education.